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NASA awards MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates $14.7 Million contract for Shuttle and Space Station sustaining engineering

Press Release From: MDA
Posted: Tuesday, October 31, 2000

MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. subsidiary, MD Robotics, has received a $14.7M (Cdn.) contract from NASA Johnson Space Center to provide engineering support to robotics elements on both the Shuttle and the rapidly developing International Space Station.

The contract will add to sustaining engineering services already provided to NASA by MDA in support of the Canadarm, a vital component of the Shuttle, and the Robotic Work Station, a recently delivered product destined for the International Space Station. For these important manned spaceflight products, MDA will provide management, engineering resources and services to maintain the integrity of flight hardware, software and ground support equipment. The contract also provides for product improvements and enhancements, flight spares, and integration and test activities through to the end of 2002.

The Canadarm, a hallmark of Canadian technology, has been a key Shuttle component since it first entered service in 1981. The four Canadarms are now entering a very busy phase with the on-orbit assembly of the International Space Station.

The Robotic Work Station is designed to provide vital display, control and command links to the space station's robotics, cameras, and video equipment, allowing astronauts to perform difficult assembly and maintenance tasks from within the safe confines of the space station.

"This contract clearly confirms MD Robotics' leadership in developing, managing and maintaining manned spaceflight robotics on both the Shuttle and the International Space Station," said Mag Iskander, vice president and general manager of MD Robotics.

About MacDonald Dettwiler

MacDonald Dettwiler is an information company that provides essential information from anywhere in the world for decision making in the workplace. The Company operates its business through two principal groups: the Information Products Group and the Information Systems Group. The Information Products Group delivers essential land information products and services in three categories including: legal information, asset information, and geographical information.

The Information Systems Group provides mission critical information systems to three major applications: monitoring activities on the planet, managing mobile assets, and enabling the mobile workforce. MacDonald Dettwiler employs 1700 people around the world through a network of offices, subsidiaries, and distributors.

About MD Robotics

MD Robotics, a subsidiary of MacDonald Dettwiler, is the world's leading space robotics company, committed to offering hi-tech, sophisticated robotic and engineering solutions for space and terrestrial applications.

About The International Space Station (ISS)

The International Space Station (ISS) is the largest and most ambitious space program since the Apollo moon landings and the largest scientific joint effort among nations in history. The International Space Station partners a global team led by NASA. Countries participating in the program include the United States, Canada, Japan, Russia, Brazil and a consortium of European communities under the flag of the European Space Agency. Each of the international partners is providing key elements to the program. The first components of the station were placed in orbit in late 1998.

The space station will provide unique laboratories to conduct research in fields such as astronomy, life sciences and materials, as well as locations to assemble satellites and space platforms too large and fragile to launch directly from Earth. The advanced technologies being used to construct the station will find applications in many industries on earth.

Under contract to the Canadian Space Agency, MD Robotics designed and developed the Mobile Servicing System (MSS), Canada's contribution to the International Space Station. The MSS is comprised of three components: the Space Station Remote Manipulator System, the Mobile Base System and the Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator. The components will be launched in April 2001, February 2002, and October 2003 respectively.

Related web sites:
www.mda.ca
www.mdrobotics.ca

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