September 5, 2012. David Pugliese Defence Watch
This press release is from Alenia:
Halifax, Nova Scotia, September 5, 2012 – Alenia Aermacchi, Alenia Aermacchi North America and its Canadian partners, General Dynamics Canada, Provincial Aerospace and DRS Canada are pleased to announce that their C-27J Fixed Wing Search and Rescue (FWSAR) configuration will include a Canadian mission system. By partnering with well-established Canadian companies and committing to a Canadian mission system, Alenia Aermacchi resolves to make the C-27J Spartan the most suitable search and rescue platform available for Canada’s FWSAR mission. The C-27J team will develop a SAR platform focused on Canada’s requirements, including the mission system, which will be designed and integrated in Canada, delivering economic impact and efficiency. Furthermore, Alenia will work closely with the Canadian government, Canadian partners and vendors to assure the necessary technology transfer so Canadian firms have the technological capability to support the C-27J FWSAR solution in Canada, for the life of the program. Completing this work in Canada maximizes Canadian participation in the program and creates opportunities for Canadian industry to market similar solutions around the world.
The mission system, which includes high tech sensors and the computers that manage them, will greatly increase search and rescue crews’ ability to detect Canadians in need, such as mariners in life rafts or lost hikers in the mountains.
“The mission system will add significant search capability to the C-27J. Five years from now, we’ll wonder how we ever managed search and rescue missions without it,” said David Ibbetson, General Manager of General Dynamics Canada. “Eastern Canadian companies are a strong part of the C-27J team. The program represents a great opportunity for Eastern Canada and our country as a whole; announcing our plans to missionize the aircraft in Canada, while here at DEFSEC, seems appropriate.”
In May, Alenia Aermacchi, Alenia Aermacchi North America, General Dynamics Canada, Provincial Aerospace and DRS Canada signed a Letter of Intent to partner on a proposal for a Canadian FWSAR solution. Since that time the team has been working to develop the best path forward. In addition to its decision to missionize the C-27J in Canada, the team looks forward to the time when it can announce new teaming decisions and its plans to drive superior economic benefits to all parts of Canada, coast-to-coast- to-coast.
“After visiting our partners’ facilities in Ottawa, ON, Halifax, NS and St. John’s, NL, I am more confident than ever that the C-27J team is capable of producing a search and rescue platform that Canadians can be proud of – a platform that is not only tailored for Canada, leveraging world class Canadian technology, but one that helps build the Canadian economy through continued investment in technology, infrastructure and workforce,” said Alan Calegari, President and Chief Executive Officer of Alenia Aermacchi North America.
The C-27J Spartan is the most capable, cost effective, and uncompromising search and rescue aircraft available today. The C-27J is a twin-engine turboprop tactical transport aircraft with state-of-the-art technology in avionics, propulsion and systems, resulting in a high performance, cost effective and extremely flexible aircraft. The aircraft can operate in the harshest environments and over vast terrain and can provide the speed necessary to reach those in need, when time is short. The C-27J is a perfect fit for Canada’s FWSAR needs.
“Provincial Aerospace has been performing airborne surveillance missions in Canada for more than 30 years, flying over 150,000 hours and completing 25,000 incident-free missions,” said Mr. Keith Stoodley, Senior Vice President of Business Development at Provincial Aerospace. “We are intimately familiar with the demands of Canada’s oceans, arctic areas, and rugged terrain and we are confident that the C-27J Spartan is the best suited aircraft for Canada’s SAR needs. No other company in the world has the operational experience that we bring to the table and when combined with the team’s missionization experience, the FWSAR procurement process presents exceptional domestic and international opportunities for Canadian industry.”
As the program evolves, the C-27J team believes Canada’s approach to FWSAR is appropriate and practical. For example, when it comes to having a single point of accountability, the C-27J team is committed to having one entity responsible for all program performance, with others, including Canadian defence and aerospace companies responsible for fully supporting the aircraft for the life of the program. The C-27J team looks forward to the release of the draft Request for Proposal and the continued advancement of the project.