Government investing in space and satellite communications technologies to improve access to broadband in rural and remote areas

News release

Nearly $11.5 million from the Strategic Innovation Fund will help create or maintain more than 95 jobs in Quebec

April 11, 2018, Dorval, Quebec

Space touches all aspects of our lives, from connecting us to the Internet to helping farmers map out their crop development. That’s why David Lametti, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, announced a significant investment in the Canadian space industry. Thanks to a repayable government investment of nearly $11.5 million, Advantech Satellite Networks will develop an advanced satellite broadband network that will improve the performance of satellite communication systems. The total value of the project is $29 million.

This funding will help create or maintain more than 95 jobs in Quebec and will bring new high-tech skills to the Montréal region, thanks to Advantech’s partnership with local post-secondary institutions like Concordia University and Dawson College.

The project will support the development of next-generation terminals and hubs for faster and higher-capacity broadband networks that allow data to be transmitted more efficiently across networks, leading to significantly lower network costs. These innovations could also lead to other broadband solutions that will help bring greater Internet access and more reliable service to communities in rural areas of Canada. As the technology can be adapted to any satellite, the project will position Advantech to capture a share of a growing global market.

Canada is uniquely placed, with space satellite industry leaders, to pursue cutting-edge innovations in the fields of low-earth-orbit and high throughput satellite technologies, creating jobs while building better and more reliable connectivity for all Canadians.

Quotes

“Canada’s space sector provides thousands of middle-class jobs for Canadians and drives innovations that improve our everyday lives. Advantech’s satellite project will help strengthen our country’s leadership in space satellite technology while improving Canadians’ access to broadband Internet in all parts of the country. This project is an excellent example of home-grown ideas that help Canadians fully participate in the digital economy.”

– David Lametti, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

“Advantech’s project shows how innovative Quebec companies are solving real problems and creating the middle-class jobs our community needs now and in the future. Its partnership with local post-secondary institutions will help ensure our local workforce has the skills it needs to succeed in our innovation economy.”

– Anju Dhillon, Member of Parliament for Dorval–Lachine–LaSalle

“We are extremely honoured and excited that our High Throughput Satellite System [HTSS] project was awarded this contribution from Canada’s Strategic Innovation Fund. HTSS is an important piece of the overall telecommunications infrastructure and plays a major role in producing visible and concrete outcomes for areas without access to high-speed Internet. The technology being developed will showcase Canadian satellite companies’ innovations that will help them provide affordable connectivity for the benefit of all Canadians, eliminating the digital divide for hard-to-reach regions, including the Arctic. It will also enhance Canadian satellite technology exports worldwide.”

– David Gelerman, President and CEO, Advantech Satellite Networks

Quick facts

  • The Canadian space sector contributes more than $5 billion a year to our economy and employs over 10,000 people.

  • Funding for this project is through the Strategic Innovation Fund, which aims to attract and support high-quality business investments across all sectors of the economy.

  • The Strategic Innovation Fund aims to accelerate economic growth, strengthen and expand the role of Canadian firms in regional and global supply chains, support economic strategies, and attract investment that creates well-paying jobs. It also promotes collaboration among industry and universities, colleges and research institutions to encourage the development of a highly skilled workforce.

  • With a simple, story-based user interface, the new Innovation Canada platform can match businesses with the most fitting programs and services in about two minutes. In addition to the Strategic Innovation Fund, there are hundreds of programs and services to help businesses innovate, create jobs and grow Canada’s economy.

Associated links

Contacts

Karl W. Sasseville
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
343-291-2500

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
343-291-1777
ic.mediarelations-mediasrelations.ic@canada.ca

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