The Canadian government has awarded a contract for design work on a life extension programme for the country’s fleet of 85 Bell 412CF (CH-146 in national service) Griffon helicopters. The CH-146 Griffon is forecast to be retired in 2021, but the new contact includes options to extend the contract up to 2025 if necessary. The Bell CH-146 Griffon is a multi-role utility helicopter of the Huey family, designed by Bell Helicopter Textron as a variant for the Canadian Armed Forces of the Bell 412EP/412CF.
Under a CAD90 million (USD68 million) contract, Bell Helicopter Textron Canada Limited, will design a life extension programme to ensure that the aircraft remain in service until at least 2031. The definition work will be carried out under the existing Griffon support contract, originally awarded in 2011, but the future total of the Griffon Limited Life Extension project is estimated to be valued at approximately CAD800 million.
The Griffon, Canada’s multi-purpose utility helicopter, is essential to CAF operations both at home and abroad. The helicopter fills a number of functions, including tactical troop transport, reconnaissance, escort and surveillance, casualty evacuation, disaster relief, special operations aviation support, and search and rescue. Upgrading the CH-146 will ensure that it continues to make important contributions to the success of the full range of the CAF’s missions and operations.