MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (MDA) could soon be using their satellites to check out the Roman Coliseum and other top Italian tourist spots, at least if you take the June 24th, 2010 Canadian News Wire (CNW) press release "MDA to provide a RADARSAT-2 ground information solution"at face value.
The press release states that MDA has:
"signed a multi-million dollar contract with e-GEOS, a leading provider of satellite services in Europe to provide a RADARSAT ground information solution into their existing ground station in Matera, Italy.According to the e-GEOS website, the company (a partnership between the Italian Space Agency and Italian based space services firm Telespazio) is a leading international player in the geo-spatial business, offering products and services related to Earth observation and geomatics using optic and radar satellites plus aerial surveys.
The solution includes a RADARSAT-2 and RADARSAT-1 reception and processing capability and grants RADARSAT data distribution rights to e-GEOS for the European Union in support of a variety of maritime and land surveillance applications."
Sample images on the e-GEOS website include e-GEOS (COSMO-SkyMed), GeoEye (GeoEye-1 and IKONOS) and DigitalGlobe (WorldView-2 and QuickBird) images of South African stadiums used for the 2010 World Cup and recent COSMO-SkyMed images of the Gulf of Mexico which show black oil slick closing in on the Louisiana coast.
The MDA sale comes hot on the heels of a recent Euroconsult report titled "Earth Observation: Defense and Security, World Prospects to 2019" which predicts government procurement of commercial satellite Earth observation data will reach $2.6 billion by 2019, up from only $735 million in 2009.
RADARSAT-1 is Canada's first commercial Earth observation satellite. RADARSAT-2 is Canada's next-generation commercial Earth observation satellite and the follow-on to RADARSAT-1.