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Former astronaut Steve MacLean new head of Canadian Space Agency

  • 03 September 2008
  • Written by 
  • Published in Space
On Tuesday, September 2, 2008, Steven “Steve” Glenwood MacLean, a two-time space shuttle astronaut, was named as the new head of the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).

MacLean will be replacing acting president Guy Bujold, who will become the president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Canarie Inc., a non-profit internet network provider

The news release by industry minister Jim Prentice, conducted during a speech at the Cambridge, Ontario-based space hardware company COM DEV International, stated that Dr. Steve MacLean is "a modern hero and is very highly respected among academic, industrial and international partners." [UPI: “Canadian astronaut to head space agency”]

Prentice went on to say, "His appointment as president is evidence of the government's commitment to leverage Canada’s space science and technology to position Canada as a leading space-faring nation.” [CBC News: “Steve MacLean named head of space agency”]

MacLean was a payload specialist during NASA mission STS-52 onboard the space shuttle Columbia from October 22 to November 1, 1992. During the mission, MacLean performed a series of seven experiments called CANEX-2.

Then, in 2006, MacLean flew onboard space shuttle Atlantis during mission STS-115 (September 9-21, 2006). At that time, MacLean became the first Canadian astronaut to operate the Canadian Canadarm2 when the mission's crewmembers installed the P3/P4 trusses and deployed solar array panels for power generation on the International Space Station. He also walked in space, the second Canadian to do so.

NASA interviewed MacLean on July 19, 2006 before his STS-115 flight.

Page two continues the article on MacLean and the Canadian Space Agency.

The CBC article concludes by saying “Prentice said one of MacLean's first acts as president will be to begin consultations to determine a new, long-term space plan, but that his role will go far beyond consultations.”

It continues, "I [Prentice] have given Steve a mandate to make sweeping changes at the CSA. As we stand at this crossroads, he will revitalize the agency. He will restore its ability to punch above its weight in an international quest. He will develop Canada’s capacity for a new era of prestige and achievement," he said in a statement.”

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA or, in French, l'Agence spatiale canadienne, ASC) is the Canadian government's space agency. Established in March 1989, it is responsible for Canada's space program.

The headquarters of the CSA is located at the John H. Chapman Space Centre in Saint-Hubert, Quebec.

The Canadian Space Agency has contributed much to space exploration, along with lending great support to the construction of the International Space Station.

Besides its crew of astronauts, the CSA is probably best known for providing the Canadarm (Shuttle Remote Manipulator System [SRMS], or Canadarm1) on the Space Shuttle fleet and the Canadarm2 (Mobile Servicing System [MSS], whose main component is the Canadarm2) on the International Space Station.


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