L-3 MAS in Mirabel, Quebec has been awarded a contract to inspect and modify the structure of the U.S. Navy's F/A-18 Super Hornet fleet. (U.S. Navy)

L-3 MAS in Mirabel, Quebec has been awarded a contract to inspect and modify the structure of the U.S. Navy's F/A-18 Super Hornet fleet. (U.S. Navy)

L-3 Communications announced that it has been awarded a contract to provide depot-level maintenance (DLM) for the U.S. Navy’s F/A-18 A/B/C/D fleet.

The F/A-18 DLM contract provides the U.S. Navy with the additional capacity it needs to carry out F/A-18 A/B/C/D structural life-extension modifications and inspections that will significantly improve the availability of strike fighter assets to meet operational commitments, L-3 noted in a news release. L-3’s Platform Integration Division in Waco, Texas, will serve as the prime contractor, while L-3 MAS in Quebec will be responsible for inspection and modification of the aircraft structure, as well as associated engineering support.

“L-3 is honoured to be selected by the U.S. Navy to conduct F/A-18 A/B/C/D life-extension and depot maintenance support work to help increase the Navy’s number of Ready-For-Tasking aircraft,” Mark Von Schwarz, president of L-3’s Aerospace Systems business segment, which includes the MAS and Platform Integration divisions, said in a statement. “By combining Platform Integration’s naval aviation experience with MAS’s world-class F/A-18 life-extension and depot maintenance expertise, L-3 demonstrates its ability to differentiate itself through collaborative capabilities in applying experience, performance and innovation to help a longtime valued customer achieve its goals.”

L-3 Platform Integration has maintained a long-standing relationship with the U.S. Navy and is currently the Navy’s preferred provider of P-3 DLM, the company noted.

L-3 MAS, headquartered in Mirabel, is the in-service support (ISS) provider for a variety of fleets, including Canada’s CF-18 Hornet fighter, CC-150 Polaris transport, CH-148 Cyclone maritime helicopter and CT-114 Tutor demonstration aircraft.

C4i Training & Technology of Calgary has signed a large multi-year contract with a Middle Eastern country to outfit its armed forces with C4i’s MILSIM simulation training software.

The company is not naming the country that purchased the product. But the contract marks the third time a Middle Eastern nation has ordered C4i’s MILSIM products, according to the firm.

MILSIM is a multi-purpose computer simulation tool designed to train commanders and staff.

“The signing represents a substantial step forward for our customer; our MILSIM software will be used in their Command and General Staff College, to help future senior leaders,” Clive Morgan, C4i Vice President of Customer Solutions, noted in a statement. “This is complemented by multiple mobile training systems for deployment to front line units for tactical and operational planning and training purposes.”

MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates received the go ahead from Airbus Defence and Space to proceed with the development of multiple communication subsystems to be integrated into the Inmarsat-6 mobile communication satellites. The full contract is expected to be valued in excess of $20 million.

The University of British Columbia recently announced it will receive a $2 million investment from Seaspan Shipyards over the next seven years to support innovative teaching and research in the naval architecture and marine engineering programs at the UBC faculty of applied science. As a result, two new UBC chair positions will be created, one in naval architecture and one in marine systems engineering, according to a news release.

The investment is a result of Seaspan’s “value proposition” obligations under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS). As part of this agreement, Seaspan is committed to spending 0.5 per cent of each resulting NSPS contract to contribute to the development of a sustainable marine industry in Canada.

Team Spartan members General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada and Finmeccanica have announced the creation of a new joint venture to provide long-term in-service support (ISS) for the C-27J aircraft in Canada.

Managed by General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada, Spartan Aviation Services will be the Canadian ISS integrator if the C-27J is selected as the Royal Canadian Air Force’s next fixed-wing search and rescue (FWSAR) aircraft, the companies say.

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.

“It is very important to keep this venture Canadian – controlled by a strong Canadian firm coupled with the original equipment manufacturer as an integral partner in supporting the fleet for the long term,” David Ibbetson, General Manager, General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada, said in a statement. “Together we’re confident that we can deliver a highly capable and cost-effective solution to the Royal Canadian Air Force.”

On behalf of Swedish defence contractor Saab AB, Rheinmetall will be equipping a total of 88 Gripen NG (next generation) fighter aircraft armed with the BK27 automatic cannon with a newly developed linkless ammunition feeding system.

A C-27J sits on the tarmac of the Gatineau Airport, just a short 20-minute drive from downtown Ottawa. A contender in the restarted fixed-wing search and rescue (FWSAR) procurement project, the Team Spartan aircraft made a pit-stop in the nation`s capital on December 11, 2015 to showcase the plane`s capabilities to interested parties. (Richard Lawrence)

A C-27J sits on the tarmac of the Gatineau Airport, just a short 20-minute drive from downtown Ottawa. A contender in the restarted fixed-wing search and rescue (FWSAR) procurement project, the Team Spartan aircraft made a pit-stop in the nation`s capital on December 11, 2015 to showcase the plane`s capabilities to interested parties. (Richard Lawrence)

Brazil and Sweden — one new customer and one longstanding one — will soon have at their disposal Gripen NGs armed with the Mauser 27mm revolver cannon from Rheinmetall Oberndorf, according to the firm. Delivery will take place during the 2017–2025 timeframe, and includes service support and spare parts, Rheinmetall noted. It will also offer the ammunition for the weapon system.

The linked ammunition-feeding version of the gas-operated revolver cannon serves as the standard weapon in the multi-role Tornado, while the Eurofighter features the linkless version, according to Rheinmetall.

Discovery Air Defence has been busy. The company, which has a contract with the Department of National Defence to assist in the training of CF-18 pilots, will transfer its operations to a hangar located at the Saguenay-Bagotville Airport in Quebec.

That solution was proposed in order to allow the company to continue to provide its services while giving more operational flexibility in regards to base infrastructure. Colonel Darcy Molstad, Commander of CFB Bagotville, said in a statement that, “the move by Discovery Air Defence into the incubation hangar at the civilian airport will allow us to free up floor space to support the different units at the Base and to answer their needs. Such proximity to Discovery Air Defence is a major asset for the training services they are responsible for. We are very happy that they are in a new location, very close to their current location.”

“We are very excited about this important investment in the Saguenay region and to offer the next-generation of combat support services for the Canadian Armed Forces,” added Didier Toussaint, Group President of Government Services, Discovery Air. “Working with our partners at Promotion Saguenay and 3 Wing Bagotville, this new, state-of-the-art hangar represents the next phase of expanding our aircraft maintenance Centre of Excellence in Bagotville and the continued growth of the aerospace industry in Saguenay.”

Discovery Air Defence also recently deployed with RCAF CF-18s to Exercise Combat Archer at Tyndall Air Force Base in the U.S. DA Defence’s Alpha Jets executed numerous Red Air missions providing dissimilar air combat training for CF-18, F-22, F-35, and F-15 aircrew during a three-week deployment in Florida, which ended on February 5, the firm noted.

“They [DA Defence pilots] are Canadian-trained and are some of our most qualified pilots — utmost professionals,” LCol Dave Turenne, Commander of 425 Squadron, said. “Those guys are going to do exactly what we need them to do, by providing the presentations and understanding the exact things we’re looking for in training.”

The federal government announced in July that Mack Defense, LLC, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, had been awarded two contracts to provide standard military pattern trucks and related equipment for the Canadian Forces.

Assembly will take place in a Sainte-Claire, Quebec, plant operated by Prevost, one of the firms partnered with Mack.

The overall contract for the project, known by its military acronym as MSVS SMP, is worth $834 million.

In January 2016 Discovery Air Defence deployed its Alpha Jets and pilots to Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, on a three-week deployment with Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18s. The Alpha Jets executed numerous Red Air missions, providing dissimilar air combat training for CF-18, F-22, F-35, and F-15 aircrews as part of Exercise COMBAT ARCHER. (DA DEFENCE)

In January 2016 Discovery Air Defence deployed its Alpha Jets and pilots to Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, on a three-week deployment with Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18s. The Alpha Jets executed numerous Red Air missions, providing dissimilar air combat training for CF-18, F-22, F-35, and F-15 aircrews as part of Exercise COMBAT ARCHER. (DA DEFENCE)

The new Mack trucks destined for the Canadian Armed Forces were put through cold temperature testing at the end of January. The tests at the “cold chamber” at the National Research Council’s facility in Ottawa were successful, said Department of National Defence officials.

The first delivery of the trucks and equipment is planned for summer 2017, and deliveries are expected to be completed by fall 2018. With the ability to carry 9.5 tonnes, the Standard Military Pattern trucks are the backbone of the Canadian Forces truck fleet, the federal government noted.

The Marine Environmental Observation Prediction and Response (MEOPAR) network and Irving Shipbuilding Inc. recently announced the recipients of $1.8 million to support nine new ocean research projects that align with MEOPAR’s aim to strengthen Canada’s ability to anticipate and respond to marine risk. Irving Shipbuilding Inc. partnered with MEOPAR to contribute $1 million toward the proposal.

Irving Shipbuilding’s funding is pursuant to its Value Proposition obligation under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy; the firm is committed to spending 0.5% of contract revenues with the aim of creating a sustainable marine industry across Canada. 

“Ensuring Canada has a sustainable and vibrant marine industry is a priority for Irving Shipbuilding under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy,” said Kevin McCoy, president of Irving Shipbuilding. “We are proud to work with MEOPAR to support leading edge research across the country that can help achieve this goal.”

Created in 2012 by the federal government, the MEOPAR network aims to build Canada’s capacity to anticipate and respond to marine risk by financing research and supporting skilled personnel with the needed expertise. Among the projects selected for funding include the monitoring of marine plastics in Canada’s north and the use of synthetic aperture radar-based systems for monitoring and predicting sea ice conditions.

 

 

Email dpugliese@shaw.ca with your industry news. You can also follow him at Twitter.com/davidpugliese and at http://ottawacitizen.com/category/news/national/defence-watch

 

 

By David Pugliese

From the March Issue (Volume 23, Issue 2)

MDA will provide upgrades to the ground systems supporting the radar surveillance systems on the RCAF's fleet of CP-140s. (Wikipedia)

MDA will provide upgrades to the ground systems supporting the radar surveillance systems on the RCAF's fleet of CP-140s. (Wikipedia)

MBDA announced on February 8 that it has commenced deliveries of a quantity of Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missiles (ASRAAM) for the United Kingdom’s F-35B aircraft.

The first missile was delivered to the U.S. in January in conjunction with BAE Systems (the UK’s F-35 weapon integration lead). ASRAAM will be the first UK missile to arm the F-35 and its integration within the F-35 System Development and Demonstration (SDD) phase of the program will give the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy’s F-35s a highly capable, passive, Within Visual Range air-to-air capability, MBDA officials noted.

British Defence Minister Philip Dunne welcomed the news from MBDA saying in a statement the upcoming work to integrate the MBDA Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile onto the F-35 “will provide a state of the art weapon for both our RAF and Royal Navy pilots.”

These test missiles will be used during 2016 for a series of flight trials and air-launched firings that are a key step towards the Initial Operating Capability of the aircraft by the UK. The trials will include environmental data gathering, safe separation from the aircraft and weapon integration with the F-35’s on-board systems. It will also involve weapon firing trials.

Kongsberg Maritime has been selected by L-3 MAPPS to provide the CCTV system for the Royal Canadian Navy’s Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS). L-3 MAPPS is one of the Tier 1 suppliers to Irving Shipbuilding, the prime contractor behind the AOPS program. Kongsberg Maritime has over 70 employees in Dartmouth, Vancouver and St. John’s, 190 employees in the UK and approximately 4,600 total across the world.

“Further to our recent CCTV supply for the Halifax-class frigates IPMS (Integrated Platform Management System) upgrade, we are delighted to be able to leverage from our proven marine & naval camera technologies to support L-3 MAPPS, Irving Shipbuilding and RCN on the prestigious AOPS Program which is a key milestone in the renewal of Canada’s combatant fleet,” David Fleming, Camera Systems Manager for Kongsberg Maritime, said in a statement.

Forming a key part of the IPMS, the CCTV system will provide the crew with real time video surveillance to assist with mission critical operations as well as providing increased safety, security and situational awareness on board the AOPS, the firm noted in a statement.

Deliverables from Kongsberg Maritime will include a combination of proven harsh environment CCTV cameras and cameras that have been adapted to meet the demands of RCN and an Arctic environment. That includes an upgraded, high definition, version of the proven Kongsberg Maritime Helicopter Operations Surveillance System (HOSS), which will assist in monitoring of the take-off and landing operations off the CH-148 Cyclone helicopters.

Kongsberg recently delivered a new CCTV system for the U.S. Coast Guard’s Polar Star heavy icebreaker.

MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates of Richmond, BC, signed a contract amendment for $3 million with the Department of National Defence to provide upgrades to the ground systems supporting the radar surveillance systems on the RCAF’s fleet of CP-140s. Those systems were developed by MDA.

MDA’s radar surveillance system provides users with a high resolution imaging capability that can detect, locate, and classify land and marine-based objects, such as vehicles and ships.

Rolls-Royce announced that it had achieved a significant milestone for the Royal Navy’s new Type 26 Global Combat Ship program. At a recent ceremony in Bristol the company marked the completion of a successful factory acceptance test for the first MT30 gas turbine for the Type 26 Global Combat Ship in the presence of the UK Minister for Defence Procurement Philip Dunne MP, and representatives of prime contractor BAE Systems.

Rolls-Royce has signed a contract to supply MT30 gas turbines for the first three Royal Navy Type 26 Global Combat Ships. The company has also signed Design Development Agreements (DDAs) with BAE Systems for steering gear, stabilizers, and mission bay handling equipment. There is also a DDA in place for diesel generator sets to power the ship’s electric drive system, Rolls-Royce noted.

In a statement, Don Roussinos, Rolls-Royce, President – Naval, said: “Successful completion of the factory acceptance test is a significant achievement for everyone involved in the Type 26 Program. Producing 36 to 40 megawatts the MT30 gas turbine is the world’s most powerful in-service marine gas turbine with the highest power density and will deliver a high power output in a compact space — an essential factor for naval propulsion.”

The factory acceptance test, which has to be completed before the gas turbine can be delivered, was carried out at the Rolls-Royce Test Facility in Bristol. The engine was put through a week of rigorous performance tests, witnessed by representatives from BAE Power Systems.

The MT30s are also being installed in the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales. They are also in service with the U.S. Navy and have been selected for the Republic of Korea Navy’s latest frigate program.

Rolls Royce officials have noted that while the MT30 is built in its UK manufacturing facilities, the Type 26’s mission bay handling equipment is produced exclusively in the company’s Peterborough, Ont., marine manufacturing center. 

The Oerlikon Skyguard 3 air defence system was recently bought by the Royal Thai Army. The system`s armament includes an Oerlikon Twin Gun GDF 007, VSHORAD missile launchers, and an Oerlikon Revolver Gun Mk2 towed. (RHEINMETALL DEFENSE)

The Oerlikon Skyguard 3 air defence system was recently bought by the Royal Thai Army. The system`s armament includes an Oerlikon Twin Gun GDF 007, VSHORAD missile launchers, and an Oerlikon Revolver Gun Mk2 towed. (RHEINMETALL DEFENSE)

For the first time, the Royal Thai Army has awarded Rheinmetall a major contract for air defence technology. The multi-million euro order encompasses four latest-generation Skyguard systems.

In all, the group’s Swiss subsidiary Rheinmetall Air Defence will be supplying Thailand with four Oerlikon Skyguard 3 fire control systems and eight 35mm Oerlikon Twin Gun GDF 007 anti-aircraft cannons. The order also includes Rheinmetall’s unique Ahead airburst ammunition and additional services. Delivery will take place between 2017 and 2020.

A key element of the modernization program consists of equipping the missile/gun air defence systems with advanced radar technology.

Besides a new search radar, the Skyguard 3 systems will be outfitted (among other things) with a new target tracking radar, a latest-generation friend-foe identification system as well as cutting-edge electronic warfare components. The missile launcher will be upgraded with a new state-of-the-art electronic pod, which will enhance the system’s missile capability. Logistical support will also be improved.

Rheinmetall has also received a contract to modernize air defence system of an undisclosed international customer.

Irving Shipbuilding has fired back at the CBC about its news report detailing problems with the Canadian Coast Guard’s mid-shore patrol ships.

CBC cited complaints about faulty wiring and premature corrosion on the new Hero-class, 43-metre patrol vessels. Other complaints included polluted water tanks, faulty pipes, and a gearbox failure. Such issues could endanger the safety of the crew, the CBC noted.

Irving responded to the CBC report through a statement, noting that only “minor and routine” issues have been raised about the mid-shore patrol ships and it has worked with the Coast Guard to deal with these.

Irving acknowledged that five sections of cable, less than 500 metres of wiring, had to be replaced. But considering how much wiring is in the ship, “No reasonable person would call this ‘faulty wiring’,” Irving responded in its statement.

Irving has also noted that the mid-shore patrol vessel design is a proven one and that it has been certified by experts at Lloyds Registry and the Canadian government.

“The CBC identified the potential for problems in heavy ice conditions,” Irving also noted. “However, these operations are not designed or meant for operations in heavy ice. They are designed to be fast patrol ships.”

The French Ministry of Defence has launched the Aster Block 1 NT program. NT stands for new technology and the goal is to modernize the SAMP/T ground based air defence system as well as its associated Aster missile.

The contract was awarded to the EUROSAM consortium, which includes MBDA and Thales. It calls for the development of a new version of the Aster 30 Block 1 missile, referred to as Aster B1 NT.

Airbus will buy the Navtech group of companies, which provide flight operations solutions. Navtech serves more than 400 aircraft operators and aviation services customers worldwide with a suite of flight ops products, including electronic flight bag (EFB) solutions, aeronautical charts, navigation data solutions, flight planning, aircraft performance, and crew planning solutions.

Navtech generates annual revenues of around $42 million and employs over 250 employees, mainly based in Waterloo, Ont., and in Hersham and Cardiff, Wales, UK.

Fabrice Brégier, Airbus’ President and Chief Executive Officer, noted in a statement: “We are very pleased to welcome Navtech into our company, contributing its industry-leading portfolio of digital solutions and expert know-how.” He added: “This acquisition is further affirmation of Airbus’ digitalization and services growth strategies, and is a significant milestone to serve our existing and future customers.” 

 

 

From the February 2016 issue (Volume 23, Issue 1)

By Dave Pugliese

RaceRocks founder Scott Dewis (left) with Project Resolves' Spencer Fraser. 

RaceRocks founder Scott Dewis (left) with Project Resolves' Spencer Fraser. 

Discovery Air Defence Services Inc. recently achieved 55,000 hours of airborne training services for the Canadian Armed Forces, German Armed Forces and other air forces worldwide. This new milestone marks Discovery Air Defence’s continuous commitment as a trusted and proven provider of air combat training to Canadian and international customers, the firm points out. “2015 has been an important year for us,” Paul Bouchard, president of DA Defence, said in a statement. “The success of our Canadian and German programs, continued expansion of our U.S. operations and our tenth anniversary of training excellence make us extremely proud. I’m very excited about continuing to support our customers in 2016 and beyond.”

Garry Venman, VP of Business Development and Government Relations at DA Defence, noted that “55,000 hours of proven and trusted experience, successful international operations, and investments in game-changing aircraft, infrastructure and people continues to enable DA Defence to deliver the industry’s leading air combat solutions to customers worldwide.”

RaceRocks of Victoria, BC, recently signed a contract with Project Resolve
Inc. to act as the tier-one training provider for the Royal Canadian Navy’s Resolve-class auxiliary oiler replenishment (AOR) ship, MV Asterix, which is now under conversion at Chantier Davie Canada Inc. in Quebec.

RaceRocks had previously signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Project Resolve in September 2015. The LOI allowed RaceRocks to commence its activities and collaborate with Project Resolve on planning the training requirements until the Liberal government awarded, in late November, the contract to proceed with the ship conversion.

RaceRocks will now complete all activities required to deliver the requisite training systems for the Resolve-class AOR by the spring of 2017. The work will be executed by a pan-Canadian team with RaceRocks as prime, as well as with sub-contractors in Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec.

“It’s important to note that we did an extensive survey of the naval training service providers situated here in Canada and we determined very quickly that RaceRocks and its exclusive Atlantic partner, Modest Tree of Halifax, not only provide the most cutting-edge naval training solutions available, but are able to do so at a fraction of the cost,” Spencer Fraser, Project Resolve Inc CEO, said in a statement.

Germany has announced it will be buying more Boxer armoured fighting vehicles from Rheinmetall and Krauss-Maffei Wegmann. The German Bundeswehr will buy 131 Boxer vehicles. The Boxers will be configured for an armoured personnel carrier role. Delivery is slated to take place during the period 2017 to 2020.

The German military already has 272 Boxers. The Netherlands is also a partner in the cross-border Boxer program, having ordered a total of 200 vehicles.

Airbus Defence and Space has received a firm order from the French Defence Procurement Agency for a further eight A330 multi-role tanker transport (MRTT) aircraft. The aircraft constitute the second tranche of the multi-year contract for 12 A330 MRTTs signed by the French Ministry of Defence in November 2014 and bring the total firm order to nine, Airbus noted in a news release. The remaining three are scheduled to be confirmed in 2018, permitting deliveries of the 12 aircraft before 2025.

Paul Molina, head of Airbus Defence and Space Military Aircraft in Canada, announces the creation of AirPro on January 11, 2016. (richard lawrence)

Paul Molina, head of Airbus Defence and Space Military Aircraft in Canada, announces the creation of AirPro on January 11, 2016. (richard lawrence)

The first A330 MRTT will be delivered to France in 2018, followed by the second in 2019, and the remainder at a rate of one or two per year.

Jim Quick, president and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada, announced December 21 that the organization had appointed Dwayne Lucas as interim vice president of AIAC’s Pacific division while the association conducts a search for a permanent replacement for Jay Teichroeb. Teichroeb, who led AIAC Pacific since it was founded in 2013, left at the end of December.

Previously the executive vice president and chief operating officer of Cascade Aerospace and a brigadier general in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Lucas is a longstanding leader in the British Columbia aerospace industry, Quick pointed out.

L-3 Marine Systems UK recently announced it had been awarded a design development agreement from BAE Systems for the initial design and development activities to support ship integration of its Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS) for the UK Royal Navy’s Type 26 Global Combat Ship.

Using core technology developed by Montreal-based affiliate L-3 MAPPS, the company will perform the initial design and development activities to support ship integration at its facilities in Bristol, Burgess Hill and Barrow-in-Furness, the firm noted. The Type 26 Global Combat Ships are being designed by BAE Systems for the UK Ministry of Defence to replace the Type 23 frigates currently in service with the Royal Navy.

“Our advanced IPMS will enable these next-generation ships to achieve high levels of operational effectiveness under the most adverse conditions,” Roger Baker, general manager of L-3 Marine Systems UK, said in a statement.

The L-3 IPMS is based on proven and survivable control systems technology that has been delivered by L-3 MAPPS to over 160 ships and submarines in 18 navies worldwide.

In other news, L-3 WESCAM recently announced that a combined fleet of its MX-Series electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) imaging and targeting systems had successfully logged close to one million flight hours on board various U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) aircraft.

The 184 systems continue to actively support three key programs, with the initial turrets having been fielded in 2005, the firm noted. Currently, 27 of these turrets have logged over 10,000 flight hours each while requiring only minimal in-field servicing. L-3 WESCAM has delivered over 1,700 MXSeries systems to the U.S. DoD in support of a variety of different programs.

“L-3 WESCAM is proud to support the U.S. Department of Defense as it continues to execute critical missions in some of the most challenging battlefield environments,” Rod Till, vice president of customer service for L-3 WESCAM, said in a statement. “Our ongoing investment in supporting customer requirements has enabled the DoD to maintain an extremely high level of operational availability by calling on our dedicated field support representatives and customized in-service support plans.”

L-3 WESCAM sustains its customer support through the continuous addition of worldwide service resources, including the strategic placement of 14 worldwide authorized service centres, numerous training facilities, and on-site field support representatives.

HMCS Toronto leads a fleet of North Atlantic Treaty Organization ships through the Black Sea during Operation REASSURANCE in September 2014. The Halifax-class frigates are being upgraded with a Lockheed Martin combat system. (SGT Matthew McGregor, Combat Camera)

HMCS Toronto leads a fleet of North Atlantic Treaty Organization ships through the Black Sea during Operation REASSURANCE in September 2014. The Halifax-class frigates are being upgraded with a Lockheed Martin combat system. (SGT Matthew McGregor, Combat Camera)

Lockheed Martin Canada recently announced several key program milestones for the Royal Canadian Navy’s Halifax-class modernization (HCM) project.

The HCM project achieved First Article Acceptance, formal recognition that Lockheed Martin Canada’s combat system design meets the Navy’s performance requirements. First Article Acceptance was preceded by an extensive series of integration tests at the company’s Maritime Advanced Training and Test Site in Dartmouth, NS, the company pointed out.

Individual system acceptance of the Lockheed Martin Canada combat system has also been achieved on seven of Canada’s 12 Halifax-class frigates, the firm noted. The ships are: HMC Ships HalifaxCalgaryFrederictonWinnipegMontrealVancouver and, most recently, Charlottetown. The frigates completed a rigorous sea trial program to validate the combat system is ready to support the RCN’s critical missions.

“Our innovative combat management system, integration methodology, and Canadian supply chain form the largest component of the modernization project,” Rosemary Chapdelaine, vice president of Lockheed Martin Canada Mission Systems and Training, said in a statement. “Our team is thrilled to deliver Canadian-built, world-class technology to the Royal Canadian Navy.”

In Halifax, QRA Corp has started work to provide Lockheed Martin engineers with an advanced early-stage systems verification solution for the proactive development of increasingly complex cyber-physical designs.

The work brings together QRA Corp’s verification technology with Lockheed Martin’s large-scale system integration and design capabilities, thereby enabling QRA to push QVTrace’s rigorous analysis capabilities well beyond the level of efficiency and effectiveness of any tool before it, the firm noted in a news release.

“All large-scale system integrations will eventually proactively use technology similar to QVTrace,” Jordan Kyriakidis, QRA Corp CEO and president, said in a statement. “Although QVTrace is already an incredibly powerful tool for engineers, this work will help ensure it remains on the bleeding edge of innovation by taxing it with some of the most complex and demanding systems in the world. It’s an exciting time.”

To achieve this goal, QRA will evolve and deliver QVTrace, its flagship system verification tool, which enables engineers to target and detect errors within complex systems throughout the development cycle. By proactively ensuring critical system designs always satisfy their requirements, QVTrace will help Lockheed Martin engineers avoid costly reworks and potential catastrophic deployment failures by eliminating errors at the early stages of design, thus increasing systems confidence, reducing costs, and accelerating time to market, says QRA.

Seaspan announced in early January that Ian Brennan has joined the firm’s Vancouver Shipyards (VSY) as vice president of Supply Chain Management & Contracts. As part of Seaspan Shipyard’s executive team, Brennan will provide the strategic leadership and day-to-day oversight and direction of supply chain, warehousing and logistics, procurement, and contracts and subcontracts in support of new vessel construction at VSY.

“I am very pleased to welcome Ian to the team at Vancouver Shipyards,” said Brian Carter, president of Seaspan Shipyards. “Our commitment to invest in the right people is helping Seaspan change the course of shipbuilding on the West Coast of Canada as we proudly build the next generation of vessels for the men and women of the Canadian Coast Guard and Royal Canadian Navy under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS).”

Brennan has more than 27 years of experience in the shipbuilding and heavy project construction industries, and has worked on a number of major military procurement programs with Aircraft Carrier Alliance, BAE Systems Surface Fleet Solutions Inc. as well as Saint John Shipbuilding Limited.

Airbus Helicopters has delivered the first of Sweden’s NH90 aircraft configured for anti-submarine warfare duties. In total, 18 helicopters will be delivered. The fully qualified rotorcraft has an entirely customized mission system including underwater sonar, tactical radar and high cabin for improved interior space. 

From the January 2015 issue (Volume 22 Issue 12)

By David Pugliese

L-3 Wescam will provide the Austrian-based Airborne Technologies GmbH with four MX-10 electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) imaging systems for the UK National Police Air Service's (NPAS) newly procured P68 fixed-wing multi-mission aircraft. 

L-3 Wescam will provide the Austrian-based Airborne Technologies GmbH with four MX-10 electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) imaging systems for the UK National Police Air Service's (NPAS) newly procured P68 fixed-wing multi-mission aircraft. 

L-3 WESCAM announced December 7 that it has received an order from Austrian-based Airborne Technologies GmbH for four MX-10 electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) imaging systems to be installed on the UK National Police Air Service’s (NPAS) newly procured P68 fixed-wing aircraft. As the prime contractor and integrator for the NPAS fixed-wing program, Airborne Technologies will acquire and integrate L-3’s MX-10 with displays, a moving map and a digital video recorder, and will downlink the integrated solution into its own Airborne LINX mission system. MX-10 deliveries to Airborne Technologies will begin in March 2016, according to L-3 WESCAM.

“This order expands L-3’s presence in the police air support marketplace and adds to the number of MX-10 systems currently supporting tactical ISR missions throughout the UK,” Paul Jennison, vice president of government sales and business development for L-3 WESCAM, said in a statement. “We are very proud that our MX-10 has been selected as a key component of the fixed-wing fleet’s mission system and are looking forward to a long and successful partnership with both the UK NPAS and Airborne Technologies.”

Operating throughout England and Wales, L-3’s MX-10s will be configured with 4-axis stabilization and a suite of advanced sensors, including a four-field-of-view thermal imager, daylight continuous zoom TV, low-light continuous zoom TV and a 300-mm spotter. In addition, the system’s suite of MX-GEO technologies will provide accurate geographical data and advanced tracking assistance.

L-3 WESCAM’s MX-10 underwent extensive NPAS flight trials from both fixed- and rotary-wing platforms in 2014, which led to its selection in October 2014 for the high-profile NPAS EC135T2 helicopter upgrade program.

Lockheed Martin got some welcome news when the United Kingdom reaffirmed its commitment to the F-35 fighter jet. Not only will the UK stick to its plans to purchase 138 of the aircraft, but it now wants to accelerate the acquisition.

Meanwhile, F-35A pilots are training at a United States Air Force base in Utah on four full-mission simulators, all linked together. The training is for the 34th Fighter Squadron, which will be the first squadron to reach initial operational capability with the F-35. That is scheduled to happen in August 2016, according to the USAF.

“As a complement to live flights, the full-mission simulators present a secure, realistic environment for pilots to develop tactics and integrate the F-35 into the Air Force’s arsenal,” Lockheed Martin said in a statement.

Héroux-Devtek Inc. announced December 2 that it had renewed an important long-term contract with the U.S. Air Force to provide landing gear repair and overhaul services for the C-130, E-3 and KC-135R aircraft.

The long-term contract spans a period extending to the end of the U.S. government’s 2021 fiscal year in September 2021. Under the terms of the agreement, Héroux-Devtek is also responsible for the manufacturing and delivery of certain aftermarket components for these aircraft.

“This important multi-year agreement further confirms Héroux-Devtek’s status as a world leader in the R&O market for defence aircraft landing gear,” Gilles Labbé, president and CEO of Héroux-Devtek said in a statement. “Our proven track record for quality, on-time delivery and second-to-none customer service has fostered a solid relationship with the USAF, for which we have been providing R&O services for 45 years.”

Calian Technologies Ltd.’s Health Services team announced that Dr. Richard Birtwhistle was named the recipient of a Calian Research Award, along with a commitment of $105,000 over a three-year period. The announcement was made at the Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research (CIMVHR) 2015 Forum in Quebec City.

Dr. Birtwhistle is a professor in the Department of Family Medicine at Queen’s University, the director of the university’s Centre for Studies in Primary Care, and the chair and principal investigator of the Canadian Primary Care Sentinel Surveillance Network (CPCSSN), which has developed a central repository of data on chronic diseases from a network of primary care practitioners.

With this Calian Research Award, the scope of the CPCSSN database will be expanded to include several Primacy clinics and the addition of specific identifiers for military members, veterans and their families.  Primacy is a subsidiary of Calian, which exclusively manages the national clinic program for Loblaws with over 145 in-store medical clinics across Canada. 

“As a strong supporter of the Canadian Armed Forces and its members, Calian is pleased to support this innovative research. This database, the first of its kind in Canada, will eventually fuel evidence-based research to promote consistency of care and improved outcomes for serving military members, veterans and their families,” said Scott Murray, vice president of Health Services at Calian.

Meanwhile, the Composites and Defence Systems business of Morgan Advanced Materials has been awarded the Canadian CM735 combat helmet contract. The improved helmet features an ultra-lightweight hybrid composite structure, the result of more than three years of materials research and development, and achieves outstanding ballistic performance at an extraordinarily low weight. Morgan has supplied over one million combat helmets as part of the company’s LASA (Lightweight Armored Soldier Architecture) line of products.

The helmet also features Morgan’s latest ballistic and fragment composite technology, which helps to avoid severe injury from back face deformation and dynamic impact to the user’s head when the shell is hit by fragments.

Morgan’s new CM735 Canadian shell provides very high levels of ballistic performance with weight savings of approximately 23 percent over the existing CG634 shell with a weight of less than 920 grams (32 ounces).

The Canadian CM735 combat helmet contract has been awarded to the Composites and Defence Systems business of Morgan Advanced Materials. 

The Canadian CM735 combat helmet contract has been awarded to the Composites and Defence Systems business of Morgan Advanced Materials. 

Morgan is honoured to be providing the Canadian Forces with their next generation lightweight ballistic helmet,” Composites and Defence Systems North America Business Manager James Kempston said in a statement. “Morgan’s CM735 solution uses the latest composite technology, providing increased protection for substantially less weight. With nearly 25 per cent weight reduction, it is truly a game-changing helmet in an environment where reduced burden is directly related to increased user performance and decreased fatigue.”

QRA Corp has welcomed David Lizius to its board of directors as an independent member. Lizius is a high-tech industry veteran with experience leading both business and technical design teams across the space, defence, and biotechnology sectors. His career began at Marconi Space Systems (now part of Airbus) and later AEA Technology plc, leading design teams to develop complex space systems including electric propulsion, electromagnetic design software, and the first lithium ion battery to power an orbiting spacecraft. Lizius recently led COM DEV Canada as president and delivered headline programs, including an instrument for the James Webb Space Telescope and the optical payload for the Sapphire Space Situational Awareness Mission.

“David has demonstrated the rare ability to combine technological engineering skills with strategic business sense throughout his career,” said Jordan Kyriakidis, QRA co-founder and CEO. “QRA has committed itself to build solutions to the design efficiency problem as a result of the increasing system complexity demands since day 1, and David’s first-hand experience with the problem and the high-tech industry itself is a valuable addition to our team at QRA.”

The last C-17 Globemaster III built at Boeing’s Long Beach plant recently received a send-off from more than 1,000 spectators. The aircraft will be housed in San Antonio, Texas, until it is delivered to the Qatar Emiri Air Force early in 2016.

“This is truly the end of an era. It’s a sad day, but one that all of the Boeing employees and suppliers who have worked over the years building this great aircraft can be proud of,” Nan Bouchard, vice president and C-17 program manager, said in a statement.

The Long Beach facility built more than 250 C-17s over 20 years.

L-3 WESCAM has announced that it signed an agreement with Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments Company (ADASI), a subsidiary of Emirates Defence Industries Company (EDIC), to open an L-3 WESCAM Authorized Service Center (WASC) in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The new service center will offer maintenance and repair solutions to regional customers who operate L-3 MX-10 or MX-15 electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) imaging and targeting systems.

The Dubai Airshow marks the beginning of operations in Abu Dhabi for this latest WASC. Rod Till, vice president of customer service at L-3 WESCAM, and Ali Al Yafei, chief executive officer of ADASI, were part of a signing ceremony that took place at the show’s EDIC pavilion November 10.

“We are very proud to welcome ADASI as a partner in expanding our growing worldwide network of service centers,” Till said in a statement. “Our customer base within the Middle East has grown significantly over the past few years, and offering the convenience of a local support center further underscores the commitment we’ve made to servicing the mission systems of our regional customers.”

The German Aerospace Center (DLR) has awarded Airbus Defence and Space with two research projects to enhance emergency preparedness and safety of operations in collaboration with Canadian partners. Airbus Defence and Space will monitor man-made changes on land and support tactical ship route planning in Arctic waters.

Based on their collaboration in space, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) have announced the funding of six major research projects in the domain of emergency response and safety of operations. DLR has awarded Airbus Defence and Space with two of them.

In collaboration with MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates, Ltd. (MDA), the first project will examine man-made changes on land using multi-frequency SAR satellite data. The methods developed throughout this project will monitor the changes’ impact on the environment, including new buildings, roads, forests, and surface movements due to industrial activities such as mining. For the second project, Airbus Defence and Space will work with C-CORE to investigate the synergistic use of X- and C-band SAR-data for tactical ship route planning in Arctic waters, its objective being to monitor the sea ice situation along shipping routes in the north. Both Canadian partners receive funds from CSA.

Enfotec Technical Services Inc., one of the end users, believes that satellite imagery plays a vital role in ensuring the safety and efficiency of navigation in ice-covered waters. The project addresses how to best use different satellites concurrently in order to increase the overall quality of the ice information provided to ships, the news release from Airbus Defence and Space Canada noted.

“With our experience in natural disasters and maritime monitoring, we are confident to support Canada in improving its emergency capacity readiness in the High North,” said Simon Jacques, president of Airbus Defence and Space Canada Inc.

Seaspan ULC hosted a groundbreaking ceremony November 27 to announce it has officially started construction on a new head office in North Vancouver. The 7,800 square metre (84,000 square foot) corporate headquarters is scheduled for completion in late 2017. Once complete, the building will house 350 Seaspan staff (up from the current 130) from across its various companies.

 Seaspan’s groundbreaking event follows on the heels of the start of construction on the first National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS) ship — the Canadian Coast Guard’s Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel (OFSV). Construction of the OFSV started this June after the on-time and under-budget completion of Vancouver Shipyards’ two-year, $170 million shipyard modernization project.

Seaspan expects to hire another 1,300 trade workers and office staff over the next five years.

Bombardier announced that it has delivered the first of two specialized Challenger 605 aircraft ordered by the Hong Kong Government Flying Service.

This multi-role aircraft can be used for search and rescue, VIP transportation, medical evacuation, as well as other special missions. The Challenger multi-role aircraft will replace the existing SAR aircraft currently operated by the Hong Kong Government Flying Service for long-range search and rescue operations, Bombardier said. 

By David Pugliese

From the December 2015 (Volume 22 Issue 11)

The Asterix, a commercial ship will become the new interim supply ship for the Royal Canadian Navy after conversions are made by Chantier Davie shipyards of Levis, Quebec. This ship will help fill the gap until the Joint Support Ships are ready in 2020-2021. (Project Resolve)

The Asterix, a commercial ship will become the new interim supply ship for the Royal Canadian Navy after conversions are made by Chantier Davie shipyards of Levis, Quebec. This ship will help fill the gap until the Joint Support Ships are ready in 2020-2021. (Project Resolve)

Honeywell International of the U.S. will buy COM DEV, Canada’s second largest space firm, and a space equipment provider for the Department of National Defence.

The purchase price is $455 million.

Components manufactured by COM DEV, based in Cambridge, Ontario, are on a large number of commercial geostationary-orbit telecommunications satellites.

COM DEV is also a key player on military space programs. It worked on the Canadian Forces Sapphire satellite project. COM DEV is also involved in the Canada’s Medium Earth Orbit Search and Rescue (MEOSAR) satellite project. That project will provide search and rescue repeaters to be installed on the USAF’s GPS 3 satellites.

COM DEV attempted to enter the U.S. defence and government market with the establishment of a California facility. But in January, the firm acknowledged it was closing that installation.

What is not clear is whether the Canadian government will prevent the sale. In 2008, the government blocked the sale of MDA Corp., of Richmond, BC to ATK of the U.S.

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson along with leaders from Thales in Canada and members of the Ottawa academic and business communities, officially opened Thales’ new Experience Centre on Oct. 15.

 “As a leader in R&D investment in Canada, Thales has designed this innovative new space to support the development of new technologies and help build the next generation of solutions, with our partners in key areas such as urban security, smart mobility and urban computing,” said Siegfried Usal, Vice President, Strategy and Communications.

Military-grade technology is coming to the consumer market.

Pelican Products Inc. has announced that its elite roster of Pelican ProGear Voyager and Protector cases will provide military-grade protection for the newly-revealed Apple iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus in addition to its predecessors, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

“Because people make sizeable investments in the latest iPhone, we’re here to make sure they protect that investment,” said David Becker, Vice President of Sales – Consumer Electronics.

The Asterix has arrived in Canada and is at Davie shipyards in Quebec, ready to undergo conversion into an interim supply ship for the Royal Canadian Navy.

The ship will help fill the supply ship gap (Canada no longer has any) until the Joint Support Ships arrive in 2020-2021.

A deal still has to be reached between the federal government and Davie/Project Resolve (the firm providing such services to the RCN).

But that is expected to be in place and ready to go by 2017.

Canada is also leasing at-sea-replenishment services from the Chilean and, starting next year, the Spanish navy. Those ships will be available for the training of RCN crews.

In addition, Davie and Project Resolve had a proposal to offer Canada two such interim supply ships (Asterix has a sister ship which could also be converted).

But the DND tells Industry Watch that the RCN isn’t interested.

“A contract for the services of a second converted vessel is not being considered by the Royal Canadian Navy,” DND spokeswoman Ashley Lemire said.

Meanwhile, Davie announced that it has formalized a partnership with ALMACO Group, a marine accommodation specialist.

ALMACO will open a site-office and setup assembly facilities at Davie as well as enter into a technology- and knowledge-transfer with the firm.

Cavalry troopers from the 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team prepare to fire the mounted M2 .50-calibre machine gun via the Remote Weapon System. General Dynamics Land Systems won a contract to mount a 30mm gun and new turret on U.S. Army Strykers in Europe. (U.S. Army)

Cavalry troopers from the 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team prepare to fire the mounted M2 .50-calibre machine gun via the Remote Weapon System. General Dynamics Land Systems won a contract to mount a 30mm gun and new turret on U.S. Army Strykers in Europe. (U.S. Army)

As part of Davie's Project Resolve program, ALMACO and Davie have worked with OMX, a Canadian supply chain technology platform focused on optimizing Canadian content in defence procurements, to engage both domestic equipment suppliers as well as serving and retired Royal Canadian Navy staff.

An ongoing survey allowed industry and RCN staff to make their suggestions as to how Davie and ALMACO can optimize the accommodation on board and improve the quality-of-life for all personnel onboard.

Nicole Verkindt, President of OMX noted in a statement: "This level of engagement with the people who will actually sail onboard federal ships is innovative and unprecedented. By using the suggestions from the OMX survey, it has allowed Davie to work with ALMACO and Canadian suppliers to provide a safe, efficient and comfortable living environment for our sailors"

General Dynamics Land Systems will mount a 30mm gun and new turret on U.S. Army Stryker vehicles in Europe.

But it is unclear whether General Dynamics Land Systems – Canada (GDLS-C) in London, Ont. will receive the work.

The upgrade will involve 81 vehicles and is to deal with concerns the vehicles are lacking weaponry in the face of a potential Russian threat in the region. The work is expected to be finished by 2018.

It is expected that up to eventually 1,000 Stryker vehicles will be upgraded.

In an interview with the London Free Press, a spokesman for GDLS-C played down the news. 

This is early in the process and we cannot speculate on any impacts this may have to GDLS or London jobs," said Dough Wilson-Hodge, manager of corporate affairs for GDLS-C. 

Lockheed Martin Canada has announced that the ANZAC frigate systems upgrade project successfully completed the combat system critical design review on schedule and to New Zealand's satisfaction.

The government-mandated review proves a contractor's progress and planning for all elements of a program. It covered in detail all of Lockheed Martin Canada's plans for shipboard systems and designs, the firm noted. With the successful review, Lockheed Martin Canada can now begin implementing detailed designs and plans for the system's key components, which will in turn lead to ship installation. The milestone is the latest achievement for Lockheed Martin Canada's ANZAC team in the 16 months since contract award, according to the firm.

In April 2014, following an extensive worldwide competitive tender, Lockheed Martin Canada was selected as the prime systems Integrator by the New Zealand Ministry of Defence to upgrade the combat systems on their ANZAC class ships. Lockheed Martin Canada's Combat Management System 330 is the backbone of the technical solution for the project and many of the sub-systems to be supplied by Lockheed Martin Canada are common to the Royal Canadian Navy's Halifax Class Modernization Project.

Kraken Sonar Inc. Inc., based in Newfoundland, has received a $1.5 million contract from a major international defence contractor for a KATFISH sonar system. Along with spare parts and support, the initial order could exceed $2 million. Due to the sensitivity of its business, the client's name cannot be disclosed.

BMT Group, an international design, engineering and risk management consultancy, has announced the launch of a new Canadian-based subsidiary, BMT Clarity.  A management consultancy that provides high value advice and insight to complex Canadian public sector programs, BMT Clarity brings together the deep, specialist and local knowledge of experts from sister companies BMT Hi-Q Sigma and BMT Fleet Technology, the company noted.

Based in Ottawa, BMT Clarity brings together BMT Hi-Q Sigma’s experience of delivering management consultancy services in other markets and BMT Fleet Technology’s deep understanding of the challenges facing procurement and reform programs that comes from over 30 years of working with the Canadian Federal Government, the firm added.

 

 

 

By David Pugliese 

From the November 2015 (Volume 22 Issue 10)

 

Chantier Davie Canada Inc. and Project Resolve Inc. announced Oct. 8 that the MV Astérix had been delivered in Lévis, Quebec, and that the vessel’s acquisition from its former owners is now complete. Federal election candidates visited the ship on Oct. 13 to get briefed on what is being called Project Resolve.

The arrival of the containership marks another step in Project Resolve’s program to convert the vessel in order to provide interim at-sea support services to meet the Royal Canadian Navy’s operational requirement for at-sea replenishment, the companies noted.

Design of Project Resolve's MV Astérix. (projectresolve.ca)

Design of Project Resolve's MV Astérix. (projectresolve.ca)

The vessel conversion will take place at Davie Shipbuilding in Lévis and features a Canadian team of suppliers. Pending a signed agreement with the Canadian government, the converted vessel will be delivered for service in the summer of 2017, the companies say.

There have also been more contracts awarded by Chantier Davie Canada Inc. for Project Resolve, the provision of leased refuelling/supply ship services to the RCN.

RaceRocks of Victoria, B.C., signed an agreement with Chantier Davie Canada Inc. and Project Resolve Inc. to deliver a full complement of modern technology-enabled learning systems for the Resolve-class auxiliary oiler replenishment (AOR) ship.

This training will fully integrate with the Royal Canadian Navy’s newly announced Naval Training System (NTS) and will be inherently compatible with the Defence Learning Network (DLN) and Canadian Virtual Naval Fleet (CVNF), according to RaceRocks. “RaceRocks has extensive experience integrating its world-class training tools into the NTS,” Spencer Fraser, CEO of Project Resolve said in a statement.

In addition, OSI Maritime Systems of Burnaby, B.C., announced that Chantier Davie/Project Resolve Inc. have selected its Integrated Navigation and Tactical System (INTS) for the interim AOR, the Astérix. “OSI is known globally for its expertise in providing military integrated bridge systems for new build and retrofit projects,” Ken Kirkpatrick, OSI president and CEO, said in a statement.  “We are proud to be working with Davie and Project Resolve and to be part of this truly Canadian experience from East to West. This event marks another major RCN project in which we are involved, and with OSI comes 100 per cent Canadian content and expertise.”

OSI’s Integrated Navigation and Tactical System (INTS) is a fully scalable, IMO and NATO STANAG 4564 WECDIS compliant integrated bridge system that offers a flexible design able to meet the requirements of demanding military environments, the firm noted.

Kirkpatrick said this is the same technology that is being used on the AOPS program.

Heroux-Devtek Inc. of Longueuil, Que., was awarded a long-term contract by Finmeccanica-AgustaWestland to supply the landing gear for the AW609 TiltRotor aircraft.

Under the terms of the agreement, Heroux-Devtek will design, develop, fabricate, assemble, test and deliver complete landing gear systems for the AW609 aircraft. This life cycle mandate also includes the provision of spare parts, according to Heroux-Devtek.

Design work is expected to begin very shortly and will be mainly carried out at the St-Hubert, Que., and Runcorn (United Kingdom) facilities, marking the first partnership between Heroux-Devtek’s North American operations and AgustaWestland, the firm added.

Heroux-Devtek’s European operations had previously developed the landing gear for AgustaWestland’s AW101 aircraft.

As of April 2015, almost 60 AW609 aircraft have been ordered by international customers for a variety of roles and missions, including offshore transportation, emergency medical services and patient transfer, search and rescue, as well as government duties.

Thales has recently been contracted by Lockheed Martin Canada to supplying IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) interrogators and transponders for the Royal Canadian Navy’s Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS).

The Long Range IFF interrogator will enable AOPS to identify friendly aircraft and to ensure 360-degree cooperative civilian and military aircraft surveillance, Thales noted.

The contract won by Thales is based on the latest version of the BlueGate Long Range IFF interrogator products and new miniaturized transponder. It is fully compliant with the latest version of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) civilian standards and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) / U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) military standards. By fulfilling the latest standards, the AOPS will be able to make surveillance without any restriction, in particular to on shore Civilian Secondary Surveillance Radars.

Thales says it has supplied over 19,000 IFF units for more than 100 types of aircraft, vehicles and naval vessels worldwide.

CAE won defence contracts valued at more than $100 million.

Some of the key contracts include: the United States Air Force exercising another option year for CAE USA to continue providing comprehensive training services as part of the KC-135 Aircrew Training System (ATS) program; the United States Navy exercising another option year for CAE USA to continue providing T-44C aircrew training services; and a five-year contract to provide a range of maintenance and in-service support on the German air force’s Eurofighter training devices as part of an industry team in Germany.

CAE will also have specific responsibility for maintaining the Eurofighter visual systems, including CAE Medallion-6000 image generators as well as projector and display systems, according to the company. The maintenance and in-service support services will be performed on-site at Laage, Neuburg, Noervenich and Wittmund, which are the four Eurofighter main operating bases in Germany.

Textron Systems, which is providing the Canadian Armed Forces with the Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle (TAPV), received an award to provide another 55 Commando Select vehicles to the Afghan military. The deal is for a $56.2 million firm-fixed-price contract from the U.S. Army Contracting Command.

The four-wheeled Commando Select vehicles are being delivered to the Afghan National Army. Deliveries will be completed by February 2016.

Called Mobile Strike Force Vehicles by the Afghan National Army (ANA), these vehicles will be deployed in support of security operations throughout the country. More than 630 of these vehicles have been delivered to the ANA since 2012.

On the Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue (FWSAR) project front, the deadline for bids has been moved. Proposals were supposed to be in Sept. 28 for FWSAR, but the process has now been extended and bids for the new aircraft for the RCAF will now be required by Jan. 11, 2016.

Public Works official Pierre-Alain Bujold tells Industry Watch that the extension was requested by companies.

Public Works did not provide any further details such as which companies asked for the extension in bidding or why.

Public Works estimates that once bids are in, it may take another six months to evaluate the proposals. It has no idea when the winning bidder would be announced or when aircraft might arrive.

“It is only once this evaluation has been duly completed and the selection of the successful bidder has been approved that further information will be released,” Public Works noted in a statement. “A delivery schedule of the new fleet will only be finalized once proposals have been received and the successful bid presented to government.”

The Department of National Defence says it expects a contract award in 2016 and final delivery of the planes in 2023. No details have been provided on when the first deliveries of planes would take place.

It’s unclear what impact the latest delay would have on the 2016 award date. 

 

By Dave Pugliese 

From the October 2015 (Volume 22 Issue 9)

 

The Department of National Defence tells Industry Watch that testing has already begun on Rheinmetall’s future soldier system.

“The system qualification phase of the acquisition contract, which includes testing of the systems, has started,” noted DND spokeswoman Ashley Lemire.

The military hopes to finish that testing next year and a full contract will be awarded to the firm after that.

In July Rheinmetall was awarded the contract for the first phase of the Canadian Forces’ Integrated Soldier System Project (ISSP). The company’s modular integrated system includes communications and navigation technology and will improve the situational awareness of the individual soldier.

“So the basic elements of the system: a radio, you have a technical interface,” Stephane Oehrli, a vice-president at Rheinmetall Canada, explained to journalists at the news conference at the firm’s facilities at Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. “It kind of looks like your Smartphone at home.”

The system also includes mapping, tracking and GPS capabilities. “The actual goal is to increase the situational awareness of the soldier on the battlefield — that he knows where he is, that he knows where his buddies are,” said Oehrli.

The equipment can also be integrated into the Canadian military’s Land Command Support System, according to Rheinmetall.

The initial contract is worth $7 million, according to the company. But Rheinmetall is counting that once the Canadian government declares the system fully acceptable in 2016, it will exercise options under the contract to buy up to 4,144 of the systems, and award a second contract for related support. The total value of both contracts could reach $250 million, according to Rheinmetall.

Rheinmetall Canada is supplying the system in cooperation with Saab AB. As prime contractor, Rheinmetall’s Canadian subsidiary is responsible for system development and integration, program management, and integrated logistics.

L-3
MAPPS
has announced it has been awarded the implementation subcontract by Irving Shipbuilding Inc. for the supply of the Integrated Platform Management System for the Royal Canadian Navy’s Arctic/Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS).

Under this contract, L-3 MAPPS will complete the design work undertaken during the earlier project definition phase to build, integrate, test and deliver a modern IPMS for the new vessels, the firm announced in a news release.

“Further to our ongoing successful implementation of the Halifax-class frigates’ IPMS upgrade, we are very pleased to be working with Irving Shipbuilding on this new and very important Royal Canadian Navy project,” Ranges Kasturi, president of L-3 MAPPS said in a statement.

In addition, Sagem (Safran) announced it had won the contract from OSI Maritime Systems Ltd to provide the inertial navigation systems for the AOPS.

Each AOPS will be outfitted with two BlueNaute attitude and heading systems from Sagem.

The new-generation BlueNaute system is based on a proprietary Sagem technology, the hemispherical resonator gyro (HRG), the firm noted.

The U.S. Coast Guard had already selected the BlueNaute system in 2015 to modernize its Reliance-class medium-endurance cutters and the Juniper-class seagoing buoy tenders.

In other news, the RCAF is still trying to figure out the next step on its Tactical Control Radar modernization project.

The contract with Thales Canada Ltd. to procure two radar units to supportCF-18 fighter operations in Cold Lake, Alta., and Bagotville, Que., is in the process of being cancelled.

The systems were to replace the RCAF’s TPS-70 tactical radars, which were bought in 1990.

Neither Public Works, the Department of National Defence nor Thales Canada are saying what went wrong with the project that was originally to cost $55 million. The 2011 deal called for the first of two Ground Master 400 radars to be delivered in February 2013.

But DND documents obtained by the CBC show that costs had risen to more than $78 million by 2013. By November 2014, Public Works was deep in negotiations with Thales to resolve the problems, CBC reported.

Public Works now acknowledges to Industry Watch that “in February 2015, Canada and Thales reached an agreement in principle to terminate this contract by mutual consent.”

Thales Canada has declined comment.

At the time of the original contract announcement, Thales noted that its award was building on its “40-years track record of providing world-class sensor systems to the Canadian Forces.”

So how will the federal government proceed with replacing the aging RCAF radars? Will there be a new competition?

“Public Works is working with DND to identify an appropriate path forward to meet their long-term capability needs on this project,” stated Public Works spokeswoman Jessica Kingsbury.

So what about the existing radars? How long can they keep operating? Will the cancellation of the contract have an impact on RCAF operations since replacement radars don’t appear to be coming anytime soon?

DND replied with an emailed statement that did not answer those questions. Instead the DND email noted the following: “With regards to the AN/TPS-70 systems employed by the Tactical Control Radar (TCR) Squadrons at 3 Wing/CFB Bagotville and 4 Wing/CFB Cold Lake, they have been at the forefront of our national and international Fighter Force’s training for over two decades.”

Meanwhile, BAE Systems is highlighting that a Canadian firm is already contributing to the Type 26 project. BAE recently awarded the first equipment manufacturing contracts for the ships, including the Canadian firm WR Davis Engineering Ltd for the uptakes and downtakes on the vessels.

Tom Davis, Vice President of WR Davis, said: “We are delighted to participate in the prestigious Royal Navy Type 26 Global Combat Ship program for the supply of the complete downtake, uptake, and IRS systems for the propulsion and ship service engines. This builds on our previous success of supplying similar systems for the Royal Navy’s Type 45 destroyers and reinforces our position as a world leader in the design supply of engine exhaust IR suppression systems, and engine downtakes and uptakes, for naval warships.”

WR Davis entered into a contract with BAE Systems for design, manufacture, and supply in May 2015 and is currently performing the system integration and detailed design; the firm is on track to deliver the first ship set of equipment in the summer of 2017.