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12 hours ago, Airband said:

Police investigation puts fighter pilot call sign meetings under microscope

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Sat Sep 3, 2022 - The Canadian Press
by Lee Berthiaume

OTTAWA — A police investigation into comments made at a social gathering of fighter pilots in June has cast a spotlight on a well-known but little-understood military tradition that some worry is another example of entrenched cultural problems in Canada’s Armed Forces: the assignment of call signs.

Earlier this week, Royal Canadian Air Force commander Lt.-Gen. Eric Kenny announced that he was delaying a ceremony to install a new commander at one of Canada’s two fighter-jet bases, 3 Wing in Bagotville, Que.

Kenny attributed the decision to an ongoing military police investigation into statements made during what he described as a “call sign review board” held on June 22 at Canada’s other CF-18 base, 4 Wing in Cold Lake, Alta.

Many people would know call signs from the blockbuster "Top Gun" movies, in which Tom Cruise’s character is nicknamed “Maverick.” That call sign is a reference to the character’s refusal to follow orders and play by the military’s rules.

Canadian fighter pilots also use call signs. Anyone who has been to an air show in Canada and got a close look at a Snowbird or CF-18 might have seen the pilot’s call sign written with their real name near the cockpit.

While call signs aren’t the exclusive domain of pilots, and such nicknames are also often assigned to the weapons officers who also fly on two-man CF-18s, they aren’t widely used in other parts of the Royal Canadian Air Force.

The air force says call signs help build a sense of team and identity among fighter pilots and break down barriers between different rank levels. They also benefit communications in the air.

Assigning call signs “is meant to foster esprit de corps,” said RCAF spokesman Col. Adam Thomson. “The call sign has a practical purpose and is used for brevity and quick identification while removing some flight leadership barriers that may arise by rank or position.”

While call signs can spring up organically like any other nickname, call sign review boards like the one under investigation are a key way that they are assigned.

Despite their official-sounding name, such gatherings are social events where pilots tell stories about each other.

“Call signs are typically assigned at a unit social gathering in a location like a mess or unit social area,” Thomson said in an email.

“Often these stories recount a challenge, instance or success particular to a member. These stories inspire an individual’s call sign. Possible call signs are suggested by peers and are voted on by the group.”

Former fighter pilots say such events often involve tossing back drinks while throwing around stories about new aviators – the funnier or more embarrassing the better.

“And after one, two or three beers, if there was a funny story or a good one, the call sign would be adopted,” said former air force commander and retired lieutenant-general Yvan Blondin, whose call sign is Bad.

Former chief of the defence staff and retired general Tom Lawson, call sign Shadow, put it another way: “It’s a mini-roast is what it is.”

Such events are typically held at the end of significant training courses or exercises with senior officers on hand, which Blondin said gives the process a “semi-formal twist.” As for the other details, both former pilots said they can often vary from unit to unit.

“When we talk about a process, there's nothing formal, there's nothing in the books, there's nothing in our procedures, that says this is the process as a requirement for call signs,” Blondin said. “It doesn't exist.”

The results of such gatherings aren’t always positive. While many call signs refer to mistakes in training or personality quirks, Blondin gave one extreme example of a pilot years ago whose call sign involved a crude description of a sexual encounter.

Thomson said the air force recently conducted a review of existing call signs to determine their appropriateness “while directing that future call signs aligned with our commitment to be an inclusive organization.”

Yet it’s unclear the degree to which that review touched on the process for assigning call signs, including the conduct of review boards – which appears to lie at the heart of the ongoing military police investigation in Cold Lake.

“There’s probably a lot less alcohol than in the ‘70s and ‘80s, which makes it easier for everybody to stay on this side of the line,” Lawson said. “But it appears someone at one of these reviews was made ill at ease by a comment, or a comment was made well across the line.”

Lori Buchart, co-chair of It’s Not Just 20K, a support and advocacy group created by victims of military sexual misconduct, said it is important for the Canadian Armed Forces have rituals and traditions to build a sense of identity and boost spirits.

“The important thing for the CAF and its members is to root out the ones that cause harm or are questionable, and keep those ones that actually build morale in a healthy way,” she added.

Charlotte Duval-Lantoine of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute, who recently released a book on military sexual misconduct, said the current situation should start a discussion on how call signs are assigned to Canadian fighter pilots – and how it can be done better.

“Call signs and the way they are assigned can reveal a lot about the culture of a unit,” she said. “And like with any culture, it can go too far and take the form of bullying and berating, especially if the person receiving the call sign does not fit in the group as well as others.”

At the same time, Duval-Lantoine said the issue highlights some of the difficulties the military faces in eliminating inappropriate conduct given the various traditions that exist among different units and positions within the Armed Forces.

While both Lawson and Blondin hope call signs remain a fixture among Canadian fighter pilots, Blondin acknowledged there may be a need to impose some type of structure or control over review boards.

“I wouldn't want to get rid of them,” he said. “But I think we need some formalization. In the days we're living in now, some of the stuff is certainly not acceptable the way it is.” 

I don’t understand why the Military Police would be involved in this. Much ado about nothing…

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32 minutes ago, Skeptic said:

I suspect some on this forum flew or serviced this fighter model.

Crews unload Calgary museum's newest Cold War era jet

https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/2071039043678/

Yup. 2854.3 hours in T-33s and 4.8 on that specific aircraft (133413). One of the few I flew without tip tanks. I wouldn’t let it pass its post-inspection test flight because it rolled violently to the left whenever I pulled the stick straight back (no aileron input) to the point of buffet (onset of an accelerated stall) at 200 knots per the test card. I left the squadron before it got released, so not sure the eventual fix, if any. Many of the jets were slightly “bent” and had their own personality, but 413 was dangerous IMO.

FWIW, all the T-33s could be rolled with only elevator input, but 413 was seriously out of limits.

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17.8 hours in 413 of which 3.1 were nite.....loved those birds, 1983.3 hrs in the T-33

Lots of fun memories  and sad days when we lost a few drivers.

Lost two on our 4th wedding anniversary....It was a "check" ride and the "checkee" and his wife played cards with us the evening before.  

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CBC has commented that there will be a “Missing Person” fly by of CF18s at the Queen’s commemoration ceremony.

I guess I’m old school thinking it was a “Missing Man” formation.

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34 minutes ago, st27 said:

CBC has commented that there will be a “Missing Person” fly by of CF18s at the commemoration ceremony.

I guess I’m old school thinking it was a “Missing Man” formation.

Why the fly by ??? I honestly don't know but am guessing the "missing" kids thing ????

Yes, political correctness has run amuck.... Why just the other day, on one of our main streets in "Dotville" I reported a "person hole cover"  as being askew and requested that a city employee get it back in place and then went home and read my outboard engine personual to find out why engine was lacking full power........and had a cool drink of my favourite juice, "persongo"...

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CF Snowbirds Safe to Fly with the Remaining Airshows for this Season has been Cancelled

21 September 2022 – CF Snowbirds Facebook page

Schedule Update Article

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After a thorough risk assessment and fleet-wide inspection following the August 2nd incident in Fort St. John, BC, we can confirm that it is safe for the CT-114 Tutor fleet to safely resume flying.

Therefore, the operational pause is now lifted and the team will be heading out to Penticton, BC shortly in order to return the jets to our home base in Moose Jaw, SK.

Preparing an aerobatic demonstration to the required level for public performance requires constant training and regular flying. Having not flown since early August, our team will take the necessary time to re-train and get back in the air. Consequently, we will not be attending the remaining airshows this season.

We will start training for our 2023 season and see you all soon.

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'On the morning of the accident, the pilot conducted a routine series of pre-flight checks before proceeding to the active runway for a standard departure. Shortly after liftoff, the pilot confirmed a positive rate of climb and selected the landing gear up. Immediately after gear selection, the pilot heard a loud noise and the engine failed. The aircraft rapidly started decelerating and descending back to the runway. The pilot selected the landing gear back down and elected to land the aircraft straight ahead, however the landing gear did not have sufficient time to fully cycle back to the locked-down position. The aircraft touched down with only approximately 500 feet of runway remaining. The unlocked landing gear collapsed under the weight of the aircraft, and the aircraft skidded off the departure‑end. After approximately 1000 feet of travel, the aircraft impacted the airport perimeter fence at low speed and came to rest. The pilot secured the engine and immediately egressed the aircraft.

The aircraft sustained very serious damage but the pilot sustained no injuries.

The engine failure was due to an improperly assembled oil filter. The investigation is now analyzing the human factors that may have contributed to this occurrence.'

CT-114 Tutor - 02 Aug, 2022 - Fort St John B.C.

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1 hour ago, Airband said:

The engine failure was due to an improperly assembled oil filter.

The word "assembled" is interesting. From a maintainers point of view, I would like to know if this indicates an error on the part of the person who installed the filter on the aircraft, or if there was a faulty assembly process involved before the technician received the filter for installation. I am not familiar with the oil system on the J85 engine.

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SIGH…….maybe we were a little premature in getting rid of the 50 yr old Buffalos….more troubling is the fact there are no answers in procurement process.

https://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/mps-doubt-procurement-department-claim-there-are-no-documents-on-troubled-2-2-billion-aircraft-purchase

Quote

The Canadian government announced in December 2016 that it was purchasing 16 C-295 aircraft for fixed-wing search and rescue as part of the $2.2-billion project. The fleet was to start operating in mid-2021.

 

But the purchase has been hit by what defence insiders say are significant problems and the first planes won’t be operating until 2025 or 2026. The full operational capability of the search-and-rescue fleet has been delayed for six years. It will take until 2030 before the aircraft that were to provide search and rescue on the west coast are fully doing their jobs, the federal government acknowledges.….

the government operations committee to request from Public Services and Procurement Canada information any records related to any fixes of technical and mechanical issues that have plagued the aircraft. The committee sought briefing notes, procurement schedules, deadlines for completing work and other related records.

 

The records were to be turned over to Parliament by July 22, but PSPC has responded to the committee that it has no records on any of those issues.

 

“There are no documents outlining ‘additional costs, briefing notes, procurement schedules and deadlines for completing the work to make the (the aircraft) operational,” stated the response sent by Lorenzo Ieraci, PSPC assistant deputy minister for policy, planning and communications.

 

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Sovereignty in the Arctic and the struggles of the CC-295 Kingfisher: Richard Shimooka in the Hill Times

While some of the deficiencies of the CC-295 Kingfisher are fixable, the problems around weight, power and icing capabilities are very likely not.

 
 
 

Kingfisher-1024x639.jpg?lossy=1&strip=1&This article originally appeared in the Hill Times.

By Richard Shimooka, May 30, 2022

A few weeks ago, the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) announced that its new search and rescue (SAR) aircraft, the CC-295 Kingfisher, will not reach Initial Operational Capability (IOC) until the 2025-2026 timeframe—a decade after it was selected in a competition. In truth, it is doubtful the aircraft will ever enter into service.

SAR is far from being a “sexy” military capability. However, it is one of the more publicly appreciated and crucial functions that the RCAF provides on a day-to-day basis. So it is with some irony that the Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue (FWSAR) aircraft replacement remains among the most disappointing procurement programs in Canada.

The program’s failures are rooted in its origins over 20 years ago. Canada’s primary SAR aircraft at the time was the venerable De Havilland Buffalo. Its range and speed was limited, so it was supplemented by the CC-130 Hercules to cover areas that the Buffalo could not reach. This was problematic: the Hercules was and is one of the most heavily used capabilities in the RCAF, and much more costly to operate. As a result, by the early 2000s, it was envisioned that the FWSAR program would lead to a single fleet replacement aircraft capable of covering all of Canada’s SAR response needs.

At the time, the Department of National Defence could only find one aircraft that could meet its requirements, the Leonardo C-27J. The aircraft was fast enough and possessed the range, size and cockpit visibility to cover all of Canada’s FWSAR needs. Another option would be to acquire additional Hercules, though these aircraft were seen as providing too much plane for the country’s SAR needs. A third was the CASA (now Airbus) C-295. At the time, this aircraft was found to be ill suited—it was not particularly powerful, had insufficient speed and range to cover all of Canada’s Area Of Responsibility (AOR) in one crew day, lacked cockpit visibility essential for maneuvering and posed difficulties for SAR technicians to move around inside when fully equipped with rescue gear. Because the C-295 was not able to meet a number of Mandatory Requirements, it was ruled out too.

The C-27J was to be sole source selected, and the government, prepared an Advanced Contract Award Notice (ACAN), that gave potential competitors time to respond if they could meet the requirements. It was likely that the C-27 would be selected. Yet, about a week before the ACAN, the entire purchase was scrapped due to circumstances that remain unclear today.

Progress on Buffalo replacement stalled until 2014. In that year, the Conservative government also unveiled the Defence Procurement Strategy (DPS), a series of reforms intended to improve outcomes after several controversies over the prior decade. Two areas were of particular relevance to FWSAR.

First, it was part of a broader effort to move away from sole-sourcing procurements and mandate competition in all but exceptional cases. Second, it was related to the Industrial and Technical Benefits (ITB) policy. Previously, meeting the offset requirements were a pass/fail. The DPS enabled ITBs to now play a role in a platform’s selection—it could be up to 25 per cent of the assessment criteria. The percentage is misleading. If all other factors are equal, the 25 per cent could be decisive in a selection. This occurred with FWSAR, which was one of the first major programs to utilize the new procurement system.

Under the mandate of creating competition, the requirements were loosened significantly, allowing the C-295 to compete and, thus, blunting the C-27J’s advantages. The FWSAR aircraft no longer had to be able to reach all parts of Canada’s AOR within one-crew day. Airbus also promised over 30 modifications that would allow the aircraft to meet the minimum requirements. These changes allowed the C-295’s industrial benefits package to be a decisive factor in its selection, which was backed by the aviation conglomerate Airbus.

Since winning the competition, the C-295 has struggled to meet its promised performance. Modifications increased the aircraft’s weight and is now underpowered for its missions. In the event of an engine failure, such as during take-off or when flying through mountainous canyons, the aircraft might not have sufficient power to operate safely. This, along with a number of other major deficiencies, such as with its avionics, operation in icing, paradrop limitations and problematic centre of gravity, severely impacts the aircraft’s ability to operate effectively, and even safely, in its given role.

Consequently, the recent announcement to push back the IOC to the 2025 timeframe is a clear punt by the current government to offload these problems until a later date. While some of the deficiencies are fixable (e.g., avionics), the problems around weight, power and icing capabilities are very likely not— as they are fundamental to the aircraft’s design. There is a significant chance that Canada will need to scrap the entire $2.9-billion purchase, and seek a different outcome.

The debacle has broader significance for Canadian defence procurement beyond SAR, especially with Canada potentially spending tens of billions of dollars in new programs to defend the Arctic. By artificially trying to create competition where one cannot effectively exist, and demanding as much domestic offsets as possible, this lays the foundation for future failures on much larger projects.

Richard Shimooka is a senior fellow at the Macdonald-Laurier Institute.

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Investigating the latest SAR equipment

Publishing Details

Avionics

10 Jan 2022
Dr Joetey Attariwala
Featured in Issue 123 | January/February 2022

 

Dr Joetey Attariwala details the incredible diversity of new generation of fixed- and rotary-wing SAR equipment, from cell phone compatibility to the technology changing the future of optical radar

Search and rescue (SAR) includes many specialty sub-fields. In aviation, SAR is typically rendered by fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, although unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) are slowly making their way into the domain, albeit strictly in a search capacity as they currently struggle to provide rescue capabilities. However, SAR for the new generation, across aircraft and the equipment which operators utilize, will undoubtedly enhance safety of rescuers and victims, as well as improving the efficiency of operations.

CC-295 Kingfisher to rejuvenate Canadian SAR fleet

Without question, the most significant new-generation SAR capability in the world today is the Royal Canadian Air Force’s (RCAF) CC-295 Kingfisher, which was born from Canada’s Fixed Wing Search and Rescue (FWSAR) project. The US$2.4-billion contract calls for the procurement of 16 aircraft, which will ultimately replace the CC-115 Buffalo and CC-130H Hercules aircraft that are currently tasked with providing fixed-wing SAR in Canada.

Based on the Airbus C-295W, the Kingfisher has been specifically designed for enhanced mission effectiveness in the SAR role. Among improvements are a new Collins Aerospace Pro Line Fusion avionics suite consisting of four high-resolution 14.1-inch touchscreen displays, which allow for improved cockpit human-machine interface, including night vision goggle (NVG) capability, and compliance with future navigation and air traffic control requirements. The cabin operation has been optimized with a wireless intercommunication system and relocation of cargo cabin elements. The aircraft has improved performance with winglets, higher cruise speeds, and new generators which provide 50 per cent more electrical power.

The aircraft is further enhanced with vortex generators on the rear ramp, streamlined exterior lighting, internal HF antenna, SATCOM, a ditching hatch on the forward upper area of the main cabin, and most notably the total enclosure of the main landing gear. Improved Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities are provided by the next generation Fully Integrated Tactical System (FITS) which is comprised of two consoles consisting of dual-screen 24-inch high-definition displays coupled to modern sensors – specifically the L3Harris WESCAM MX-15 electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) system with short-wave IR capability, a ELTA Systems surveillance radar, Automatic Identification System (AIS) and more, all of which finally brings SAR for the RCAF into the 21st century.

plane
 

 

Jorge Tamarit Degenhardt, Head of FWSAR C295 Program at Airbus Defence and Space, said: “We have invested close to one million man hours of engineering in developing the FWSAR version. We have modified almost all the systems in the aircraft, and we have brought the C-295 to the next level. One of the main modifications we have done is related to the aerodynamic performance of the machine.

“One of the challenges we had was to bring the C295 farther and faster, so the Air Force is able to cope with the SAR missions in remote regions within Canada. In rough numbers, we have increased the range close to eight per cent and reduced the fuel consumption around four to five per cent. We have integrated winglets, which are now standard to the fleet, and we have also developed a full enclosure of the main landing gear which is intended to significantly reduce the drag of the aircraft. We have also installed vortex generators in the tail cone of the aircraft.”

Degenhardt also went into more detail about the integration of the Collins Pro Line Fusion: “There are larger tactile displays with loads of information on it — we have terrain awareness and warning system information, overlaid weather radar information, and we have a synthetic vision system through the EVS cameras in the front of the aircraft which can be displayed in the cockpit. The C-295 is an amazing platform for Canada — we made it smarter, we made it faster and it flies even farther.”

Sensor upgrades for Canadian SAR

Speaking about the Kingfisher, Harjit Sajjan, Canada’s Minister for National Defence, said: “The new fleet’s powerful sensors will help you locate people or objects beyond line of sight, and the state-of-the-art communication will help you locate and communicate with people on the ground. This will fundamentally change how we do search and rescue.”

The Kingfisher represents a transformational change in capability for RCAF, according to Lieutenant-General Al Meinzinger, Commander of the RCAF: “The venerable Buff and Hercules have served us well over the past decades. As we look to the future, the capabilities that the Kingfisher will bring will further enhance our aviators ability to carry out their SAR mission. The transition to the new fixed-wing SAR fleet is a tremendous opportunity for the RCAF, and will take a great deal of dedication, precision, and focus. We’re moving from two fleets of aircraft to one common fleet, all the while having to maintain the continued level of SAR service here in Canada – this is an awesome task.”

To integrate the Kingfisher’s new generation capabilities, the RCAF has reactivated 418 Squadron as a SAR operational training squadron which will be embedded in the SAR Centre of Excellence at Canadian Forces Base Comox, also known as 19 Wing Comox. Once delivered, the fleet of Kingfisher aircraft will be stationed at bases Comox, Winnipeg, Trenton, and Greenwood.

The FWSAR Project includes the construction of a new training center in Comox, which will be used to train both maintenance and aircrews. Built by aviation manufacturer CAE Canada, the center includes 10 classrooms, as well as sophisticated training devices such as a full-flight simulator, a cockpit procedures trainer, a sensor station simulator, and an aircraft maintenance trainer. That maintenance trainer aircraft arrived at CFB Comox in February 2020, after which it was disassembled and then reassembled inside the new training center. Two CC-295 Kingfishers are now in Canada, although are not yet in service as training in earnest has yet to begin.

Cormorant Mid-Life Upgrades

Not to be outdone by their fixed-wing brethren, the RCAF’s rotary-wing CH-149 Cormorant SAR fleet is also set for a new generation of capabilities. The long-range helicopter fleet was introduced into service in 2001, however the fleet is devoid of any modern sensor equipment. The Cormorant Mid-Life Upgrade (CMLU) seeks to resolve that issue among others, thereby ensuring the aircraft remains a relevant SAR asset which complies with new and emerging flying regulations and extend the life expectancy of the Cormorant to at least 2042.

The CMLU project is still in the project definition phase, but the upgrade will in part utilize the VH-71 Kestrel aircraft acquired from the United States and increase the overall Cormorant fleet to 16 aircraft.

Speaking about the CMLU, Colonel Dany Poitras, former Commander of 19 Wing Comox, commented: “The upgrade is intended to bring a state-of-the-art avionics system which will be integrated with radar and electro-optical sensors. The upgrade will also deliver a Helicopter Terrain Avoidance System, an upgrade to the Automatic Identification System, and a cell phone detection system. These upgrades will ensure we are compliant with changes in regulations. It is important to note that what is in the scope of CMLU might not be what’s delivered in the end based on pricing and so on, so it’s hard to speak about specifics as we’re negotiating with Leonardo right now.”

 

Mental health training for SAR personnel and emergency services

Andy Elwood knows first-hand the mental strain that emergency services and SAR personnel are under, and the effect this can have on their wellbeing. His focus now lies on delivering…
Read More

10 Jun 2019

 

 Andy Elwood

helicopter
 

ViDAR - offering better situational awareness at a lower cost

Sensor capacity like CASSAR can deliver a new generation of SAR capability to existing platforms. Another sensor which is gaining considerable interest in SAR is Sentient Vision Systems’ ViDAR (Visual Detection and Ranging), the world’s first software-based Optical Radar solution.

ViDAR is a maritime-wide area optical search system that can operate up to Sea State 6. The high-definition system, mountable on fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft and UAVs, is capable of autonomously detecting very small objects on the ocean surface that would otherwise be invisible to a visual observer and other sensor payloads. It consists of multiple fixed Electro-Optic and Infrared high resolution cameras with a combined field of view of about 180 degrees ahead of the aircraft. The system utilizes Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision and Deep Learning to process onboard video imagery in real time.

According to Sentient Vision Systems, ViDAR operates optically so it is unaffected by white caps and other effects that impact technology such as radar. When ViDAR detects a target, it alerts the sensor operator by sending a thumbnail image to the mission system display and a geolocation marker on a moving map display that provides the object’s updated location, bearing and range from platform.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority recently made news when one of its Challenger 604 Tier 1 fixed-wing SAR aircraft, which was fitted with ViDAR, spotted and rescued a boater who was knocked off his yacht.

Sentient Vision Systems has also become an Original Equipment Manufacturer offering a quick install, all-in-one ViDAR pod system – the VMS-5 (ViDAR Maritime Surveillance) Day/Night Optical Radar pod. The VMS-5 pod uses an array of multi-camera EO and Long Wave IR sensors to provide 180-degree search coverage. It is compatible with COTS mounting systems, wing strut mounts or bespoke mounting solutions, and delivers a very low Size, Weight and Power impact.

“ViDAR offers customers much better wide-area situational awareness at a lower cost than anything else available,” said Dr Paul Boxer, Sentient Managing Director. “This is especially the case in SAR operations. By building our own integrated ViDAR pods, we’re able to offer customers an enhanced surveillance capability backed up by dedicated support.” He continued: “One size definitely does not fit all. Which is why we’re developing a range of ViDAR pods and installations for different missions depending on the speed and altitude of the aircraft and whether operations call for day-only or day-night capability.”

Knowledge sharing and best practice

Systems like those mentioned above absolutely deliver a new generation of capabilities, but there is a relatively high cost associated with them, and the overwhelming majority of small and medium SAR operators around the world will find it difficult to adopt them. Speaking to this reality was Rob Munday, Instructor with SR3 Rescue Concepts: “For every large SAR organization, there’s probably 100 who operate on shoestring budgets. So it’s almost irrelevant what new equipment or technology is out there if an operator can’t afford it.

“Everything boils down to good training, so if someone can come up with a portable virtual reality training device with decent hand tracking and a software solution that is reasonably priced, preferably open source, I think that would go a long way to improve SAR for the next generation.”

Adding to those sentiments was Luc Deffense, SAR expert at Deffense Consulting Inc: “Like most new items in aviation, there is a long trial period before new technology becomes accepted in the market as a standard. Too many units find something that works and keep the knowledge of these to themselves. I believe information sharing is the best way to promulgate knowledge and safety so we all become better rescuers.”

Sharing information, best practice, and knowledge about the best tools for the jobs are undoubtedly going to be how SAR progresses for smaller operators in the future. While the military may have all the money, and the ability to be on the cutting edge of technological SAR solutions, the need for these pieces of equipment to trickle down to smaller operators is still there. Open source software that is compatible with a wide variety of virtual reality hardware could open up the market significantly, and allow for a wider adoption of the latest training solutions.

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Dr Joetey Attariwala is quite an industry fluffer. 

The Kingfisher is an unmitigated disaster. The three aircraft that have actually been delivered are hangar queens. The get dragged out once a month, started up and then quickly rolled back in to hiding. Not a single line pilot has been trained on it. Testing has revealed multiple problems with basic airworthyness of the Airforce variant. If they ever get signed off,  Operational roles will not include deploying SAR tech's without major alterations as jumpers risk being struck by the tail as they exited. 

It's what happens when Govt minions in charge of purchasing get overwhelmed by the glossy brochures of unproven prototype equipment. 

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Viking Air wanted to either rework the Buffalo or build a new airplane. The RCAF would have had a better airplane, help build the aerospace industry in Canada and the guy who says he is also saying that he supports Canadian workers could have provided jobs in Canada.

Refurbished Buffalo aircraft would be in the air by now and I don't think we would have had to wait much longer for a brand new designed and made in Canada aircraft. It is so disheartening to see this sort of thing going on.

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1 hour ago, bm330 said:

Dr Joetey Attariwala is quite an industry fluffer. 

The Kingfisher is an unmitigated disaster. The three aircraft that have actually been delivered are hangar queens. The get dragged out once a month, started up and then quickly rolled back in to hiding. Not a single line pilot has been trained on it. Testing has revealed multiple problems with basic airworthyness of the Airforce variant. If they ever get signed off,  Operational roles will not include deploying SAR tech's without major alterations as jumpers risk being struck by the tail as they exited. 

It's what happens when Govt minions in charge of purchasing get overwhelmed by the glossy brochures of unproven prototype equipment. 

I am so disappointed and saddened that our government has let us down so badly with this aircraft purchase. How in the hell did they f**k this up on such a gargantuan scale?? I have a few friends that were hired 3 years ago to maintain these aircraft. They were very excited at the time... not so much any more. Still getting paid though, so there's that...

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