Canada's new CE-145C Vigilance

Gepubliceerd op 25 februari 2024 om 20:04

© Royal Canadian Air Force

In July 2018, the Canadian Special Operations Forces Command (CANSOFCOM) made public that they intended to order three new Beechcraft 350ER King Airs as Manned Airborne Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (MAISR) aircraft.

The King Airs were ordered through the US Foreign Military Sales (FMS) programme. The twin-turboprop aircraft have been configured with military grade advanced sensors, and secure communications equipment. MAISR will have the capacity to be deployed on short notice and will provide the armed forces with better situational awareness on the ground and thus positively affect the ability of commanders to make decisions leading to mission success.

The agreement with the US Government was finalised in April 2019 and has a total value of CAD 247 million (USD 187 million). In December 2019, Textron Aviation (USA) was awarded a USD 37,2 million FMS contract to supply three Beechcraft King Air 350ER aircraft.

In November 2020, the Department of National Defence (DND) awarded L3Harris Technologies a firm-fixed price contract of an undisclosed amount to modify three King Air 350ERs into intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft for the country’s special operations forces. Two aircraft are still with L3 Harris in the USA for integration work and painting.

The three King Airs were registered to Textron Aviation at Redstone-Arsenal (AL) for this purpose, and have the following construction numbers: FL-1218 (N1218H), FL-1228 (N1228C), and FL-1233 (N1233K). The first aircraft, N1218H, was delivered on National Aviation Day in Canada, 23 February 2024. CANSOFCOM revealed the aircraft have been given the designation CE-145C according to the Canadian Military Type Designation System. The chosen name for the aircraft is Vigilance.

It is as yet unknown which unit will operate the CE-145C Vigilance, they are however operated by and for CANSOFCOM. The first aircraft has been delivered to Trenton (Ont.).

Published by: Giovanni van Erven / @gve_photographing

Maak jouw eigen website met JouwWeb