Sunday, April 13, 2014

Power-Points from the February 25th Canadian Space Agency Meeting

          by Chuck Black

The Concordia Institute of Aerospace Design and Innovation (CIADI) has posted presentations from what the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) has billed as its 1st "Annual Space Summit," which was held at CSA headquarters in Longueuil, PQ, on February 25th.

As outlined on the March 24th, 2014 post on the CIADI website, the CSA event focused on the specifics of the Federal government strategy to implement Canada's space policy framework, first announced by industry minister James Moore on February 7th, 2014.

But while the broad outlines of the day's activities were well known and previously discussed in a variety of publications (including the February 24th, 2014 blog post "the Casablanca of Space Conferences"), the devil is always in the details.

Walt Natynczyk. Photo c/o CSA.
Fortunately the people responsible for filling in those details were present for the event. They included Col. Andre Dupuis, the director of space development at the Department of National Defence (DND), who spoke on the topic of Integrating Space in Canadian Forces Operations; John T. Weaver from the Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC) Ottawa research centre who discussed the DRDC Space Science and Technology Program; Prashant Shukle, the director general of the Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation, who assessed issues involved with Innovating to Increase the Impact of Earth Observation (EO) & Geomatics in Canada; Michael Manore, the director of monitoring strategies for the Meteorological Service of Canada (MSC) who assessed the Space Activities and Priorities of Environment Canada and even Walter Natynczyk, the generally publicity shy CSA president who dropped in for an overview of how the CSA intends to Implement Canada's Space Policy Framework.

The day also included workshops on a number of themes including the commercialization of government funded technologies, the development of innovation processes and key industry capabilities, the future of Canadian contributions to the International Space Station (ISS) and other space exploration initiatives, how the Federal government perceives its role in Earth observation and satellite services, how the Federal government perceives that government, industry and universities will work together to encourage innovation plus the role of stakeholder in the process and how to manage them.

A cursory reading of the day's presentations suggests an almost complete acceptance of the recommendations of the David Emerson led Aerospace Review as outlined in the December 12th, 2012 post "What the Space Volume of the Aerospace Review Actually Says." 

But there is also at least the suggestion that CSA still perceives itself as being able to manage and influence the processes related to Canadian space activities.

As outlined in the February 15th, 2010 post "Ottawa Citizen: "Where did that Long Term Space Plan Go?" that perception might just be an artifact of an earlier era.

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