Archived — Government Of Canada Invests in Next-Generation Mobile Satellite Communications

Ottawa, August 20, 2009—The Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry, today announced an $8.7-million repayable investment in support of a next-generation mobile satellite communications research and development (R&D) project undertaken by EMS Technologies Canada Ltd. (EMS SATCOM).

Through this project, EMS SATCOM will develop new products and applications for its satellite communications business. These include transceivers, antennas and networking systems. The technology developed will augment current product lines and result in new products that will benefit a variety of users, such as national security forces and commercial travellers, who will profit from improved in-flight communications.

"By supporting the development of advanced satellite communications technologies, the federal government is building on Canada's strength in the aerospace and defence sectors," said Minister Clement. "This repayable investment will ensure that advanced R&D and highly skilled engineering and manufacturing jobs remain in Canada and help stimulate economic growth."

The company's Ottawa-based operations will be responsible for much of the research. In addition, extensive technology and knowledge-transfer opportunities through collaboration with suppliers will benefit the mobile aerospace and defence markets, including business and commercial air travel and military aviation.

"This partnership with the federal government will allow our company to maintain its leadership position in the airborne satcom industry," said Joanne Walker, Vice President and General Manager of EMS SATCOM. "This investment will help us continue our intensive R&D activities and bring innovative technologies to market faster."

The investment is being made through the Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI), which 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 R&D by Canadian industries.

For further information (media only), please contact:

Laryssa Waler
A/Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Tony Clement
Minister of Industry
613-995-9001

Media Relations
Industry Canada
613-943-2502


Backgrounder

Government of Canada Invests in Next-Generation Mobile Satellite Communications

The Government of Canada's repayable investment will allow EMS Technologies Canada Ltd. (EMS SATCOM) to develop new products and new applications for its satellite communications technologies, including transceivers, antennas and networking devices. The technology developed will augment current product lines and result in new products that will benefit a variety of users. For example, national security forces and commercial travellers will benefit from improved in-flight communications.

The new technologies will operate reliably over a wide range of environmental conditions, allowing faster data communications on more robust platforms. Aerospace and defence markets will be able to use these technologies for air transport, and business, commercial and military aviation.

The next-generation mobile satellite communications project will stimulate economic growth in Ottawa, mostly in engineering and manufacturing. Through work subcontracted to other companies, this project will also contribute to the Canadian contract manufacturing sector while facilitating technology transfer between EMS and its suppliers.

The project offers significant spillover benefits, including a more efficient Canadian transportation sector and better interoperability between communications technologies.

Based in Ottawa, EMS SATCOM employs approximately 330 people in development and sales in Ottawa, the United States and Europe. It has two wholly owned engineering subsidiaries located in Tewkesbury, United Kingdom, and Adelaide, Australia.

The Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI), launched in April 2007, supports private sector industrial research and pre-competitive development in Canada's aerospace, defence, security and space industries through repayable investments. For more information about SADI, please visit the Industrial Technologies Office website.

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