Author Topic: JUSTAS: the project to buy armed Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) UAVs  (Read 125938 times)

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Offline tomahawk6

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Neither Global Hawk or Triton appear to be armed. I like Reaper as it has seen put an end to many of our enemies. Triton or Global Hawk might put an end to manned surveillance but I hope not.

Reaper Cost:
Unit cost: $64.2 million (includes four aircraft, sensors, GCSs, and Comm.) (fiscal 2006 dollars) 

Offline Chris Pook

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Is being armed a major issue in the Arctic?

Satellites aren't armed and yet they are integral to understanding what is going on in the area and allowing for other resources to be deployed in a timely fashion.  Rather than seeing the RPAS systems as unmanned CP-140s don't they also have value if they are nothing more than low-altitude, re-targetable "satellites" that stay on station and provide eyes on the scene?

And with that, does the RPAS service have to be a uniformed service or could it, like the satellite capability, be a civilian service?
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

"If change isn’t allowed to be a process, it becomes an event." - Penny Mordaunt 10/10/2019

Offline Dimsum

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Is being armed a major issue in the Arctic?

Satellites aren't armed and yet they are integral to understanding what is going on in the area and allowing for other resources to be deployed in a timely fashion.  Rather than seeing the RPAS systems as unmanned CP-140s don't they also have value if they are nothing more than low-altitude, re-targetable "satellites" that stay on station and provide eyes on the scene?

And with that, does the RPAS service have to be a uniformed service or could it, like the satellite capability, be a civilian service?

Good point, and that's why I see both armed and unarmed RPAS being useful. 

If unarmed and only for domestic patrols (or within our EEZ at least), then there's really no difference whether uniformed services fly it or not - like what Transport Canada does with the Dash-7 and Dash-8s with the NASP.  If it becomes an expeditionary capability and/or armed then I believe the armed forces (RCAF for large ones, Army/Navy for smaller ones) should fly it.
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

Offline Chris Pook

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I agree entirely on the expeditionary force being a uniformed service (RCAF most probably).

I suppose the question becomes: Can we afford two fleets?  One for domestic service and one for overseas duties.

Conversely, do we have to afford two fleets if the requirements of the expeditionary force and the domestic force are just too dissimilar?

In the past we have justified buying equipment necessary for expeditionary service on the basis that we can shoe-horn it into a domestic role.  In other instances we have bought kit for domestic roles and then made do with it on expedition.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

"If change isn’t allowed to be a process, it becomes an event." - Penny Mordaunt 10/10/2019

Offline Chris Pook

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Just as  ;D a reminder of what we are up against -



75% of the population in 2006 lived in the red areas of the cities.
24% of the population lived in the adjacent rural areas
1% of our 30,000,000 - or 300,000 people - lived in the rest of the country.

In addition we have our EEZ and Continental Shelf areas



And, further, we have our International Fisheries Organization and SAR responsibilities



15,540,000 km2 to survey and patrol and cover.

As a good, international, citizen, laying claim to all of that surface, we should, at least, be able to monitor what is going on in our claim.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

"If change isn’t allowed to be a process, it becomes an event." - Penny Mordaunt 10/10/2019

Offline MarkOttawa

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RADARSAT Constellation is to help with all that monitoring, esp. up north:

Quote
Radarsat Constellation aims to launch Wednesday [June 12]
...
The $1-billion Radarsat Constellation Mission (RCM) will be similar in some ways to Radarsats -1 and -2, but with three satellites spaced at equal distances around the globe it will be able to go more places and provide more pictures, faster.

(All the Radarsats orbit almost from pole to pole while the Earth rotates under them. This gives coverage of the whole planet. They will be about 600 kilometres above Earth.)

“One of the main applications for Radarsat data is for surveillance,” he noted. Canada, especially National Defence, wants to keep track of what ships are approaching our coast or going through the Northwest Passage.

The satellites will also have information from transponders on ships, which will tell which ships are identifying themselves and which are incognito.

Radarsat technology is also very good at mapping sea ice and determining how dangerous a particular ice area is, valuable information for ship captains...
https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/radarsat-constellation-aims-to-launch-wednesday

Earlier:

Quote
RADARSAT Constellation: New Canadian Satellites and Maritime, Arctic Surveillance, Part 2
https://mark3ds.wordpress.com/2016/06/20/mark-collins-radarsat-constellation-new-canadian-satellites-and-maritime-arctic-surveillance-part-2/

Mark
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SkyGuardian is the MQ-9B.  Reaper is the MQ-9A. 

Realistically, the Arctic is so big that something more like Global Hawk or Triton is required to cover it.

It was my understanding that the MQ-9B has some pretty significant endurance and range improvements compared to the MQ-9A.  Not that I'm comparing them to the Global Hawk which seems to be an entirely different class of RPA.

Offline MarkOttawa

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As for Global Hawk, Transport Canada may be a player:

Quote
Transport Canada looking at used German drone to patrol Arctic

A used German drone is one of a handful of aircraft under consideration by Transport Canada for its long-delayed Arctic surveillance program.

A spokeswoman for the department said no decision has been made about the kind of remotely-piloted system the department will purchase.

Marie-Anyk Cote said the plan is to buy an aircraft to detect and monitor oil spills, survey ice levels and marine habitats and keep track of shipping and ice movement in Canada's far northern waters.

"As part of its technical assessment, the government sought information from suppliers to better understand the technology and the solutions available," Cote said in an email.

The Associated Press reported on Monday that Canada was negotiating with Germany to purchase a secondhand Global Hawk surveillance drone, which originally cost the Germans $823 million.
'Premature'

Cote said "it is still premature to speculate which remotely piloted aircraft system will be purchased" and that the evaluation is still underway.

In a statement issued to AP, Germany's defence ministry said talks with Canada were planned, but declined to comment on a possible sale price or closure date.

The news surfaced in a response to lawmakers tabled by the German government in the Bundestag, Germany's parliament. It stated that Germany has decided to "begin concrete negotiations with Canada for the sale of the Euro Hawk aircraft, two ground stations and possibly certain spare parts."

Northrop Grumman, the maker of the Global Hawk, pitched the Canadian military on buying the high-altitude surveillance system a few years ago...
https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/drone-arctic-transport-canada-1.4838364

Would be for National Aerial Surveillance Program (note also aircraft involved):
http://www.tc.gc.ca/en/programs-policies/programs/national-aerial-surveillance-program.html

Mark
Ottawa
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Offline Dimsum

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It was my understanding that the MQ-9B has some pretty significant endurance and range improvements compared to the MQ-9A.  Not that I'm comparing them to the Global Hawk which seems to be an entirely different class of RPA.

Yes, and yes.  If GA's numbers are to be believed then the MQ-9B has 1.5x the endurance and payload of the MQ-9A.  The MQ-9B's big improvements would be that it's compliant with civilian air traffic, which is huge if you want to operate in domestic airspaces, and potentially anti-ice/de-ice which is important in Canada.

The Global Hawk/Triton is an entirely different class of RPA - High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) v. MQ-9's Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE).  Basically, flying at 50-60kft v 20-30kft.
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

Offline Colin P

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Offline MarkOttawa

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Molasses-speed, some sunny day:

Quote
RPAS to Detect, Identify and Track [and kill some] Targets

Through Initiatives 50 and 91 of Strong, Secure, Engaged, Canada is looking at acquiring Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) capability to perform precision strikes to support Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) domestic and international operations.

In May this year, Canada invited potential suppliers to submit their proposals. L3 Technologies MAS Inc. and the United States Government and General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. are the two qualified suppliers who will go on to the next phase of the procurement process and be invited to submit bids for this project.

A contract is expected to be awarded in 2022/23 with the first delivery slated for 2024/25.

Vanguard recently spoke with Major Jason Furlong, Project Director for the RPAS Project. Maj Furlong is a CP-140 Aurora Air Combat Systems Officer with the Royal Canadian Air Force. A graduate of the Royal Military College of Canada, his 27 years of service have seen him serve all over Canada, and exchange tours with the Royal Air Force and the US Navy where he flew the Nimrod and P-8A Poseidon respectively.

Maj Furlong, it’s no secret that it has taken the Canadian Armed Forces a long time – over a decade – to convince the Government of Canada to acquire armed drones. Attempts were made starting back in 2006, which finally bore fruit in 2017 by being included in Strong, Secure, Engaged. Can you shed some light as to this delay and what has changed to cause a push for RPAS now?

Canada’s defence policy, Strong, Secure, Engaged (SSE), set an objective to reinforce relations with key partners and respond to conflicts and crises abroad, including support for peace and stability operations. Based on SSE direction, as noted in initiatives 50 and 91, the release for the request for proposal (RFP) for a remotely piloted aircraft system (RPAS) is planned for the 2020-2021 fiscal year. In order to meet this timeline, an invitation to qualify was published and resulted in a list of qualified suppliers in May 2019...

Canada’s operating environment represents some of the most challenging conditions for the successful operation of such a system. Recent technological advances have shaped available systems to the point where they align with RCAF requirements and justify such an investment.

The aim of the Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) Project is to procure a new fleet of armed medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) remotely piloted aircraft and related equipment capable of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and precision strikes in support of Canadian Armed Forces operations.

The system will multiply the effectiveness of our deployed forces and will complement existing platforms within the CAF. As a truly joint asset, the system will modernize our capabilities and bring us in line with our allies to better operate in coalition environments.

Furthermore, the RPAS can be employed domestically to augment the efforts underway for maritime domain awareness by monitoring our vast maritime approaches, including the Arctic. The breadth of the RPAS capability is such that it is able to support all eight of the core CAF missions outlined in SSE...

Operating RPAS in Canada’s Arctic, especially with the lack of access to bandwidth in the high Arctic and severe weather conditions will be quite challenging. How do you plan to combat these challenges?

Advancements in a variety of new commercial communications systems and managed bandwidth show promise to enable operations in high-latitude regions. Other projects directed by RCAF will serve to enhance RPAS and other capabilities, which are required to operate in the Arctic.

For example, Strong, Secure, Engaged Initiative 85 calls for the development of a satellite communications constellation that will deliver Arctic communications infrastructure. The Enhanced Satellite Communication Project – Polar (ESCP-P) will provide the CAF with narrowband and wideband satellite communications (SATCOM), essential for beyond line of site (BLOS) communications over the Arctic and the rest of the Canadian area of responsibility (AOR). The project will be developed in parallel with RPAS, and both are scheduled to achieve Full Operational Capability within the next 12 years [emphasis added, more molasses]...
https://vanguardcanada.com/2019/11/18/rpas-to-detect-identify-and-track-targets/

Mark
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Offline Eye In The Sky

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I'm not even throwing my hat in the 'interested in the Payload Op positions' hat, else I get sucked over to some basement office in a forgotten building waiting for tails and missions.  Actually, I find this embarrassing for our military.
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Offline Humphrey Bogart

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I'm not even throwing my hat in the 'interested in the Payload Op positions' hat, else I get sucked over to some basement office in a forgotten building waiting for tails and missions.  Actually, I find this embarrassing for our military.

It's very embarrassing.  We had RPAs a decade ago, just like we had Kiowas with Data Downlink at Oka  8)

Going backwards with forward momentum  ;D
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Going backwards with forward momentum  ;D
Another t-shirt right there.
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Offline Good2Golf

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It’s embarrassing until you accept the fact the Govt deliberately throttles major activities like JUSTAS/RPAS and only lets them move forward when:
a) they want it to move forward to advance a higher-than-defence priority, or
b) the long drawn out situation becomes politically untenable (ie. risk to the incumbent political party losing an element of control over their ongoing destiny that would endanger their continued control of Government).

Note that military capability requirement factors neither in a) nor b).

#realityofdefenceincanada

[/pers opinion]

Regards
G2G
+300 « Last Edit: November 19, 2019, 16:58:54 by Good2Golf »