Monday, October 18, 2010

DTN News: Canada Awards Harris C$273 Million CF-18 Contract

Defense News: DTN News: Canada Awards Harris C$273 Million CF-18 Contract
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - October 18, 2010: Canada has awarded Harris Corp a nine-year C$273 million ($270.3 million) contract to help service its fleet of CF-18 fighter jets, the communications and information technology company said on Sunday.

The Florida-based company said the contract is for a six-year period plus three additional option years.

Harris said its Canadian unit will provide repair and overhaul, engineering support, program management, life cycle support and obsolescence and material management services to support the avionics systems on the jets.

Separately, the Canadian government said over 40 full-time positions will be maintained in Calgary, Alberta on an annual basis for the length of the contract.

Canada last month extended a C$467 million maintenance contract for its CF-18 fleet with a division of L-3 Communications Holdings Inc.

The CF-18s are due to reach the end of their working lives in about 2020.

Ottawa earlier this year said it would replace them with 65 new F-35 jets from Lockheed Martin Corp for C$9 billion, a deal that has been criticized by opposition politicians.

CF-18 Fighter Jets: A versatile, world-class fighter aircraft, the supersonic CF-188 Hornet (or CF-18 as it is popularly known) can engage both ground and aerial targets. Its twin engines generate enough thrust to lift 24 full-size pick-up trucks off the ground.

As the Canadian Air Force’s frontline multi-role fighter, the CF-188 is used for air defence, air superiority, tactical support, training, aerobatic demonstration, and aerospace testing and evaluation.

The aircraft is equipped with a sophisticated radar system that can track targets in all weather and from great distances. A Sniper Advanced Targeting pod, which contains an infra-red (heat-sensitive) camera and TV camera, allows pilots to see targets at night and in low visibility conditions. The pod also has a laser designator to guide precision bombing, and a laser spot tracker. The newly acquired Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS) allows the pilot to effectively designate targets anywhere around the aircraft.

Because of its superior power and speed, and its exceptional tracking capabilities, the CF-188 has had great success in hundreds of military operations in Canada and around the world.

During the Gulf War, Canada sent 24 CF-188s to Qatar to participate in the American-led Desert Shield and Desert Storm campaigns. Canadian Air Force pilots flew more than 5700 hours and 2700 sorties.

Since the September 11 terrorist attacks, Canada’s fighter force is committed to protecting North America from future threats. As part of Operation Noble Eagle, NORAD’s mission to safeguard North American skies, CF-188s maintain a constant state of alert, ready to respond immediately to potential threats to continental security. Most recently, CF-188s were heard over the skies of British Columbia, where they provided around the clock support to the 2010 Olympic Games, helping to ensure that this special sporting event did not become a security event.


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