L-3 Gets 4-month, $25M Extension to Canadian CC-130 Contract
DID has covered the extreme age of Canada’s CC-130 fleet, and the special challenges it posed while an emergency replacement competition got underway. L-3 SPAR Aerospace has been Canada’s sole C-130 Hercules Centre of Excellence for more than 44 years, dating back to 1960 when SPAR’s predecessor NWI first started working on Canada’s original B Model Hercs. It has accumulated extensive experience with the aircraft, launching numerous avionics and structural upgrades and even creating international services like Hercules 2020.
Its Canadian maintenance contract will end soon, but L-3 SPAR has negotiated a four-month, C$ 25 million (USD $21.6 million) extension of an ongoing federal government contract whose next five-year C$ 432.4 million (USD $375 million) OWSM Program phase went to Abbotsford, BC’s Cascade Aerospace. The scope of work under the L-3 SPAR extension includes:
- Commitments of a minimum of three aircraft to be inducted at L-3 SPAR for servicing, including one aircraft inducted at the end of November for extensive Hercules Airframe and Wiring System Refurbishment (HAWSR)
- Periodics, mobile repair parties, fly-in repairs and component repairs requiring contractor support
- Continued engineering services from L-3 SPAR’s Edmonton facilities and at Department of National Defence (DND) offices in Ottawa
- Continued technical publication updates including the Interactive Electronic Technical Manuals (IETM) developed by L-3 SPAR and recently launched at DND
The extension goes to April 30, 2006, but Spar will complete any work started during the time of the extension. See corporate release [PDF format]
L-3 SPAR has 600 Edmonton workers. It already services Hercules aircraft for a number of foreign customers from the US Coast Guard to the Royal New Zealand Air Force, but the Canadian contract was by far the biggest.
The new five-year contract to the Cascade consortium, meanwhile, will be a full-service CC-130 Optimized Weapons System Management Program, similar to the one that was recently awarded for Canada’s CP-140 (P-3) Aurora fleet.
The Edmonton Journal reports that Spar and parent company L-3 Communications filed a lawsuit after they lost in September 2005, claiming the federal government unfairly disqualified it from competing for the contract. They also complained that Cascade had no previous experience with the Hercules. Other members of the Cascade consortium, however, included:
- Marshall Aerospace, which bill itself as the world’s most experienced provider of C-130 engineering and maintenance support;
- Derco Aerospace, which bill itself as the world’s leading supplier of C-130 spares and component repair and overhaul; and
- Standard Aero, The Canadian Department of National Defense’s C-130 propulsion maintenance, T-56 engine repair and overhaul, and technical publication services provider.
The Cascade consortium’s Herc Solutions Group will pick up the CC-130 OWSM Program after completion of L-3 SPAR’s contract extension.