Here’s How a Brampton Company is Helping NASA Lead Future Space Missions

Published September 13, 2019 at 11:04 pm

A Brampton company is helping NASA and the Canadian Space Agency in a big way!

A Brampton company is helping NASA and the Canadian Space Agency in a big way!

MDA, a Maxar company and an innovator in Earth Intelligence and Space Infrastructure, has been awarded two contracts from the Canadian Space Agency for work on Phase A of the Gateway External Robotic Interfaces project.

The Gateway External Robotic Interfaces will help form Canadarm3. The first-ever Canadarm (a shuttle remote manipulator system) flew on over 90 shuttle missions, and Canadarm2 and Dextre have been in operation on the International Space Station for more than 18 years.

Canadarm3 is the artificial intelligence-enabled robotic system that will service the NASA-led Gateway. The Gateway will lead to future exploration missions, including human lunar landings. The company will specifically help form the eXploration Large Arm (XLA) and the eXploration Dexterous Arm (XDA).

Canadarm3 will provide Extra-Vehicular Robotics (EVR) services to the Gateway including external logistics, maintenance, inspection, assembly and reconfiguration, and support to external science payloads.

“MDA is proud to continue our legacy of working with the Canadian Space Agency and its international partners to design, build and deploy robotic systems in support of space exploration missions,” said Mike Greenley, group president of MDA. “This project will leverage MDA’s world-leading space robotics capabilities, gained through the Canadarm programs, and will be an important component of Canada’s contribution to the NASA-led Gateway.”

On Phase A of the Gateway External Robotic Interfaces project, MDA will work with the Canadian Space Agency to develop the interface, develop the system requirements and undertake technology development activities necessary to form the Gateway module. They will also share their information to support the integration of the external robotics.

Since 1981, MDA has been working with the government to lead the design and development of robotics for use in space exploration missions through the US Space Shuttle and International Space Station programs.

As a leader in delivering space infrastructure to explore and advance the use of space, Maxar is playing a key role in NASA’s Artemis program to return astronauts to the Moon by 2024 and enable future missions to Mars.

What do you think about this big step for a Brampton company?

Photo courtesy of The Globe and Mail

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