The Canadian government announced that it would invest $13 million in NorthStar Earth and Space Inc.
The Montreal-based start-up wants to use low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites to address challenges facing our planet. These satellites would collect valuable data and images both on Earth and in space.
The funding will come in part from the Strategic Innovation Fund, a $1.26 billion program to help make Canada a global leader in innovation, as well as the Quebec Economic Development Progam.
The former will invest $9.5 million in NorthStar. The latter will grant the company a repayable contribution of $3.5 million.
“NorthStar’s project demonstrates how Canada’s space sector is driving game-changing innovations and developing solutions to real-world problems,” said Navdeep Bains, the minister of innovation and of science and economic development.
“Our government’s investment will help ensure that Quebec remains at the forefront of advanced information technology, creating good jobs for the middle class and positioning Canada’s economy to be globally competitive.”
The funding will help NorthStar revolutionize the way people see the world. For example, the improved satellite images will lead to better forecasting and tracking of events, including forest fires, rising sea levels and oil spills.
Additionally, NorthStar will introduce a new, more effective method for tracking space debris.
Finally, the investment will enable NorthStar to collaborate with Canadian post-secondary institutions, train Canadian workers and students and implement a diversity and gender plan by 2019.