C-CORE Offers High Tech Environmental Monitoring Solutions

News release

Federal and provincial governments support advances in satellite technology 

July 24, 2019 – St. John’s (NL) – Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency 

Developing leading edge technology helps grow the economy, creates jobs and advances sectors such as aerospace and defence. To this end, C-CORE’s advancements in satellite technology will provide innovative environmental monitoring solutions to benefit researchers, industry and government. 

C-CORE is building capacity to collect data from small satellites (smallsats) that orbit the earth for observation purposes such as environmental monitoring. Using comparably small-scale ground stations, C-CORE is extracting large amounts of data from the orbiting smallsats. It then analyzes and interprets the data to more effectively monitor and measure environmental indicators, such as greenhouse and air quality gas emissions, for clients in various sectors, including resource development, transportation, and safety and security. 

C-CORE is developing innovative ground station technology in St. John’s with initial deployments in the Arctic (Inuvik, Northwest Territories) and in Atlantic Canada (Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador). 

The Government of Canada is providing a non-repayable contribution of nearly $2.7 million, while the provincial department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation is contributing $500,000 towards this project. 

Nick Whalen, Member of Parliament for St. John’s East, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), along with the Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore, Newfoundland and Labrador Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, made the announcement today. 

The Government of Canada is making smart investments that will create good, middle-class jobs in our country. It is helping Atlantic Canadians develop and bring to market new products and services that help grow strategic sectors and create research and commercialization partnerships. Support for this project is one way the Government of Canada is working to achieve its Atlantic Growth Strategy outcome of long-term economic prosperity in the region.


“For over 40 years, C-CORE has been a world leader in ice-sensing, geotechnical engineering and remote sensing, employing scientists and engineers who study harsh environments right here at Memorial University’s St. John’s campus. This Government of Canada investment in C-CORE’s latest work in satellite technology will harness their niche expertise to create leading-edge employment opportunities for the people of our province.”

- Nick Whalen, Member of Parliament for St. John’s East

“The Government of Canada is pleased to support collaborative efforts that generate more research, innovation and growth in key sectors such as aerospace and defense. In particular, it is great to see the successful partnership between C-CORE and College of the North Atlantic to establish a new ground station in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, which will result in more innovation in our province.”

- Yvonne Jones, Member of Parliament for Labrador

“C-CORE’s ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit has been instrumental in our government’s heightened importance on innovation. Their cutting edge technology to effectively monitor and measure environmental indicators through data collection will help address challenges faced by those working in our resource development, transportation, safety and security sectors. We are proud to invest in innovation, to develop highly skilled jobs, to sustain local market growth and to further develop the economy.”

- The Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore, Newfoundland and Labrador Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation

“As demand grows for information to support priorities such as business intelligence and environmental stewardship, a new generation of small satellites is meeting this need. C-CORE’s new ground stations provide a matching solution - smaller, cheaper and more easily deployable. With help from ACOA and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, we’re innovating to keep our province and country at the leading edge of space technology that has the ability to turn information into insights.”

- Paul Griffin, President and CEO of C-CORE

Quick facts

  • C-CORE is developing innovative, comparably small ground stations and related technology to build its capacity to collect and interpret data from the new generation of small satellites.

  • C-CORE’s initial ground station, optimized for use in the Arctic, was designed and built in St. John’s. It has operated successfully at the Inuvik Satellite Station Facility for more than a year, receiving environmental data from more than 2000 satellite orbits

  • C-CORE is currently designing and building a second, enhanced ground station in St. John’s, which will be installed in Happy Valley-Goose Bay in late 2019.

  • Project partners include Natural Resources Canada (Inuvik Satellite Station Facility), College of the North Atlantic, Boeing Phantom Works, Nova-Consult and GHGSat Inc.

  • The Government of Canada is investing $2,679,577 in this project through ACOA’s Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF). The AIF encourages partnerships among private sector firms, universities, colleges and other research institutions to develop and commercialize new or improved products and services.

  • The AIF continues to build on the objectives of the Innovation and Skills Plan, a multi-year strategy to create well-paying jobs for the middle class and those working hard to join it.


Paul McGrath
Director, Communications

Eric Humber
Media Relations Manager
Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
709-729-4819; 709-725-9655

Deirdre Greene Lono
Corporate Communications Manager

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