Tuesday, 31 March 2015

FWSAR - Another kick at the can...

Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) has relaunched the Fixed Wing Search & Rescue Aircraft Replacement project by issuing a new Request for Proposals (RFP).

The new aircraft, once procured, will replace the Royal Canadian Air Force's aging CC-115 Buffalo and some older model C-130 Hercules aircraft that are mostly tasked with SAR.

At the 2004 Nova Scotia International Airshow, a number of the aircraft in question flew demonstrations for the crowd. Both of the types of aircraft to be replaced were represented:

CC-115 Buffalo SAR aircraft.

CC-130 Hercules

In addition, two of the contenders were also present:

Airbus C-295 just after takeoff.

Airbus C-295
Alenia-Aermacchi C-27J Spartan.
Alenia-Aermacchi C-27J impressing the crowd with a barrel roll.
Also in the running, potentially, are new model C-130J Hercules, and perhaps other contenders as well, assuming everyone shows up to bid on the RFP after all the previous hiccups in the procurement process. It will be interesting to see who submits!

Also at the same airshow was a demonstration of another aircraft, this time a helicopter, that was being considered for procurement by the RCAF (in fact, it may have already been selected at the time of the airshow - I don't remember).

An airshow demo of the proposed CH-148 Cyclone.
The development of the Sikorsky S92/H92 that was to become the CH-148 Cyclone was indeed selected, and while it has not yet entered service, the RCAF is trialing interim models of the helicopter from HMCS HALIFAX during the winter and spring of 2015.

Interim CH-148 Cyclone helicopter taking off from HMCS HALIFAX.

Interim CH-148 Cyclone.
Military procurement is seldom a simple procedure.

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