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January 16, 2019 | Local, Aerospace

Top Aces Achieves Record-breaking 75,000 Hours of Air Combat Training

MONTREAL, Jan. 16, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ - Top Aces Inc. announced today that it reached an unprecedented 75,000 hours of operational air combat training. The historic milestone was achieved in December during a deployment to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. Top Aces Alpha Jet aircraft supported Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Exercise PUMA STRIKE, providing both Red Air and electronic attack training for Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Cold Lake 410 Fighter Squadron operational training unit and 409 Tactical Fighter Squadron. This exercise featured RCAF units including CF-18s and KC-130s, supported by RCAF Air Weapons Controllers.

Top Aces teams were also recently deployed to Holloman Air Force Base in support of RCAF 433 Tactical Fighter Squadron Exercise TIPIC STRIKE where they flew mutually beneficial training exercises with the USAF 8th, 311th and 314th Fighter Squadron F-16 Replacement Training Units (RTU) and worked with Canadian and American Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (JTAC). Top Aces aircraft participated in combined close air support operations with CF-18, Alpha Jet and MQ-9 Reaper aircraft that included inert weapon deliveries. Top Aces deploys annually to meet its clients' needs wherever they perform their exercises.

"Thanks to the trust of our clients and the dedication of our team, we have just established a world record in the number of hours flown by an adversary air provider," said Paul Bouchard, President and CEO and founder of Top Aces. "Reaching 75,000 hours is unparalleled in our industry worldwide. We are very proud of this milestone and of our industry-leading safety record and airworthiness standards. We are ready to deliver the next generation of highly-representative adversary air to all our customers worldwide."

To meet the needs of its customers, Top Aces intends to introduce the next generation of aggressor training using the supersonic F-16 Fighting Falcon equipped with advanced radar, electronic attack (EA) and on-board systems. Top Aces is committed to the continued delivery of the industry-leading standards of quality and performance demanded by the world's air forces.

About Top Aces

Top Aces provides advanced airborne training to the world's leading air forces. Founded in 2000 by a small group of highly accomplished former fighter pilots, Top Aces has the largest worldwide footprint of privately-held operational fighter aircraft that provide advanced adversary, air-defence and Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) training services around the globe. The mission-critical training offered by Top Aces enhances the operational readiness of combat forces by providing a realistic real-world experience while prolonging fleet life.

The company is changing the face of air combat training with its unparalleled safety record, outstanding team and an industry-leading 75 000 hours of operational training flown in support of its customers worldwide. Top Aces has the experience that matters. For Further Information please visit

SOURCE Top Aces Inc

For further information: Media contact: Rachel Andrews, Director of Marketing,, +1 514-694-5565 ext. 2201, +1 514-451-5131

On the same subject

  • DND says budget for Surface Combatants remains unchanged; PBO report expected in late February

    November 26, 2020 | Local, Naval

    DND says budget for Surface Combatants remains unchanged; PBO report expected in late February

    In 2019, the PBO projected the cost of 15 CSC frigates to be nearly $70-billion. The defence department says the ships are still projected to cost between $56- and $60-billion. By Neil Moss; The Hill Times November 25, 2020 The Department of National Defence says there hasn't been an increase in cost to the largest defence procurement project in Canadian history, which will serve as the backbone of the Canadian Navy for years to come, as questions loom over delays, which could add billions to the price tag. Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) Yves Giroux is expecting to release an updated cost projection for the purchase of 15 Canadian Surface Combatants (CSC) in late February 2021. The 15 warships are replacing Canada's current fleet of Halifax-class frigates. The project is still pegged by DND to cost between $56- and $60-billion. “There have been no budget changes,” a DND spokesperson told The Hill Times. The ships were originally budgeted to cost $26-billion before their price was doubled by DND following a 2017 PBO report that estimated the costs to be $61.82-billion. The most recent projection of the cost of the CSC was done by the PBO in February 2019, which forecast the project could cost nearly $70-billion. The DND calculation does not include taxes that will be paid for construction, which the PBO projection does. The PBO was initially tasked to examine the CSC procurement by the House Committee on Government Operations and Estimates during the last parliamentary session and report back by the end of October, but that timeline was cut short by the prorogation of Parliament on Aug. 18. Now, the committee has passed a motion to have the PBO to report back by Feb. 5, 2021. Mr. Giroux told The Hill Times the PBO's report won't be finished until late February. “Given the complexity in the project themselves—the big procurement projects at DND—its not every day or even every year that the government purchases combat ships, so the comparisons are not very easy to do and there are not that many [countries] in the world where information is readily available [for comparison],” he said, noting the PBO hasn't been having difficulties with DND. The office recently criticized the department of finance for a lack of transparency. “Even if we get perfect information and totally complete and transparent information from DND, that is only one part of the ledger. It doesn't tell us whether the predicted cost compared favourably or not with other procurement projects by other navies in the world,” he said, adding difficulty arises when trying to compare different ships, with different capabilities, being built by different shipyards, and under different timelines. In response to the PBO's recent cost projection of Canada's Joint Support Ship procurement, DND said the comparisons that were being used didn't have the same capabilities. “It's not always easy to compare capabilities that vary greatly from one country to the other and that's one criticism we sometimes get when we're trying to cost defence projects, [that] we did not take into account sufficiently the fact that the Canadian capabilities are so much better than the competitors,” he said. Another issue when performing a cost analysis, Mr. Giroux said, is that navies procure varying numbers of ships and the cost per individual ship decreases with the more ships that are built. Mr. Giroux said the cost analysis is in the “early stages” and wouldn't comment on its early findings. He said the extended timeline is a result of the amount of work and the competing work that the PBO has been tasked with, such as costing COVID-19 supports. The DND spokesperson said costs for “personnel, operations, and maintenance” that will be needed throughout the life of the ships will be “greatly influenced” by the ship design and “only available later in the process.” In 2019, the Canadian government selected the BAE Type 26 as the frigate design for the CSC. Lockheed Martin is partnering with BAE Systems. The ships will be constructed at Irving Shipbuilding's Halifax shipyard. Irving and Lockheed Martin are currently “focused on integrating” the necessary elements from the Type 26 with the Canadian Navy's systems requirements for the CSCs, according to DND. The PBO will be comparing the cost of the Type 26 to the Type 31e, the FREMM, and other “competing” ships. Canadian Global Affairs Institute vice-president David Perry, an expert on defence procurement, recently wrote in The Hill Times that there are “rumblings” of delays to the CSC procurement and changes to the ship that could drive up the cost of the project. The CSC procurement has been going through a requirements reconciliation phase of the design process, which the spokesperson says has been “substantially completed,” adding that the preliminary design work has begun. “Significant progress has been made over the last 18 months to advance the selected design to meet the RCN's unique operational requirements. This progress has provided us with greater clarity about the complexity of the ship design and its associated combat systems, as well as better insight into the required time to complete the necessary design work before the start of construction,” the spokesperson said, but did not address if there are any delays. The PBO's 2019 reported indicated that a delay of one year would add $2.2-billion to the cost of the ships and a two-year delay would mean an added $4.5-billion. “There is no evidence suggesting that the pace of the project has improved as the work became more difficult—and that is without trying to account for any COVID-related impacts,” Mr. Perry wrote. During the first wave of the pandemic, Irving Shipbuilding reduced staff at their shipyard to about half. After the design phase of the ships is completed, Irving Shipbuilding will be awarded an implementation contract to build the ships. “The schedule to build and commission the ships will be better understood as design work progresses,” the DND spokesperson said. Mr. Giroux said he was surprised by how precise the information being provided to the PBO is. “I would expect some of the information to be secret for defence reasons [and] national security reasons, and very often they are,” he said. “We're provided with a level of information that is surprisingly detailed in my opinion.” “In terms of transparency from DND, it's a pleasant surprise so far,” he said, adding he also has been surprised with how Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan (Vancouver South, B.C.) and his officials have been transparent with the PBO. The Hill Times Other major defence procurement projects Arctic Offshore Patrol Ship (AOPS) Purpose: The AOPS will provide armed surveillance of Canadian waters, which includes the North, and help enforce Canada's sovereignty with its defence partners. First announced: in 2015 by the Harper government. Cost: $4.3-billion Timeline: First ship was delivered in July 2020 with the sixth and final ship planned for a 2024 delivery. Victoria-class modernization Purpose: To extend the life of Canada's four Victoria-class submarines so they have the capability to operate until the mid- to late-2030s. First announced: in 2017 by the Trudeau government. Cost: Unknown Timeline: Currently in the options-analysis phase. More information on the timeline and costs are expected when the current procurement phase is complete. Joint Support Ships Purpose: The two Joint Support Ships are replacing auxiliary oiler replenishment vessels that were decommissioned in 2016. First announced: in 2004 by the Martin government. Cost: $4.1-billion Timeline: First ship is expected to be delivered by 2024 and the second one is planned to be completed in 2025. Fighter Jet Replacement Purpose: Eighty-eight fighter jets to replace Canada's fleet of CF-18s that serve as the pillar of the Canadian Air Force. First announced: in 2010 by the Harper government. Cost: $15- to $19-billion Timeline: Proposals from three aerospace companies are currently being assessed—Saab's Gripen, Lockheed Martin's F-35, and Boeing's Super Hornet. A contract award is anticipated for 2022 with the first aircraft being delivered “as early as” 2025. The new fleet is planned to operate beyond 2060. Canadian Multi-Mission Aircraft Purpose: To replace the CP-140 Aurora fleet to have a “enhanced long-ranged, long-endurance, multi-mission capability.” First announced: in 2018 by the Trudeau government. Cost: Unknown Timeline: Has yet to begin the option analysis phase.


    September 17, 2020 | Local, Aerospace


    Icarus Aerospace is pleased to announce our collaboration with CAE Defence & Security to provide our customers with cost-effective submarine detection and tracking capability. By offering CAE's MAD-XR in a towed configuration we will remove all sources of aircraft interference and provide a superior magnetic anomaly detection solution. WASP-M ensures that crew can operate the aircraft in the most demanding scenarios with minimal workload and for prolonged periods of time without excessive fatigue. We bring technology and capability which greatly enhances safety, mission efficiency and ensures success while enabling reduction of crew members on board the aircraft.

  • CAE awarded contract by GA-ASI to develop synthetic training system

    January 28, 2019 | Local, Aerospace

    CAE awarded contract by GA-ASI to develop synthetic training system

    CAE announced on Jan. 24 that the company has been awarded a contract from General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) to develop a comprehensive synthetic training system for the United Kingdom's Protector RG Mk1 remotely piloted aircraft system (RPAS) program. The Protector will be operated by the Royal Air Force and is the U.K.-specific variant of GA-ASI's certifiable MQ-9B SkyGuardian RPAS, which can meet the most stringent certification requirements of aviation authorities. Under terms of the contract, CAE will design and develop a comprehensive synthetic training system that will include desktop and high-fidelity mission trainers specific to the Protector RPAS. The high-fidelity Protector mission trainers will be based on GA-ASI's certifiable ground control station (CGCS) and will be the first simulators developed for this advanced CGCS. CAE will also provide brief/debrief and scenario generation stations as part of the overall synthetic training system. “We are pleased to continue our global training partnership with GA-ASI to support the U.K. Protector program,” said Gene Colabatistto, CAE's group president, defence and security. “Protector will offer a new level of capability in an unmanned air system and will require well-trained aircrews. We will leverage developments we have made over the past several years creating the highest fidelity training devices for the Predator family of remotely piloted aircraft to produce a world-class synthetic training system for the Protector program.” Initial deliveries of the synthetic training system will be targeted for delivery in 2020 to RAF Waddington, the hub of U.K. Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) that will be the main operating base for the Protector. “MQ-9B SkyGuardian, which Protector is based on, represents the next-generation of remotely piloted aircraft capabilities, including longer endurance and automatic take-off and landing,” said David R. Alexander, president, aircraft systems, GA-ASI. “The Protector synthetic training system will play a key role helping the Royal Air Force develop skilled aircrews, and we are pleased to collaborate with CAE as our training partner on this critical program.”

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