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Military Logistics

Airbus qualifies as bidder for RCAF tanker replacement programme

1st April 2021 - 14:45 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


The Royal Canadian Air Force is seeking a replacement for its fleet of CC-150 Polaris aircraft. (Photo: RCAF)

A330 MRTT set to go up against KC-46A in Strategic Tanker Transport Capability competition.

Airbus announced on 1 April that it has accepted by the Canadian government as a bidder for the Strategic Tanker Transport Capability (STTC) procurement programme to replace the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Airbus A310 multirole tanker transport (MRTT) fleet.

Rival manufacturer Boeing is also bidding for STTC with its KC-46A Pegasus.

The RCAF operates four A310 MRTT aircraft as the CC-150 Polaris. Two of these aircraft are used purely in the transport role and two operate as tanker/transport platforms.

Airbus stated that the Invitation to Qualify document for STTC, issued in January 2021, identified the A330 MRTT as 'capable of meeting the project’s requirements which now moves to the next stage of the call for tender’.

Airbus expects a draft RfP in Q3 2021. Shephard Defence Insight values the STTC programme at about $1.1 billion if five aircraft are ordered. It adds that the STTC solution will provide air-to-air refuelling for domestic and expeditionary coalition operations, while complementing the strategic airlift capabilities of the CC-177 Globemaster and the CC-144 Challenger fleets (or their eventual replacements).

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