|Quoting Spacepope (Reply 3):|
And specifically, what advantage would such an aircraft have over the already existing P-8?
Well, "specifically" it would be built by a Canadian company employing Canadians (I know, there's lots of foreign subcontracting). But given the current spat we're having with "Buy America" language in the US stimulus package, and given the battle being waged between Boeing and Airbus over that tanker project, maybe a "Buy Canada" clause isn't such a bad thing.
As the article points out, we used to do this kind of thing all the time. In the 50s, the RCAF flew a Canadian designed and built fighter -- the CF-100 -- and if they hadn't cancelled the Arrow, that would have continued well into the 70s and perhaps beyond. But when you combined the government's lack of vision with an outrageously expensive RCAF weapons requirement, the plane was doomed.
Whether it would have any operational advantage over the P-8 I don't know, since no one at Bombardier has addressed this possibility and drawn up any specs. Putting aside the rah-rah nationalism, I wouldn't expect the government to buy a Canadian product if it didn't meet the mission requirements and wasn't cost-effective. Unfortunately, we've had a sorry history of avoiding home-grown products even when they do meet the mission requirements.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.