Cansec '16: Focus on The RCAF

By David Pugliese

From the June 2016 Issue (Volume 23, Issue 5) 

On November 27, 2015 a C295W flew from Río Gallegos Airport in Argentina to that country’s permanent, year-round base on Seymour Island in northern Antarctica, Marambio Base, the first flight ever by a C295 to Antarctica. The aircraft conducted a month-long tour of Latin and South American countries, exposing it to a variety of climactic conditions. (roberto molinos, airbus military)

On November 27, 2015 a C295W flew from Río Gallegos Airport in Argentina to that country’s permanent, year-round base on Seymour Island in northern Antarctica, Marambio Base, the first flight ever by a C295 to Antarctica. The aircraft conducted a month-long tour of Latin and South American countries, exposing it to a variety of climactic conditions. (roberto molinos, airbus military)

From an aviation point of view, the focus of a number of CANSEC 2016 exhibitors will be on three key programs for the RCAF: the acquisition of new fixed-wing search and rescue (FWSAR) aircraft, the provision of contracted air services, and the eventual replacement of the CF-18 fighter jet.

It won’t come as a surprise to industry watchers that speculation about which firm will walk away with the contract for the Canadian government’s FWSAR project will be a hot topic during CANSEC 2016.

The $3.1 billion aircraft procurement has been years in the making. Bids were submitted January 11 and RCAF commander LGen Michael Hood says the winning bidder is expected to be announced by the end of this year.

CANSEC 2016 exhibitors Airbus and Alenia Aermacchi have been courting the Canadian government for more than a decade on FWSAR. Their aircraft are proven and currently flying in search-and-rescue missions for other countries.

Alenia’s group — dubbed Team Spartan — includes Alenia Aermacchi (a subsidiary of Finmeccanica Aircraft Division); General Dynamics Canada (in-service support systems integrator and mission system provider); IMP Aerospace (responsible for the installation of General Dynamics’ mission system); DRS Technologies Canada (training); Kelowna Flightcraft (maintenance and repair, engineering support, and supply chain management); Esterline CMC Electronics (various pieces of flight equipment); Flyht Aerospace (automated flight reporting system); Rolls Royce (engines); and Standard Aero (maintenance of Canadian fleet of FWSAR engines). Team Spartan has bid the C-27J.

Airbus Defence & Space has teamed with Provincial Aerospace of St. John’s, Newfoundland; Pratt & Whitney Canada of Longueuil, Quebec; CAE of Montreal; and L-3 WESCAM ofBurlington, Ontario. Provincial Aerospace is the main Canadian in-service support (ISS) partner; Pratt & Whitney Canada will provide engines for every aircraft; CAE manufactures simulators and training devices; and L-3 WESCAM will produce the electro/optical sensors for the aircraft. This consortium is bidding the C-295W.

The new FWSAR planes will replace the Royal Canadian Air Force’s aging Buffalo aircraft and older model C-130s that are currently assigned to search-and-rescue duties. The FWSAR project is divided into a contract for the acquisition of the aircraft and another contract for 20 years of in-service support.

Both teams are highlighting their proven capabilities. Team Spartan members General Dynamics Mission Systems – Canada and Finmeccanica are also promoting their joint venture to provide long-term in-service support for the C-27J aircraft in Canada. Managed by General Dynamics Mission Systems –Canada, Spartan Aviation Services will be the Canadian in-service support integrator if the C-27J is selected as the Royal Canadian Air Force’s fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft.

Spartan Aviation Services will be responsible for the delivery of the entire ISS program and will be supported by a partner network in Canada including: KF Aerospace, DRS Canada, TRU Sim, Rolls Royce Canada, Standard Aero, CAE, CMC Esterline, L3 Wescam and ATCO.

The C-295W team has also rolled out its in-service support organization. Airbus Defence & Space and Provincial Aerospace have combined their assets to create a joint venture, AirPro Search and Rescue Services, which will be responsible for all of the ISS for the C-295W should it win the contract. 

The third bidder for FWSAR is Embraer, with its KC-390. But the aircraft is facing a number of drawbacks in this competition: the aircraft only made its maiden flight in February 2015 and is not yet in full production. Some defence industry representatives questioned how Embraer was able to bid since the plane is not yet certified. The company has said that certification won’t take place until the end of 2017 and first deliveries not until 2018. Embraer also does not appear to have announced any teaming arrangements with Canadian firms. (As of press time, it doesn’t have a booth at this year’s CANSEC, although in the past Embraer has noted it has arrangements with Boeing to market the KC-390.)

Embraer officials, however, do not see any of these issues as an impediment to the firm winning Canada’s FWSAR contract.

CANSEC 2016 will also feature many of the companies who hope their aircraft will eventually replace Canada’s CF-18 fighter jets. The Trudeau government has promised an open and transparent competition and firms are proceeding based on that claim.

The actual contract is still many years away, but that hasn’t stopped the companies from marketing themselves as the best solution for Canada.

In September 2015 it was announced that BAE Systems had successfully completed guided firing trials of the Meteor Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air missile (BVRAAM) launched from a Eurofighter Typhoon combat aircraft. (eurofighter)

In September 2015 it was announced that BAE Systems had successfully completed guided firing trials of the Meteor Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air missile (BVRAAM) launched from a Eurofighter Typhoon combat aircraft. (eurofighter)

Boeing continues to highlight its Super Hornet, and Dassault its Rafale fighter jet. The Saab Gripen was seen as a contender during Canada’s original examination of the fighter jet market, but company officials have largely stayed silent for the time being. Eurofighter is promoting its Typhoon and the aircraft’s interoperability with NATO nations.

At last year’s CANSEC, Eurofighter promoted its plane based on its proven capabilities; more than 430 aircraft have been delivered and 300,000 hours flown. It has also promoted its improved technologies, including the development of an AESA E-Scan radar system. The European consortium has also highlighted its ability to provide Canadian firms with high-tech work on the aircraft (Eurofighter partner companies include Finmeccanica – Alenia Aermacchi, BAE Systems and Airbus Defence & Space).

Lastly, it has promoted the progress made on weapons integration, including the Meteor long-range air-to-air missile and the Storm Shadow stand-off precision attack weapon. The effectiveness of ASRAAM air-to-air missile and Paveway IV laser/GPS-guided bombs has also been enhanced with software upgrades, company officials say.

Cindy Tessier, head of communications for Lockheed Martin Canada, said their firm will have a robust presence at CANSEC 2016 “showcasing a broad range of business solutions for our customers.” On the aviation side, it will highlight future aircrew training solutions, the C-130J and Sikorsky helicopters. 

Back in 2013, Lockheed Martin promoted the technological advances of its F-35 Lightning II aircraft. Three years later, the company will once again be bringing to CANSEC the crowd-pleasing cockpit simulator for its stealth fighter. (cadsi)

Back in 2013, Lockheed Martin promoted the technological advances of its F-35 Lightning II aircraft. Three years later, the company will once again be bringing to CANSEC the crowd-pleasing cockpit simulator for its stealth fighter. (cadsi)

Last year Lockheed Martin purchased Sikorsky for $9 billion. On the Canadian scene, Lockheed’s Sikorsky subsidiary is in the midst of delivering its Cyclone maritime helicopter; the RCAF accepted the first six CH-148s in June of last year and aircraft are still being tested.

Also to be highlighted at the booth this year will be Lockheed Martin’s CDL Systems, which specializes in the development and licensing of vehicle control station software for unmanned systems, Tessier said.

In addition, a centerpiece at the Lockheed Martin booth will be the F-35 cockpit demonstrator. Although the demonstrator has been on display at previous CANSECs, the device is always a crowd favourite.

For the aviation market, CANSEC 2016 exhibitor Nammo of Norway has developed ammunition specifically for the F-35. Norway received its first F-35 last fall and with that Nammo started delivering its 25mm APEX (Armor Piercing Ammunition Explosive) ammunition, designed to counter a range of threats. The ammunition is a next-generation armour-piercing, high explosive round; APEX is specifically tailored for the multi-role functions on the F-35. Company officials point out that the ammunition can be used for all types of missions, and against air, navy and ground targets. Nammo wants to eventually see APEX being selected by all partner countries to F-35. 

Providing the RCAF with an aggressor fleet to train its pilots is the goal of the Contracted Air Services project or CATS.

CATS will run over an initial 10-year period, followed by the option to continue for another five years. The contract could be worth up to $1.5 billion over that period of time.

CATS will provide aircraft to simulate hostile threats for ground and naval forces as well as fighter pilots. The project also provides aircraft for training of forward air controllers as well as planes to tow targets and carry electronic warfare systems for various training scenarios.

“The contract is expected to be awarded by the end of 2016,” Pierre-Alain Bujold, spokesman for Public Services and Procurement Canada, told Esprit de Corps. Three bids were submitted, Public Services and Procurement Canada noted, but for competitive reasons the department will not release details.

Discovery Air Defence, which already provides such services to the German and Canadian militaries and will highlight at CANSEC its capabilities in this area, has submitted its bid.

CAE has joined forces with the U.S.-based Draken International to bid on CATS. Aerospace industry representatives also believe that the U.S.-based Airborne Tactical Advantage Company, owned by Textron, submitted a bid, but the firm is not commenting at this time. 

Garry Venman, vice-president of business development and government relations at Discovery Air Defence, said the firm has now provided over 55,000 hours of airborne training services for the Canadian Armed Forces, the German armed forces and other air forces worldwide.

The Nammo 25mm APEX projectile is an armor-piercing, high explosive multi-role ammunition for use with the US F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft. It was designed for use with the General Dynamics GAU- 12/U Equalizer, a five-barrel 25 mm Gatling-type rotary cannon that is also being used on American fighter jets such as the AV-8B Harrier II, airborne gunships such as the Lockheed AC-130, and land-based fighting vehicles.

The Nammo 25mm APEX projectile is an armor-piercing, high explosive multi-role ammunition for use with the US F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft. It was designed for use with the General Dynamics GAU- 12/U Equalizer, a five-barrel 25 mm Gatling-type rotary cannon that is also being used on American fighter jets such as the AV-8B Harrier II, airborne gunships such as the Lockheed AC-130, and land-based fighting vehicles.

He said the company has its eye on a potential $3 billion global market for airborne training services, which includes potential contracts in the U.S. The company has a U.S.-based subsidiary and is also looking at markets from Australia to the Middle East. It has provided such services to Canada since 2005 and started delivering similar services to the German military in 2015.

 “The Germans are quite happy with the service,” Venman said. “We think we can easily expand to offer services to additional countries in NATO. We’re seeing positive concrete evidence that air forces are starting to seriously consider the role a contracted adversary plays in their future training environments.”

Venman said that customers are requiring more capable adversaries as they transition to next-generation fighters. The actual aircraft performing such roles are second to the technology offered. 

“The real driver will be the sensor technology, not necessarily the aircraft performance,” Venman explained. “Our strategy is to develop our in-house engineering capabilities to have solutions to provide technology insertions into these platforms which make them a representative training adversary,” he added.

While firms wait for the RCAF to proceed with the Joint Uninhabited Surveillance and Target Acquisition System (JUSTAS) — a contract not expected to be awarded until 2020 — companies are highlighting the roles smaller UAVs can play. Textron has both its Shadow 200 Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System, used by the U.S. Army and Marine Corps, as well as those UAVs from its subsidiary Aerosonde.

The name of CANSEC 2016 exhibitor Pratt and Whitney Canada, a subsidiary of United Technologies, is synonymous with aircraft engines. Its engines are powering the C-27J aircraft for instance, but the company also continues to dominate the helicopter market as well. The firm, based in Quebec, recently announced that its PT6B-37A turboshaft engines will power 25 new AgustaWestland AW119Kx helicopters for a U.S.-Chinese project. The aircraft will be used to establish a Chinese air ambulance capability. The PT6 turboshaft engine family powers more helicopters than any other engine in its power class, Pratt and Whitney has noted. 

Pratt and Whitney’s F135 propulsion system is also the engine of choice for Lockheed Martin’s F-35 fighter jet. (The F135 is the derivative of the company’s proven F119-PW-100 engine.)

CANSEC 2016 exhibitor Rockwell Collins Canada says it plans to highlight a number of systems including: its made-in-Canada Wideband HF communication system; the ARC-210, an airborne programmable software defined radio; Pro Line Fusion, which uses commercial-military dual-use avionics for helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft; the SmartBlade Radio, which provides flexible, space efficient communications
for air traffic control applications; TruNet networked communications solutions for air, land and sea customized networks; simulation and training solutions including the firm’s virtual reality aircraft maintenance training demonstration; and high performance, digital GPS anti-jam receivers.

Rockwell Collins was already selected to provide satellite communications terminals for the Canadian Army. In the fall of 2014 it was part of a General Dynamics Canada team that was provided a contract to upgrade more than 11,000 Canadian military combat radios. Delivery of the upgraded radios will continue until next year. 

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CANSEC ‘16: Naval Technology on display

By David Pugliese

From the April Issue (Volume 23, Issue 3)

DAVID PUGLIESE PREVIEWS THE LATEST IN NAVAL WARFARE THAT WILL BE EXHIBITED AT THIS YEAR’S DEFENCE AND SECURITY TRADE SHOW

A crew member of HMCS Saskatoon conducts force protection when approaching the harbour of Ensanada, Mexico on March 5, 2016 during Operation CARIBBE. Canada contributes ships and CP-140 Aurora aircraft to the joint interagency effort to prevent illicit trafficking in the Caribbean sea, the eastern Pacific Ocean, and the coastal waters of Central America. (DND)

A crew member of HMCS Saskatoon conducts force protection when approaching the harbour of Ensanada, Mexico on March 5, 2016 during Operation CARIBBE. Canada contributes ships and CP-140 Aurora aircraft to the joint interagency effort to prevent illicit trafficking in the Caribbean sea, the eastern Pacific Ocean, and the coastal waters of Central America. (DND)

From a naval perspective, this year’s CANSEC defence trade show will be dominated by a couple of procurements, the main one being the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) project.

CANSEC 2016 will be held at the EY Centre in Ottawa on May 25–26 and comes just months after Public Services and Procurement Canada announced a number of key proposed changes to the program to acquire a fleet of Canadian Surface Combatants.

The original National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS) had one firm handling the design and integration of combat systems and another designing the warship. Irving Shipbuilding on the East Coast would be the prime contractor and do the actual construction.

But the federal government has now proposed changing how the acquisition is structured. Irving’s role remains the same. But instead of developing a combat system and vessel design, Canada will use an existing off-the-shelf foreign ship design that already has a proven and integrated combat system.

The government has also compiled a list of equipment and technologies in 24 main areas that Canadian companies are expected to provide for the $26-billion fleet of surface combatants. Some of those areas involve navigation, sonar and electro-optical systems for the ships that will form the backbone of the Royal Canadian Navy in future.

Government officials believe as many as 80 domestic companies might be able to contribute, although a number of firms are already sounding the alarm that the proposed changes might hurt their chances to obtain work.

HMCS Halifax transits the Caribbean Sea in January 2010 as part of OP HESTIA, Canada's humanitarian assistance and disaster response operation to aid the survivors of Haiti's devastating earthquake that destroyed much of the country's infrastructure. Entering the service in 1992, the RCN's 12 Halifax-class multi-role patrol frigates are considered the backbone of the fleet currently. Originally designed for anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare, the Halifax-class Modernization/Frigate Life Extension project has enhanced the ships' capabilities to ensure the frigates remain effective throughout their service life. (U.S. Navy)

HMCS Halifax transits the Caribbean Sea in January 2010 as part of OP HESTIA, Canada's humanitarian assistance and disaster response operation to aid the survivors of Haiti's devastating earthquake that destroyed much of the country's infrastructure. Entering the service in 1992, the RCN's 12 Halifax-class multi-role patrol frigates are considered the backbone of the fleet currently. Originally designed for anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare, the Halifax-class Modernization/Frigate Life Extension project has enhanced the ships' capabilities to ensure the frigates remain effective throughout their service life. (U.S. Navy)

In November, Public Services and Procurement Canada announced the results of the pre-qualification process, which it pointed out is the first step in the competitive procurement process to select a combat systems integrator (CSI) and a warship designer for the CSC. For the combat systems integrator, the pre-qualified firms are:

·         Atlas Elektronik GmbH

·         DCNS SA

·         Lockheed Martin Canada

·         Saab Australia Pty Ltd.

·         Selex ES S.p.A.

·         Thales Nederland B.V.

·         ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems GmbH

 

For the warship designer, the pre-qualified firms are:

·         Alion-JJMA Corp.

·         BAE Systems Surface Ships Limited

·         DCNS SA

·         Fincantieri S.p.A. Naval Vessels Business Unit

·         Navantia SA

·         Odense Maritime Technology

·         ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems GmbH

All are expected to have a major presence at CANSEC 2016 as they position themselves in the minds of government, industry and the Royal Canadian Navy in the prelude to submitting bids for the CSC.

Some like Atlas Elektronik have a strong resumé in CSI. The firm, which a number of years ago established a Canadian subsidiary Atlas Elektronik Canada Ltd, has in past CANSEC shows been promoting its capabilities to supply sonars and other sensors, command and control systems and underwater vehicles. In addition, the firm has a long history in counter-mine capabilities and torpedo and anti-torpedo weapons.

Over the decades, the firm has worked successfully with various shipyards to deliver combat systems integration on programs similar to CSC. Those contributions include Germany’s F124 frigate and the F125 frigate. Overall, the firm has noted that it has provided command and control systems to more than 20 navies.

The company also points out its Canadian subsidiary is strategically located in Victoria, BC with close proximity to the RCN’s Pacific fleet.

The French firm DCNS finds itself down-selected in both the CSI and warship design categories, an enviable position to be in for sure.

In April 2014 DCNS incorporated a wholly-owned Canadian subsidiary, DCNS Technologies Canada, with headquarters in Ottawa to develop naval engineering and industrial partnerships in the country. DCNS promotes its more than 50 years of experience in designing, developing and integrating combat system for various naval platforms.

In April 2013, the French naval destroyer Aquitaine crossed the Atlantic and docked at Halifax, Nova Scotia, coming from Brazil and New York and before continuing her journey to Iceland.  The FREMM's innovative design and versatility allow full operation of the ship with a crew less than half the size of the crew of previous generation ships with similar missions. It is being marketed as a proven design for the CSC. (DCNS)

In April 2013, the French naval destroyer Aquitaine crossed the Atlantic and docked at Halifax, Nova Scotia, coming from Brazil and New York and before continuing her journey to Iceland.  The FREMM's innovative design and versatility allow full operation of the ship with a crew less than half the size of the crew of previous generation ships with similar missions. It is being marketed as a proven design for the CSC. (DCNS)

 The French government and DCNS have been marketing the French multi-missions frigate (FREMM) in Canada since 2012 in preparation for CSC. In 2013 the lead ship of the class, the French Navy’s Aquitaine, visited Halifax and was toured by Canadian politicians and military personnel.

Olivier Casenave-Péré, president of DCNS Technologies Canada Inc., has pointed out the value of the FREMM design to Canadian taxpayers. Not only is it a state-of-the-art, combat-capable ship, it is proven in other navies. “From the taxpayers’ point of view, it’s much safer to start from a proven design and adapt it,” he has noted.

In addition, DCNS officials have also pointed out that if Canada chooses the firm for CSC work, the ships will be built, customized, and maintained in Canada.

L-3 has in the past been also positioning itself for CSC work. “L-3 has established a dedicated group, L-3 CMS as a single point of contact for L-3’s naval products and services,” Wendy Allerton, director of L-3 CMS, noted in a statement late last year to Esprit de Corps.

Added Allerton: “L-3 MAPPS’s globally successful Integrated Platform Management System is a key part of L-3’s overall capabilities being offered for CSC which include electronic systems integration; information assurance; integrated shipboard communications systems; underwater system solutions; turnkey platform marine electrical and electronic systems; power conversion and distribution systems; data link systems; aviation lighting and weapon storage and handling solutions; EO/IR surveillance sighting systems; and through life service support.”

Firms, such as MBDA, also see a possible role on CSC. It is interested in providing Aster as a potential air defence system for the surface combatant fleet. If selected, the firm has noted it would offer a manufacturing and production facility in Canada. Aster 15 is a short to medium range missile and Aster 30 is a short to long range, so the company has various options for the RCN. In addition, MBDA offers CAMM-ER (Common Anti-air Modular Missile Extended Range), which has an active RF seeker that provides all-weather performance with clutter rejection capabilities.

Irving Shipbuilding Inc., the prime contractor on the CSC as well as on the Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS), is in the process of further increasing its profile in the months leading up to CANSEC. In early March the company opened its new massive shipbuilding facility in the Halifax area for media tours.

The public relations strategy is to inform the Canadian public about what has been going on with the company over the last four years as it has been preparing for building vessels under the NSPS. Construction has now begun on AOPS.

“We not only built the facility but now we are up and running and the benefit of all of that prep work over the last four years is that we can efficiently go into shipbuilding,” Irving Shipbuilding President Kevin McCoy told journalists. In addition, McCoy has said that Irving is on schedule to deliver the first AOPS in 2018.

Irving noted that it has invested over $350 million to build what it is calling North America’s most modern shipyard, and more than 190 companies have been awarded more than $1 billion in contracts so far under NSPS.

While many in industry are focused on the Canadian Surface Combatant, Seaspan
is busy on the RCN’s new Joint Support Ship, with engineering work on that project underway.

Seaspan was selected in 2011 by the Conservative government to build the non-combat vessels as part of the NSPS. It hopes to eventually construct 17 ships, including various science vessels, a Polar-class icebreaker for the Canadian Coast Guard and the two Queenston-class Joint Support Ships (JSS) for the RCN.

CANSEC 2016 attendees can expect to see the firm highlight its new shipyard and its capabilities, with a focus on delivering on NSPS programs.

A rendering of the JSS, which will be built at Seaspan's Vancouver Shipyards. The class will provide the core capabilities of the old auxiliary oiler replenishment ships, including: provision of fuel, ammunition, spare parts, food, water, and other supplies; modern medical and dental care facilities, including an operating room; repair facilities and expertise to keep helicopters and other equipment functioning; and basic self-defence functions. (RENDERING COURTESY OF THYSSENKRUPP MARINE SYSTEMS CANADA)

A rendering of the JSS, which will be built at Seaspan's Vancouver Shipyards. The class will provide the core capabilities of the old auxiliary oiler replenishment ships, including: provision of fuel, ammunition, spare parts, food, water, and other supplies; modern medical and dental care facilities, including an operating room; repair facilities and expertise to keep helicopters and other equipment functioning; and basic self-defence functions. (RENDERING COURTESY OF THYSSENKRUPP MARINE SYSTEMS CANADA)

The company’s Vancouver yard currently employs around 600. When the $2.6 billion JSS project gets under way in earnest this number will increase to 1,300. Another 800 are in the company’s yard in Victoria, BC. That facility will do some of the finishing work for the ships. The first JSS is expected to be operating in 2020, with the second in 2021.

Seaspan is also already at work on the federal government’s offshore fisheries science vessels, another project it will highlight at CANSEC 2016.

Rival shipyard Chantier Davie Canada Inc., based in Lévis, Quebec, will also be front-and-centre at CANSEC 2016, promoting its Project Resolve vessel to provide the RCN with an interim supply ship. This Resolve-class ship will fill the supply vessel gap for the Navy until the JSS is fully operational.

Under the contract, Davie would provide a civilian crew to operate the interim ship; Royal Canadian Navy personnel would be on board to handle communications and the actual transfer of supplies and fuel to warships.

“This is actually a full services agreement,” Alex Vicefield, the CEO of Davie’s parent firm, has explained to Esprit de Corps. “We’ll actually be running the ship, so it’ll be our captain and our crew onboard; we’ll be doing the hotel operations, including the catering and so on.”

The company is converting the container ship Astérix into an interim supply vessel. Conversion is estimated to take around 15 months to complete. After it’s converted, the Astérix will be able to accommodate a crew of 200 as well as helicopters.

Currently, the Canadian government is only committed to one interim supply ship, but Davie is prepared to provide a second on short notice if needed. Vicefield has also noted that the ship could play a role in humanitarian relief operations if needed.

Visitors to CANSEC 2016 will also see Chantier Davie use the trade show to drive home its unsolicited bid to obtain more federal government shipbuilding contracts.

In the midst of CANSEC 2015, Davie launched a media push to highlight that it had offered to save the Conservative government $500 million on the construction of its new Polar-class icebreaker. The offer had been made six months earlier but with a large amount of media attention at the trade show, the company highlighted its bold proposal that was designed to try to take the work away from Seaspan.

Vicefield pointed out at the time that the firm could begin work immediately on the new icebreaker and have it delivered in two years. In addition, the cost was guaranteed.

Then Conservative government Public Works Minister Diane Finley used CANSEC as the venue to reject Davie’s offer.

This year, Chantier Davie is not waiting for CANSEC to highlight its push for more federal government shipbuilding work.

The ATLAS Naval Combat System (ANCS) is a command and weapon control system of the latest generation. The German navy is equipping its new F125 frigate with the ANCS. Thanks to the modular structure of the ANCS, it can be adapted rapidly to different ships and varying requirements. It has all the necessary interfaces to sensors, effectors and communications facilities, with which it can be integrated into network-based operations. (ATLAS ELEKTRONIK CANADA) 

The ATLAS Naval Combat System (ANCS) is a command and weapon control system of the latest generation. The German navy is equipping its new F125 frigate with the ANCS. Thanks to the modular structure of the ANCS, it can be adapted rapidly to different ships and varying requirements. It has all the necessary interfaces to sensors, effectors and communications facilities, with which it can be integrated into network-based operations. (ATLAS ELEKTRONIK CANADA) 

In late February it submitted an unsolicited package of options to the federal government to provide icebreakers and multi-purpose ships for the Canadian Coast Guard. The bid outlined how it could deliver a Polar-class icebreaker in 18 months; it also proposed the construction of three smaller icebreakers and two multi-purpose ships for patrolling, search and rescue, and science research. But the package, which offers a variety of various options, is designed to be outside the NSPS and, as such, does not technically violate that strategy.

Project Resolve will see the transformation of the freight vessel MV Asterix into a Resolve-class AOR ship for the RCN. This vessel is to be used in the interim until the new Queenston-class Joint Supply Ship is fully operational in 2019 if no production delays are incurred. The conversion is expected to take less than two years, with the new vessel ready for delivery in the summer of 2017. (Project Resolve Inc.)

Project Resolve will see the transformation of the freight vessel MV Asterix into a Resolve-class AOR ship for the RCN. This vessel is to be used in the interim until the new Queenston-class Joint Supply Ship is fully operational in 2019 if no production delays are incurred. The conversion is expected to take less than two years, with the new vessel ready for delivery in the summer of 2017. (Project Resolve Inc.)

The Polar-class icebreaker would be in addition to the one that will be eventually constructed at Seaspan. The medium-class icebreakers being proposed would be for use along the coasts and in the St. Lawrence. The multi-purpose vessels could be used by both the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Coast Guard.

Furthermore, the ships could be either a new build or converted from existing vessels, according to the Chantier Davie proposal. The key would be that they are relatively low cost and can be delivered fast, according to company officials.

“This is a fast-track solution providing enhanced capabilities at a fraction of the new building price,” the Chantier Davie proposal noted of the possibility of converting existing vessels.

The Liberal government has said it is not interested. But Chantier Davie will continue to promote such options, including at CANSEC 2016.

Along with the Canadian firms who are worried that the proposed changes by the government in the Canadian Surface Combatant acquisition project will not provide for high value work for domestic firms, year’s CANSEC could prove to be a very interesting event.