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CASR — Canadian American Strategic Review — BG Airlift
CASR Background pages are listed in reverse chronological order on the index page. This Airlift Index covers Canadian Forces airlifters – transport aircraft flying in both the tactical and strategic roles. Here, pages are
arranged by subject area: strategic, tactical and FWSAR.
Earlier CASR pages covering candidates for the Airlift Capability Project contests ( Strategic and
Tactical ) have long since been deleted. Many such pages are still available through the Internet Archive (eg: see 2005's Strategic Airlifters index or 2006's Tactical Airlifters index ).
For other listings of Background articles, see BG Archives (for earlier listings) or
browse by the relevant subject area in the listing of the other Background sub-indices. These include:
Aerospace, Air Force, Artillery, Comparisons, Helicopters, Navy, Projects
(for general listings), Sealifters, UAVs (being revised), Vehicles (incl. armoured vehicles) and Weapons.
Strategic Airlift – Liberal FTA becomes the Tory's Airlift Capability Project - Strategic
CF strategic airlift was covered by the aborted 'Future Strategic Aircraft ' project which was later revived by the Harper Conservatives as their Airlift Capability Project - Strategic. FTA
had danced around alternatives to the Air Forces' desired Boeing C-17 aircraft. The ACP-S went directly to an Advance Contract Award Notice for Boeing resulting in RCAF CC-177s.
Strategic Airlifter (Procurement Documents)
Advance Contract Award Notice for the Airlift Capability Project – Strategic
ACP-S ACAN resulting in the
order for four Boeing CC-177 Globemaster IIIs
Contract Award Notice for ACP-Strategic – Boeing C-17 Gov't news release
C-17 Globemaster III Support US Foreign Military Sales contract for ACP-S
CC-177 Support Equipment ACAN Recovery equipment for crashed airlifters
CC-177 Cargo Loading System 44K 'Truck Aircraft Side Load/Unload Loader'
CC-177 Industrial Regional Benefits Funding for SFU/UBC visual analytics
Backing up the RCAF's four CC-177s is the Strategic Airlift Interim Solution. SALIS is a European-based NATO organization which Canada joined, giving access to 125 strategic airlift
flying hours per annum on 6 leased Antonov An-124-100 aircraft.
SALIS: NATO's Strategic Airlift Interim Solution Leased Antonov An-124s
Tactical Airlift – Hercules Replacement and Airlift Capability Project-Tactical
Canadian tactical airlifter procurement followed a similar arch to that of CF strategic airlifters. Successive Liberal governments tried to dodge the Hercules replacement hot potato
despite regular public relations embarassments. It was a 2005 decision to deploy to Canadian combat troops to Kandahar that finally pushed Hercules replacement closer to the top of the
priority list. In November 2005, a deal was announced with Lockheed Martin for 16 C-130J Hercules.
Unfortunately, under the Liberal plan, then-MND Bill Graham, bundled Hercules replacement together with the ill-considered FWSAR project (below). This Liberal deal –
denounced as 'sole sourcing' by Harper Conservatives in opposition – was cancelled soon after the Harper Government took power. The Liberal Tactical Airlift Project ceased to exist
momentarily, then morphed into the Tories' Airlift Capability Project - Tactical. Ironically, ACP-T quickly turned into a sole-sourcing deal Tory-style, resulting in an ACAN to LockheedMartin with
an order for 17 'stretch' model C-130J-30 Hercules being placed in Dec 2007. The first aircraft (130601) flew into CFB Trenton in June 2010, the last C-130J (130617) arrived at Trenton
in May 2012.
Tactical Airlifters (Procurement Documents, News Releases, and Background)
ACP-Tactical Request for 'Letters of Interest' Hercules replacement
Announcement of Lockheed Martin C-130J-30 purchase News release
Lockheed Martin C-130J Hercules
FWSAR – the Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue Project and its Tactical Aspects
Though it's tempting to simply ignore the drawn-out Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue project, FWSAR does involve several transport aspects. First, a major rational for FWSAR is sparing the
Hercules fleet – both retained 'H models and CC-130Js bought under ACP-T – from the wear-and-tear and high operating costs of SAR missions ( the idea being that
new FWSAR aircraft would be primary responders with Hercules transports providing SAR back-up like other available CF aircraft). That rationale became somewhat surreal when LockheedMartin
itself suggested that the firm might submit another Hercules model for the FWSAR contest.
FWSAR aircraft also have their own tactical transport role. This is, in part, inherited from the Arctic supply role currently performed by the existing CF FWSAR types. But the so-called
FWNOR project to replace CC-138 Twin Otters as an Northern fixed-wing utility aircraft has also been rolled into FWSAR (this may lead
to the absurd situation of replacing float- and ski-capable Twin Otters with the Air Force's desired C-27J
Spartans – which weighs almost five times as much and is incapable of operating from many Arctic strips used by 'Twotters'.
Despite the FWSAR project remaining unfilled, the Alenia C-27J Spartan can be mentioned specifically because of another FWSAR transport stipulation. Under FWSAR requirements, points will be
given to types able to transport a complete replacement propeller for a similar aircraft. Only the C-27J can do this (which lead to speculation that the FWSAR requirement was written
around the C-27J in the first place). In any case, FWSAR aircraft will be based in the south with tactical airlift (Arctic or otherwise) comprising a minor part of the $6B project.
FWSAR – Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue Project – Background Articles
FWSAR – the Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue Project
FWSAR Project Candidates: C-27J, C295, DHC-5NG, C-130J, KC-390, and V-22
FWSAR CC-115 Buffalo and Arctic Supply Arctic Sovereignty Implications
In Detail: A Canadian Forces Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue Project Timeline
ModProps: Rethinking Search and Rescue & Interim FWSAR and Arctic Utility
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