Mark Collins – New RCAF Fixed-Wing SAR: Evaluation of Bids Starts

Further to this post a month ago,

RCAF Fixed-Wing SAR Bids In: No LockMart But Embraer

’twill be interesting to see in fact how long it takes to end the never never land of this well over a decade long procurement project:

Rigorous testing of Canada’s fixed wing search and rescue candidate aircraft to begin soon

The Canadian military’s fixed wing search and rescue project continues to move along. The bids went in Jan. 11 and the bid evaluation is now underway. An extensive testing of the candidate aircraft is soon to begin.

“Bid evaluation, which includes aircraft testing, is expected to take about six months,” Public Procurement and Services Canada spokeswoman Jessica Kingsbury told Defence Watch. “Testing is expected to begin in March and will take place at bidders’ facilities.”

Kingsbury would not say which aircraft are being tested. “In order to preserve the integrity of the process, the department can provide no further information while the evaluation is underway,” she added.

(It was not explained by Public Procurement how releasing the names of the aircraft to be tested would undermine the integrity of the process.)

But sources say the three planes that were bid will all be tested. Those include Alenia’s C-27J, the C-295 from Airbus and the KC-390 from Embraer.

It is expected that testing of each aircraft will take about three weeks, followed by another three weeks for evaluation of those tests, sources told Defence Watch. After that is done the test team will proceed to the next candidate…

The FWSAR project is divided into a contract for the acquisition of the aircraft and another contract for 20 years of in-service support.

On verra.

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds

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