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Canadian Science and Technology Revealing Secrets of the Universe

Press Release From: Canadian Space Agency
Posted: Wednesday, January 12, 2000

ATLANTA, GEORGIA--A Canadian astronomer figured prominently in a NASA press conference today where the first science results from the FUSE satellite (Far-Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer) were announced at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. John Hutchings of the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) explained the early Canadian discoveries, which are focused on the study of ``hot stars'' -- the massive stars that are responsible for recycling matter within their host galaxies, both from stellar winds and supernovae.

A number of papers on FUSE results were presented at the conference with Canadian scientists as authors and coauthors. FUSE is a NASA Explorer Mission, funded in cooperation with the Canadian Space Agency and the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales of France. FUSE was developed and is being operated for NASA by Johns Hopkins University (JHU) in collaboration with the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Colorado.

Canadian involvement in the FUSE program includes the provision by the Canadian Space Agency of two Fine-Error Sensors (FES). The FES instruments guide the FUSE to enable it to point in precisely the right direction to make its exacting scientific observations; they also aid in the navigation of the satellite. The Canadian Space Agency also provided support through the funding of two Canadian mission support astronomers, Dr. Alex Fullerton and Dr. Pierre Chayer, stationed at Johns Hopkins University, and partial funding of Dr. Hutchings in his capacity as Canadian Project Scientist for FUSE.

The FES instruments were built by COM DEV International of Cambridge, Ontario, under contract to the Canadian Space Agency. COM DEV also developed the Instrument Data System, the computer system that controls the FUSE telescope, under a separate contract with JHU.

The Canadian Space Agency is committed to leading the development and application of space knowledge for the benefit of Canadians and humanity. It manages and co-ordinates all of Canada's space activities and promotes the Canadian space industry among international partners.

For more detailed information on Canadian FUSE results, please consult the NRC press release at: http://www.hia.nrc.ca/outreach/press/0001fuse.html

For more information on the Canadian Space Agency involvement in the FUSE program, please visit: http://www.science.sp-agency.ca/G1-FUSE(Eng).htm

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