BackForward Satellite Programme: RadarSat 

Programme details
Programme description
  • Two-satellite programme for SAR observation.
  • Canadian programme: CSA responsible of development and operations, supported by the private sector and by NASA for the launch.
  • The platforms are actively stabilised over 3 axes.
  • The design life time is 5 years for RadarSat-1 and 7 years for RadarSat-2.
  • The satellites exploit sunsynchronous dawn-dusk orbits at 6:00.
  • The replacement policy is based on launching satellites in sequence, roughly 6 months before the expected end-of-life of a satellite.
  • See detailed description at
Data circulation
  • Onboard stored data are transmission to Prince Albert (Saskatchewan), and Gatineau (Quebec).
  • Real-time data are transmitted to several appointed ground stations.
  • Data processing is performed at the Canadian Data Processing Facility (CDPF) in Gatineau, operated by the Geospatial Services of MDA (MacDonald Dettwiler Associates Ltd) (formerly RADARSAT International Ltd).
Agencies CSA
Programme lifetime 1995 - 2024
Associated satellites and instruments

Note: red tag => no longer operational , green tag => operational , blue tag => planned