Griffon helicopter courstery shutterstockClick image to enlarge

Bell Textron Canada Limited (BTCL) of Mirabel, Quebec has secured a Government of Canada contract worth close to $800 million to extend the life of the Royal Canadian Air Force's fleet of 85 CH-146 Griffon helicopters until at least the mid-2030s.

As the original manufacturer of the CH-146 Griffon helicopters, BTCL owns the intellectual property rights for the aircraft and is therefore the only company certified to assess and define necessary design changes and associated repairs to the aircraft.

Under the contract, the company will perform modifications on the first 9 helicopters, and will then manage a competitive process to sub-contract suppliers to install modifications on the remaining 76 helicopters.

The first upgraded helicopter is expected to be delivered in 2024 and the remaining will be upgraded by 2028.

In 1992, BTCL was awarded a non-competitive contract to provide National Defence with 100 CH‑146 Griffon helicopters, a military variant of the civilian Bell 412EP helicopter. As of 2022, 85 CH-146 Griffon helicopters remain in service.

The CH‑146 helicopters were delivered between 1994 and 1998, and have since fulfilled multiple mission requirements both at home and abroad, including tactical transport, emergency response, as well as search and rescue.

BTCL is the original equipment manufacturer for the CH-146 helicopters and retains all intellectual property and proprietary information rights to perform ongoing maintenance work, or to sub-contract it as required.

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