The Earth Observing System (EOS) will provide the infrastructure necessary to map and experiment with ecosystems within Quebec's Saint Lawrence River Valley (SLRV) with the primary goal of deriving a quantitative prediction model of interactions throughout the region's climate system. Such a model is critical for understanding the local feedbacks that climate and extreme weather have on changing ecosystems. A key feature of EOS is its combined capability to support fixed observational facilities and a flexible mobile infrastructure to observe and analyze the Dynamic Earth System (DES) in more remote locations of Canada. DES, the portion of the Earth that is in a real-time state of change, includes climate and anthropogenic activities' contribution to the energy imbalances that yield extreme weather. The SLRV's climate includes extreme weather, a range of land use from urban to natural, and biodiversity fluxes. The development of a comprehensive prediction model of the SLRV's DES will provide crucial guidance for policy makers, stakeholders, and the public on best strategies for regional development, such as urban growth and biodiversity conservation. Secondary benefits include the creation of novel technologies that range from networked and remote, robotic sensing and imaging, state-of-the-art mobile labs, and continuous-feed data management. The EOS infrastructure in the SLRV will place Canada at the international forefront of developing the science and new technologies.

Project Resume


The research project Adaptable Earth Observation System’s goal is to study the changing climate and weather patterns in the Saint-Lawrence Valley while also looking at the biological effects of the climate change. For this purpose, new adaptable laboratories have been designed by McGill University. At the Gault Nature Reserve in Mont-Saint-Hilaire, a new building was built, the Earth Observation System-Laboratory, which is housing a biological wet lab, an operation base for meteorological deployment and a mobile laboratory deployment site. A new molecular biology laboratory at McGill's Central campus has been built as well, permitting advanced analysis of the samples collected in the field. An important component of the acquired infrastructure are the 7 meteorological stations, known as climate sentinels, which are fully instrumented to measure surface properties including: temperature at 8 different heights, winds, snow, humidity, visibility, precipitation, radiation and CO2 as well as profiling equipment such as micro rain radars (MRR) and ceilometers. In addition, the project acquired 2 AERI profiling IR radiometers installed in Montreal and Mont-Saint-Hilaire and 2 Halo scanning doppler lidars are installed on either side of the Saint-Lawrence River to monitor air pollution in Montreal downtown core.

The project is also acquiring requestable, transportable, customizable, and autonomous laboratories housed in containers as well as transportable equipment. The mobile equipment includes: a portable Upper Air Sounding system, a portable MRR pro radar, a Halo scanning doppler lidar and a portable AERI radiometer. The transportable containers include both meteorological and biological instruments and are equipped with a laboratory and living quarters.


These equipment and infrastructures are being acquired with the financial contribution of the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, the Quebec Government, McGill University and UQAM.


Infrastructures (link to each page)

  1. Climate sentinels
  2. Scanning Doppler lidars-Halo Streamline XR+
  3. Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer (AERI)
  4. Mobile laboratories (Mobile adaptable lab and Mobile isotope lab)
  5. Mobile Urban Weather Station (MUST)
  6. Earth Observation System-Laboratory building
  7. Molecular biology laboratory
  8. Phenotyping lab
  9. Mobile climate sentinels
  10. Metboxes
  11. Computer and Servers infrastructure
  12. Pickup truck Vehicle