04/09/2013 01:07 EDT | Updated 06/09/2013 05:12 EDT

Radarsat-1 having technical problems, MDA and Canadian Space Agency say

RICHMOND, B.C. - MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (TSX:MDA) and the Canadian Space Agency said Tuesday that the Radarsat-1 satellite is experiencing technical difficulties and has been placed in "safe mode."

The satellite has been placed in a semi-dormant state that conserves energy as the space agency works to investigate and assess the problem.

"The investigation is ongoing, but expectations of a full recovery are low," the agency said.

Government and commercial users of the satellite have been told that no new orders for imagery from Radarsat-I are being taken.

MDA, which is the worldwide distributor of Radarsat-1 data, said the problem was not significant to its business.

Radarsat-1 was launched in 1995 and at the time was expected to operate for 12 years.

Radarsat-2 was launched in 2007.