International space science began suddenly with the creation of COSPAR (Committee on Space Research) in October, 1958, and its first plenary meeting was held in London, in November the same year. Canada was at the table for both the creation and the first plenary meeting. This book describes the parallel growth of the Canadian space science program from that date up to the 50th Anniversary of COSPAR, to be celebrated in Montreal in July 2008. This work relates the history of ground-based activity that placed Canada at the forefront of nations with knowledge of space in 1958, gained primarily through observations of the aurora borealis by optical and radar methods. By the time of the International Geophysical Year, 1957-58, Canada was well established in this research and had built its own rocket payloads. During the sixties this activity increased tenfold with the inception of the Alouette/ISIS satellite missions in 1962, and a vigorous rocket program conducted at Fort Churchill and elsewhere.
After the last Defence Research Board satellite, ISIS-11, was launched in 1971 the program changed direction; the National Research Council maintained the rocket program at a lower level and space opened up for Canadian instruments on international spacecraft leading to some highly successful missions. Long overdue, the Canadian Space Agency was established in 1989 and is now leading a more mature program including Canada's first scientific mission since ISIS-11 (SCISAT-1), the Earth-observing Radarsat-1 and a strong astronaut program. The final achievement of the fifty years is a Canadian-built lidar that is part of the NASA Phoenix mission and is on its way to Mars, destined to land there in May 2008.
Buy Canada's Fifty Years in Space book by Gordon Shepherd from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(180mm x 255mm x 15mm)
Publisher: Collector's Guide Publishing
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Author Biography - Gordon Shepherd
Gordon Shepherdis director of the Centre for Research in Earth and Space Science at York University and the executive committee chair for the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) 2008 Scientific Assembly. He is a former project scientist, principal investigator, and assistant professor whose work withspace science spans 50 years. Agnes Kruchio is a cofounder of "MediaTropes" and the author of "Polar Science: The Legacy of Canada's Participation in the International Polar and Geophysical Years." She has also curated exhibitions on Canadian polar and space research for the Canada Science Museum. They both live in Toronto."