Tag Archives: Canadian Navy

Mark Collins – Government Announces Plan to Buy New Helicopters for Canadian Coast Guard, Part 3

Further to this post (with its hint), a comprehensive review of possible contenders and the choppers’ missions–with a similar hint:

Coast Guard Helicopters by Peter Pigott
©Frontline Security Vol.7 No.3

What may tip the scales in favour of any bid proposal – besides proven performance especially with foreign coast guards – will be Industrial Regional Benefits and the amount of “Canadian content” each company has. In 1984, a key reason that the Canadian government chose the Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm Bo 105 (over the traditional U.S. choice) for the Coast Guard, is said to be because the German helicopters were to be assembled at MBB Canada’s Fort Erie facility – renamed Eurocopter Canada Ltd in 1992.

No helicopter manufacturer has a larger Canadian footprint than Bell Helicopter. In the Canadian aerospace industry as a whole, only Bombardier is bigger. Established in 1986, Bell Helicopter’s Mirabel facility is home to more than 2,000 employees ­providing engineering design, manufacturing and support for Bell Helicopter’s commercial helicopter business. With its 61,000 m2 (656,600 sq.ft.) of hangar, assembly and office space, the plant has produced more than 4,000 commercial variant helicopters. The Mirabel facility supports Bell customers with airframe design, product development, composites, complete integration, flight testing, certification and product support.

A second Canadian footprint is located at Calgary International Airport. For more than 35 years, its Canadian Supply Center has been responsible for providing Bell Helicopter parts, sales and distribution for the Bell fleet, both commercial and military in Canada…

In this competition, Bell may have an advantage over the other manufacturers due to the fact that the CCG already uses its 206 and 212 models. The Canadian public is also familiar with its machines as Bell’s CH146 Griffon did such stalwart work with the Canadian Forces in Afghanistan. The Griffon is the militarized version of the Bell 412 medium twin [more here]. The 412EP has all the advantages of the 212 – like the large cabin, payload, and performance – but is much more. While the 212’s designed useful load is 2,261 kg (4,985 lb), for instance, the 412EP can carry 2,313 kg (5,100 lb). Partially because of its four-bladed main rotor and higher transmission ratings, the 412EP outperforms its predecessor. It has a maximum cruise speed of 226 km/h (122 knots) versus 185 km/h for the 212 and a range of 659 km (356 nautical miles) to the 212’s 424 km…

Note that the RCN’s planned new Arctic/Offshore Patrol Ships will rely on those CCG helicopters when up north:

Arctic/Offshore Patrol Ships to Assert Northern Sovereignty With Unarmed Helos

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Research Fellow at the Canadian Defence & Foreign Affairs Institute