Federal Programs

The Canadian Geodetic Survey (CGS) has the technical expertise to conduct high-precision GNSS and micro-gravity surveys and the scientific know-how to recover the most accurate positions (mm) and gravity estimates (microgal) required for many geoscience applications.  This unique and specialized expertise provides the opportunity for collaboration in a variety of applications, many of them addressing the challenges of mitigating the impacts of geohazards and monitoring climate change.  


GNSS measurements of crustal motion constitute a primary source of information for the assessment of geohazards.  CGS is currently active in earthquake hazards research through provision of CACS data from national and regional networks of continuously operating GPS/GNSS tracking stations.  Periodic observations of denser monumented GNSS networks in targeted regions with increased seismicity are also contributing to the measured tectonic strain in central Canada. CGS continues to engage with NRCan colleagues and other departments who require accurate monitoring of crustal deformation at various spatial scales.

Climate Change/Sea Level Variation

CGS also contributes to climate change studies by evaluating and integrating observations from multiple geodetic systems and instruments such as GNSS receivers, absolute gravimeters, satellite gravity missions (e.g. GRACE), airborne InSAR and LIDAR.  These efforts improve the modelling and understanding of tectonic, hydrological and atmospheric processes that enhance the ability of our scientific community to assess and propose solutions to mitigate climate change, particularly in coastal regions and in major watershed areas, such as the Great Lakes.  Other contributions include support to glaciologists; the study of post-glacial rebound and its impact on surface and groundwater storage variation; the monitoring of regional scale mass redistribution through satellite gravimetry; the maintenance of an accurate sea level reference for the management of inland water resources and coastal erosion; and the capability to conduct absolute gravity surveys to calibrate geophysical models