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Who's who and what's what in the defence sector.

FIRST C295 FOR the RCAF makes maiden flight, new Coast Guard vessel delivered.

Two significant milestones for Canadian defence and security took place in the summer.

The first Airbus C295, purchased for the Royal Canadian Air Force's search and rescue fleet, completed its maiden flight.

And the first new large vessel built for the Coast Guard under the National Shipbuilding Strategy was accepted by the federal government.

The C295 aircraft took off from Seville, Spain, on July 4 and landed after a flight of one hour and 27 minutes, according to its manufacturer Airbus. Delivery of the aircraft is expected by the end of 2019.

The contract, awarded in December 2016, includes 16 C295 aircraft, in-service support elements including, training and engineering services, the construction of a new training centre in Comox, British Columbia, and maintenance and support services, the firm noted.

The aircraft will be based where search and rescue squadrons are currently located: Comox, British Columbia; Winnipeg, Manitoba; Trenton, Ontario; and Greenwood, Nova Scotia.

Airbus officials noted that considerable progress has been made since the FWSAR program was announced two and a half years ago: the first aircraft will now begin flight testing; another five aircraft are in various stages of assembly; and seven simulator and training devices are in various testing stages.

In addition, the first RCAF crews will begin training in late summer 2019 at Airbus' International Training Centre in Seville, Spain.

On June 27 the federal government accepted and took delivery of the first new large vessel built for the Coast Guard under the National Shipbuilding Strategy.

Built by Seaspan in Vancouver, the first Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel, CCGS Sir John Franklin, has now joined the Canadian Coast Guard fleet.

The CCGS Sir John Franklin, was launched in December 2017. Its home port will be at the Institute of Ocean Sciences on Patricia Bay, British Columbia. It includes four science labs: a wet lab, a dry lab, an ocean lab and a control lab, to support scientific research. The Offshore Fisheries Science Vessels (OFSV) are the first class of ships to be built by Seaspan's Vancouver Shipyards, as part of the non-combat package under the National Shipbuilding Strategy.

Seaspan noted that it successfully launched OFSV 2, the future CCGS Capt. Jacques Cartier on June 5. OFSV 2 is currently undergoing systems commissioning in advance of the commencement of sea trials this fall. OFSV 3, the future CCGS John Cabot, will be structurally complete by the end of summer 2019, according to the firm.

Seaspan Shipyards also announced that Algoma Steel Inc. has won the contract to provide steel plates for the Royal Canadian Navy's new Joint Support Ships.

Seaspan's supply partner, Samuel Custom Plate of British Columbia, conducted the competition that selected Algoma. Under the contract, Samuel Custom Plate will subcontract Algoma to provide steel plates which will be used to construct part of the hull of the JSS.

The MQ-9B SkyGuardian Remotely Piloted Aircraft--designed and developed by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.--has now flown more than 100 test flights as development continues towards its first delivery to the Royal Air Force as part of the Protector RG Mk1 program. Since making its first flight in November 2016, General Atomics says it has kept the new aircraft busy performing a variety of flights, from long endurance testing (logging 48.2 consecutive hours in flight in May 2017) to becoming the first Medium-altitude, Long-range RPA to perform a trans-Atlantic flight in July 2018. A second company-owned SkyGuardian was completed in September 2018 to support the development workload. SkyGuardian is customizable with nine hardpoints and payloads to meet customer requirements.

The Royal Air Force is acquiring SkyGuardian as part of its Protector RG Mk1 program and is scheduled for first delivery in the early 2020s. Belgium's government has approved the Belgian Defence Ministry to negotiate for the acquisition of SkyGuardian to meet that nation's remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) requirements. The aircraft is also being considered by the Australian Defence Force, who chose GA-ASI to supply an RPA system for Project Air 7003.

General Atomics designed the new RPA as the next generation of multi-mission Predator B fleet. GA-ASI named its baseline MQ-9B aircraft SkyGuardian, and the maritime surveillance variant SeaGuardian. As part of the certification effort, MQ-9B is being outfitted with a GA-ASI-developed Detect and Avoid or DAA system. The DAA system consists of a Due Regard Radar and processor, coupled with an advanced Traffic alert and Collision Avoidance System, and Automatic Dependent SurveillanceBroadcast. The new RPA is also built for all-weather performance with lightning protection, damage tolerance, and a de-icing system.

Leonardo DRS announced that its Canadian subsidiary, DRS Technologies Canada Ltd will be providing tactical integrated communications systems to Seaspan's Vancouver Shipyards for the Royal Canadian Navy's Joint Support Ship program.

This includes the provision of the Secure Voice and Tactical Intercommunication System, the ship's telephone system and the main broadcast and alarm system. In addition, DRS's scope includes the flight deck communications system, the sound and self-powered systems and the medical communications system. To satisfy the Canadian Navy's Tactical and Secure Voice requirements, DRS TCL will provide its Shipboard Integrated Communications System (SHINCOM 3100) including the helicopter audio distribution system, recorder storage units, and a selection of DRS TCL's 3D spatial audio tactical terminals and ancillaries. For external communications, the company will provide the wideband audio network data switching system for automated switching of any source to any radio. SHINCOM 3100 is the latest generation in shipboard communications technology, which provides reliable, red/ black security-certified tactical communications for naval operators. SHINCOM was originally developed for the Canadian Patrol Frigate program, and later installed on board the Iroquois-class destroyers and Protecteur-class auxiliary oiler ships of the Royal Canadian Navy.

The system is already installed on board the Royal Canadian Navy's Halifax-class frigates, and with the United States Navy, the Royal Australian Navy, the Royal New Zealand Navy, the Japanese Maritime Self-Defence Force, and the Republic of Korea Navy. For JSS, DRS TCL will produce two shipsets, the first of which will be delivered in early 2020.

Caption: The first of 16 C295s that Airbus is building for the Royal Canadian Air Force took to the skies July 4 on its maiden flight (PHOTO COURTESY AIRBUS)

Caption: On June 27 the federal government accepted and took delivery of the first new large vessel built for the Coast Guard under the National Shipbuilding Strategy. Built by Seaspan. the first Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel, CCGS Sir John Franklin, has now joined the Canadian Coast Guard fleet. (PHOTO COURTESY SEASPAN)

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Title Annotation:INDUSTRY WATCH
Author:Pugliese, David
Publication:Esprit de Corps
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Aug 1, 2019
Words:1103
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