Test An Airbus A220 In The Far Canadian North For No Reason?
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January 16, 2020 - by TCA for fliegerfaust.com
Version en Français : https://www.fliegerfaust.com/a220-yellowknife-video-2644833599.html
Mikey McBryan surprised us this week with a video about an Airbus test in Yellowknife. This test aimed to validate the cold start (…) of an A220 after twelve hours spent at temperatures below -40 ° C. Of course, this video was quickly removed when he received a courteous call (i.e. cease and desist) asking him to immediately remove this video...
One question remains: why (and for whom) was this test done?
Airbus (and previously Bombardier) has been courting potential buyers in Russia for a long time. If these A220s are stored like their military aircraft (outside at all times), it goes without saying that this test is of major importance for obtaining a contract in this country. That said, several components of the A220 are subject to the US ITAR laws.
Taking into account the current geopolitical climate and the relations between Airbus and Boeing, it would not be surprising if the United States blocked the export of these components. Replacing these components is feasible but involves a partial, if not complete, certification process for the device.
Knowing that, did Airbus only do this test for a contract with limited probability? Why then would Mikey McBryan have had a request to remove his video so quickly?
All that does not answer the fundamental question: what really brings Airbus to the Canadian Far North? Is it only for certification purposes? No, the CSeries program had already been certified for Arctic conditions and there is no indication that its certification would have been revoked otherwise.
Several governments are expected to replace their maritime patrol aircraft and refuelers in flight over the next few years. The P-3, KC-135 and A310 of the German, Canadian, Korean, French, Japanese, Norwegian and other governments are among them.
The Canadian government has been planning for years the replacement of CC-150 Polaris aircraft (militarized A310s for passenger and cargo transport as well as in-flight refueling) and CC-140 Aurora (maritime patrol aircraft with modules of environmental monitoring and geological reconnaissance).
Add to this the fact that the Canadian Forces have wanted communications, reconnaissance and flight command (C4ISTAR) for decades and that the federal government is seeking to increase its presence in the Arctic. In this way, the permanent deployment of patrol aircraft in the Arctic achieves all of these goals, without necessarily using combat aircraft whose use and maintenance would entail astronomical costs. It also increases search and rescue capabilities and forecasts of ice movements almost instantly.
Oddly enough, this solution is not as impossible to realize as it seems. The A220 are produced in Canada by Airbus, Airbus offers functional flight refuellers whose equipment could be adapted without too many problems to the A220, SAAB has developed a solution without components subject to ITAR for its maritime patrol aircraft offer.
Now it's up to you to choose: is it pure fiction or reality?
TCA for fliegerfaust.com
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