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MDA receives IEEE Engineering Milestone Award

RICHMOND, BC, Oct. 9, 2014 /CNW/ – MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (“MDA” or the “Company”) (TSX:MDA) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) today announced that the first use of a digital processor to reconstruct an image from Seasat, the first civilian spaceborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite, has been recognized as an IEEE Milestone in Electrical Engineering and Computing.

This groundbreaking image, produced in November 1978 by engineers from MDA, depicts the St. Lawrence River, near Trois-Rivierès, Quebec, as seen from space. The IEEE Milestone in Electrical Engineering and Computing program recognizes technological innovation and excellence that have had significant long-term impact and benefits to society.

Virtually all of MDA’s current and planned capabilities in ground, airborne, and space radar systems can be traced back to the Company’s early achievements in SAR. MDA’s leadership in these areas include an installed base of commercial Earth observation ground stations in more than 25 different countries that process data from more than 20 satellites. The Canadian government’s early and enduring commitment to domestic Earth observation programs using space‐based SAR placed Canada at the forefront of SAR technology and made Canada a world leader in remote sensing.

MDA is also acknowledged for its ongoing contributions to Earth observation via the design, construction, and operation of the most capable space-based SAR systems in the world. From RADARSAT-1 in 1995 to RADARSAT-2 in 2007, the planned RADARSAT Constellation Mission in 2018, and advanced imaging SAR for aircraft platforms serving defence, security, and surveillance applications, MDA is recognized globally for its advanced technical capabilities, robust systems, and sensor engineering.

Don Osborne, MDA’s group vice president of Information Systems said, “MDA has played a leadership role in advancing space technology since the Company’s inception, and have many notable achievements, including the processing of the Seasat image. We commend all our employees for their innovation and valuable contributions to extending Canada’s leadership in the space industry worldwide, and appreciate this prestigious recognition by the IEEE.”

Prof. Amir G. Aghdam, president of IEEE Canada said, “This reminds us that the efforts of a small group of talented engineers can have significant long-term impact. It is a tremendous achievement that perfectly reflects the contribution of Canadian engineers to the industry, as well as the importance of this contribution to the IEEE, the largest professional organization in the world advancing technology for humanity.”

About MDA

MDA is a global communications and information company providing operational solutions to commercial and government organizations worldwide.

MDA’s business is focused on markets and customers with strong repeat business potential, primarily in the Communications sector and the Surveillance and Intelligence sector. In addition, the Company conducts a significant amount of advanced technology development.

MDA’s established global customer base is served by more than 4,800 employees operating from 11 locations in the United States, Canada, and internationally.

The Company’s common shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol “MDA.”

About IEEE

IEEE, a large, global technical professional organization, is dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. Through its highly cited publications, conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational activities, IEEE is the trusted voice on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. Learn more at

The IEEE Milestone in Electrical Engineering and Computing program recognizes technological innovation and excellence that have had significant long-term impact and benefits to society. The IEEE History Committee administers it on behalf of the IEEE Board of Directors.

Related Websites
SOURCE MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd.
For further information:
Wendy Keyzer
MDA External Relations
(604) 231-2743
Prof. David G. Michelson
IEEE History Committee
(604) 822-3544