The U.S. State Department has cleared Canada to purchase a package of upgrades for its fleet of CF-18 Super Hornets, including upgraded radars and weapons, intended to serve as a bridge between the legacy fleet and Canada’s future fighter.
Among the upgrades included in this potential package: 50 Sidewinder AIM-9X Block II tactical missiles; 38 APG-79(V)4 active electronically scanned array radars; 38 APG-79(V)4 AESA radar A1 kits; 46 F/A-18A wide-band RADOMEs; upgrades to the Advanced Distributed Combat Training System; and technical assistance to support the upgraded jets.
LightningZ71 wrote:The update also addresses the fact that they had the helmet mounted queuing system for hihg off bore targeting for the AIM-9X sidewinders, but had none of them actually in inventory.
thedrive.com has a decent article on this whole transaction, though the raw details aren't any different from the defensenews article.
LightningZ71 wrote:Canada had also gained the right to purchase the new AIM-120D AMRAM missiles a few years ago, but couldn't fully take advantage of the additional range of those missiles because the older radar on their CF-18 fighters didn't have sufficient engagement range for them. This addresses that deficiency. Maybe they will now actually make that AIM-120D purchase?
The Defence Team has been hard at work over the last several months. We’ve opened bidding on design and construction contracts for new fighter aircraft facilities at 3 Wing Bagotville and 4 Wing Cold Lake, our two main operating bases for Canada’s fighter aircraft. This infrastructure will support the long-term operation and maintenance of 88 new aircraft that will be procured for the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) through the Future Fighter Capability Project (FFCP).
These infrastructure investments will have a significant economic impact in Alberta and Quebec – combined, we expect these construction contracts to total over $500 million, and create more than 900 jobs over the next several years. We’re planning to award the design-build contract for the Cold Lake fighter aircraft facility in August 2020, with Bagotville following in September 2020.
Through the $19 billion Future Fighter Capability Project, the Government of Canada will procure a replacement for the CF-18. However, the requirement that the future fighter be “seamlessly interoperable” with key allies calls into question whether the competitive selection process can be run in good faith. This study argues that contemporary Canadian defence policy is oriented around partnerships with other states, especially the US, and that interoperability would therefore best be attained through the selection of a fifth-generation American platform. However, it is unclear that the FFCP evaluation criteria, which include mandatory and rated technical requirements as well as pillars for cost and industrial offsets, account for high-end tactical networking and new allied technical standards. The FFCP may result in the acquisition of a type that prevents the CAF from interoperating “seamlessly” with allies over its lifecycle. This risk undermines Canada’s reliance on partnerships for national defence.
The bids are in for Canada’s fighter competition, and three companies will go head-to-head for the chance to build 88 new jets.
The Canadian government on Friday confirmed that the field is down to two American entrants — Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and Boeing’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet — as well as Swedish aerospace manufacturer Saab’s Gripen E. All companies submitted proposals before the July 31 deadline.
The contest is scheduled to be decided in 2022, with the first aircraft delivery projected in 2025. Up to CA$19 billion (U.S. $14 billion) is up for grabs.
744SPX wrote:If they could get the SH block III WITH the F414 EPE (which for some reason the Navy refuses to adopt) then the F-18E/F is a viable option. Otherwise the F-35 is the only aircraft that makes sense. So, the F-35 is the only choice as the upgraded F414 which should have been introduced 10 years ago will clearly never be purchased by the US and therefore not be available to Canada except at great cost.
Oroka wrote:744SPX wrote:If they could get the SH block III WITH the F414 EPE (which for some reason the Navy refuses to adopt) then the F-18E/F is a viable option. Otherwise the F-35 is the only aircraft that makes sense. So, the F-35 is the only choice as the upgraded F414 which should have been introduced 10 years ago will clearly never be purchased by the US and therefore not be available to Canada except at great cost.
Initial numbers I have seen puts the Block 3 Rhino at $70M each... with the F-35A at $77.9M, the Super Hornet isnt that much of a deal any more. With the Gripen E coming in at around $85M each with lower performance... other than to save a few bucks, I cant see why they would buy the F/A-18E/F.
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