Aerospace, Defence and Security

A world-class aerospace, defence, and security hub

We are a G7 capital with over 170 foreign missions and home to the headquarters for the Department of National Defence, RCMP, Public Safety and Transport Canada. Combined with proximity to a large network of research and development infrastructure, industry-leading multi-nationals, exceptional post-secondary institutions, and North America’s highest concentration of tech talent, Ottawa provides a globally competitive environment where world-class ADS innovation thrives.

Coupled with Fortune 500 companies such as General Dynamics Mission Systems - Canada, Thales, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin Canada, the Ottawa region is home to a cluster of globally competitive ADS small and medium-sized enterprises that offer large reservoirs of talent.

With proximity to government procurement opportunities, ADS companies also have privileged access to some of Canada’s best research and development (R&D) capabilities, including the NRC’s Aerospace Centre, the David Florida Laboratory, and Defence Research and Development Canada.

Why Ottawa is an ideal location for Aerospace, Defence and Security leaders:

    • Ottawa’s defence sector is made up of over 190 companies employing more than 10,000 skilled workers
    • Ottawa has the highest concentration of tech talent (as a percentage of a city’s total employment) in North America at 13.3 percent (CBRE 2023)
    • Canada’s aerospace industry and its value chain added $20.3 billion in GDP and 160,000 (direct and indirect) jobs
    • Canada’s aerospace and defense industry has tripled its global market share in the last two decades, making it the fifth largest aerospace producer in the world (PwC 2020)

Aerospace, Defence and Security Companies in Ottawa

Examples of Ottawa Aerospace, Defence and Security Brilliance

These companies are leveraging our region's exceptional talent, innovative start-ups, and world-renowned R&D facilities.

Lockheed Martin

Lockheed Martin Canada (LMC) is the Canadian arm of global security and defence leader Lockheed Martin Corporation. It is leading the design team for the new Canadian Service Combatant which will employ over 10,000 across Canada and engage more than 4,000 Canadian small and medium-sized suppliers.

The company’s Ottawa presence includes the internationally renowned IMPACT Centre. This laboratory and manufacturing centre serves as a hub for the LMC’s research and development activity by bringing together industry and academia to work on advance innovative technologies.

General Dynamics

Headquartered in Ottawa, General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada is one of the country’s largest defence and security companies. Its Ottawa presence includes a 103,000 sqft. electronics manufacturing plant which designs and delivers advanced system solutions to Canadian and international customers.

The company recently secured to two major Canadian defence contracts, including one as part of Team CERTAS to provide in-service support (ISS) for new manned intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance Canadian Forces aircraft. The other to provide ISS to the Royal Canadian Navy's Halifax-class Combat Systems.


For more than 30 years, MDS has been the global leader in Gas Turbine Engine Solutions—its clients include Pratt & Whitney, Rolls-Royce, Air France, Solar Turbines, MTU, and Siemens.

Specializing in the provision of aviation and industrial/marine solutions, MDS delivers customized, turnkey Gas Turbine Engine test facilities.

MDS’s expertise is paired with a collaborative approach which results in comprehensive and custom engineered solutions that fit clients’ exact needs – today and in the future.

From building the world’s most advanced gas turbine engine test facilities to being at the forefront of research and development, MDS drives innovation. Strongly committed to the local community, MDS supported the development of the world’s only robotic radiosurgery system, the CyberKnife, deployed at the Ottawa Hospital.

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