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Allan Carswell, Lidar Technology Pioneer Honoured

Press Release From: Canadian Space Agency
Posted: Friday, May 19, 2006

Longueuil, Quebec, May 19, 2006 – In recognition of his exceptional contribution to the Canadian Space Program, Dr. Allan Carswell has been presented with the prestigious John H. Chapman Award of Excellence in a celebration held last night at the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) that included representatives of industry, academia and government.

"We are immensely proud of Canada's accomplishments in space technologies. Dr. Carswell is an outstanding scientist and innovator. With the John H. Chapman Award, the CSA honours his significant achievements and lifelong dedication to space science research and development in Canada," said Carole Lacombe, Acting President of the Canadian Space Agency. Dr. Carswell is the seventh recipient of this prestigious Award.

An internationally recognized leader, Dr. Carswell's name is synonymous with lasers. His groundbreaking work perfecting the lidar technology, which uses laser light pulses to precisely measure distances and diagnose components of the atmosphere, has gained wide recognition in the global scientific community. Dr. Carswell founded Optech in 1974 to develop commercial systems based on lidar technology, and led the company through a dynamic growth period.

Recently, the University of Arizona recognized Allan Carswell's expertise in lidar measurements. He was named the Canadian co-investigator on the Phoenix Science Team for the meteorological station (MET) that will be placed on Mars in 2007. The MET contains instruments that will study the exchange of volatile particles between the surface and atmosphere of the Red planet.

About the John H. Chapman Award of Excellence

Established in 2000 and presented annually by the CSA to a member of the space community, this award celebrates a remarkable contribution to the advancement of the Canadian Space Program and a lifetime of achievement in space science and technology. The recipient of the John H. Chapman Award of Excellence is selected by a committee presided by the President of the CSA. With this award, the CSA honours John H. Chapman's foresight and his lifetime of dedication to space innovation, ingenuity, and excellence.

About the CSA

Established in 1989, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) coordinates all civil, space-related policies and programs on behalf of the Government of Canada. CSA directs its resources and activities through four key thrusts: Earth Observation, Space Science and Exploration, Satellite Communications, and Space Awareness and Learning. By leveraging international cooperation, the CSA generates world-class scientific research and industrial development for the benefit of humanity.

For information:

Carole Duval
Media Relations Officer   
                                                       Tel: (450) 926-4370      
                                             carole.duval@space.gc.ca                              

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