The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) is awarding a contract worth $30 million to Honeywell for the design and implementation phases of the QEYSSat mission, according to today’s press release issued by the CSA, this according to the Inside GNSS infosite.
Current encryption methods are expected to be rendered obsolete within the next decade by the exceptional processing power of quantum computers. Slated for launch in 2022, QEYSSat will demonstrate quantum key distribution (QKD) technology in space. This emerging encryption technology will offer Canada a new, more effective method of securing the transfer of information.
Under this contract, Honeywell will build, test, deliver, provide training for and commissioning of the QEYSSat satellite, which will create a link between ground and space to transmit encryption keys. The work is expected to extend until the end of 2022.
The QEYSSat mission is the culmination of a series of research and technology development activities undertaken by the Institute for Quantum Computing, with support from the Government of Canada. It will bring Canada a step closer to an operational quantum communications service from space, and will advance technology to help meet Canada’s cybersecurity priorities.