keeping RCAF Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue (FWSAR) aircraft in service since 2009

In 2009 KF Aerospace was assigned the contract to complete extended life cycle support for the RCAF Fixed-Wing Search and Rescue (FWSAR) fleet of DHC-5 (CC-115) Buffalos and the DHC-6 (CC-138) Twin Otters and their components. This support includes:

  • Manufacturing and modernization
  • Testing and air-worthiness approval
  • Logistics support
  • Non-destructive testing (NDT)
  • Structural repairs
  • Maintenance and obsolescence planning and management

In 2011-2012, KF completed a cockpit modification/upgrade on the RCAF’s fleet of Twin Otters, including installing modern avionics such as new navigation and communications systems on the aircraft. KF engineers and technicians were tasked with performing all phases of the project, including planning and design, installation and all phases of testing and troubleshooting, allowing these RCAF aircraft to get back up in the air and back in service in the Canadian Arctic.

In 2013 KF Aerospace was granted full recognition as a Design Approval Organization (RDAO) by The Department of National Defence’s (DND’s) Technical Airworthiness Authority. KF Aerospace is also a DND Approved Maintenance Organization (AMO) and is ISO 9001-2014 Certified.

Achieving official DND-recognized RDAO/AMO status has streamlined KF Aerospace’s turnaround times on aircraft and components needed to support Canada’s military. These capabilities include:

  • Major modification services (Prototype and Fleet Embodiments)
  • Conducting spot and seam welding on military aircraft and components
  • Holding full DND ERP (DRMIS) implementation and multi-operator qualifications
  • Maintaining full-time Aircraft Maintenance Control and Records offices for maintaining DND Fleet maintenance activities and planning
  • DAO Recognition for Engineered Repairs
  • Obsolescence Management services
  • Embedding company personnel with military offices to assist with aircraft maintenance management activities

Since being assigned the contract, KF Aerospace has embedded personnel for long and short periods in Ottawa, Comox, Resolute Bay and Yellowknife, providing the RCAF with technical management assistance and mobile repair party services.

Twin Otter Rescue in Nunavut

In March 2019, an RCAF CC-138 Twin Otter was damaged after hitting a snowbank while conducting training in Nunavut, in Canada’s far north.

As the contracted maintenance partners for the RCAF’s West Coast FWSAR, KF Aerospace sent a team of experts to dismantle and assist in shipping the aircraft back to KF’s Kelowna facility for repairs. The Twin Otter was soon returned to service.

“This dedication and commitment to success and the professional approach to aviation maintenance excellence did not go unnoticed by our crew. They represent what KF Aerospace strives to deliver, and that is superior aircraft support to all their clients. Please convey my personal gratitude and accolades to your maintenance staff and to your whole team for the support in this recovery.”

– Lieutenant-Colonel Devlon Paquette (440 Squadron Commanding Officer)

Read the full story Operation Recovery from SKIES Magazine.