Government of Canada Makes Major Investments in Aerospace and Defence

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Montréal, Quebec, September 9, 2009—The Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry, today confirmed $200 million in funding for the Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI) and announced repayable investments in two Canadian aerospace and defence companies through the SADI program.

"This money will help Canadian companies build on existing capabilities, diversify into new areas of expertise, and introduce new products and services," said Minister Clement. "Innovation brings many benefits, such as commercialization, which creates new opportunities for Canadian businesses and jobs for employees."

Minister Clement announced a $7.6-million repayable investment in support of a research and development (R&D) project being undertaken by PCI Geomatics Group Inc. to develop next-generation earth observation technologies. He also announced a $1.8-million repayable investment for AXYS Technologies Inc. to create an interface between many different data sources that can play key roles in Canada's maritime security.

"These investments build on Canadian expertise in space and security technologies while helping innovative companies play vital roles in the growing earth observation and maritime security markets," said Minister Clement.

The R&D project at PCI Geomatics will involve developing a high-speed computing framework and software suite that will make it possible to process large amounts of raw satellite image data faster and more cost effectively, with an emphasis on increasing the automation of image processing. The resulting data is essential for decision making in many fields, including environmental monitoring, agriculture, security and intelligence, aerospace and defence, and wide-area surveillance.

The AXYS Technologies Port-Waterside–Communications and Networked Data Unification project (PW–CANDU) works on compiling data from various monitoring and surveillance sources to provide comprehensive real-time information. This technology will help defence and security organizations, port operators and other stakeholders to improve maritime security and respond promptly to security incidents such as illegal shipping, discharge of pollutants at sea, oil spills and severe weather threats.

SADI supports strategic industrial research and pre-competitive development projects in the aerospace, defence, space and security industries. SADI is managed by the Industrial Technologies Office, a special operating agency of Industry Canada with a mandate to advance leading-edge research and development by Canadian industries.

For further information (media only), please contact:

Lynn Meahan
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Tony Clement
Minister of Industry

Media Relations
Industry Canada


The Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative

The Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI) supports strategic industrial research and pre-competitive development projects in the aerospace, defence, space and security (A&D) industries.

Launched on April 2, 2007, this new initiative was developed with three key objectives in mind:

  1. to encourage strategic research and development (R&D) that will result in innovation and excellence in new products and services;
  2. to enhance the competitiveness of Canadian A&D companies; and
  3. to foster collaboration among research institutes, universities, colleges and the private sector.

New funding announced for SADI will be spread over four years, starting in 2010. It will ensure that the program has enough money to meet its current obligations and an anticipated increase in demand in the future.

By investing in strategic R&D projects, SADI contributes to the development of technologies that focus on next-generation products or services, build on Canadian strengths and enable Canadian companies to participate in major platforms.

SADI is administered with high standards of transparency and accountability by the Industrial Technologies Office. All project applications undergo extensive evaluation using a clear and rigorous process with published assessment criteria. These criteria include the company's ability to achieve the stated objectives, the project's technology benefits, and the expected social and economic benefits. SADI is consistent with Canada's international trade obligations.

All Canadians receive value from SADI's contributions through the technological and economic benefits that result from supported R&D projects. These benefits include spinoffs in diverse sectors of the economy, such as nanotechnology and information technology, as well as the development of collaborative partnerships with universities, colleges and research institutions. Contributions to R&D made through SADI will also contribute to high-quality employment opportunities; strengthen Canada's workforce with talented scientists, engineers and researchers; and leverage private sector investments in R&D.

Canada's A&D industries are recognized around the world for producing leading-edge products and services. Domestically, these industries are important economic drivers in all regions of the country and are collectively significant players in the development of Canada's knowledge-based economy. Among the world leaders, Canada's A&D industries offer competitive and innovative solutions and are backed by a highly skilled workforce.

The Industrial Technologies Office is a special operating agency of Industry Canada with a mandate to advance leading-edge R&D by Canadian industries.

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