New provincial funding will help researchers at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) monitor solar winds in space.
Nearly $1.6 million will be provided to operate SuperDARN Canada’s radars over four years.
SuperDARN, which stands for the Super Dual Auroral Radar Network, is a global network of high-frequency radars operated and maintained by multiple universities and research institutions to monitor space weather.
The U of S is home to SuperDARN Canada’s headquarters, which operates radars in Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut.
Each of the five radars scans over 4,000 square kilometres year-round.
They allow researchers to monitor solar wind changes. These changes are connected to the northern lights and detrimental effects to infrastructure like satellites, power grids, and radio communications.
U of S Vice-President Research Karen Chad said they are playing a leadership role in the global collaboration that through the development of technology and data distribution will one day enable true space weather forecasting.
Innovation Saskatchewan’s investment matches funding from the federal government and the Canadian Space Agency’s geospace observatories (GO) Canada program.