General Dynamics Canada recently won the contract to supply and integrate the new data-management system which is at the heart of the Aurora Incremental Modernization Project.
In addition to the internal weapons bay, modernised Auroras may also be equipped to carry air-to-surface missiles on underwing pylons.
Canadian Forces CP-140 140114 ‘GX-N’ from 415 ‘Swordfish’ Squadron departs RIAT Fairford in July 1999. As part of the celebrations to mark the 75th anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in 1924, the aircraft carries an enlarged squadron badge on the fin, together with the codes the unit applied to its aircraft during World War Two. The squadron was formed at RAF Thorney Island, Hampshire, UK, on August 20, 1941, as the RCAF’s first and only torpedo bomber squadron. The unit was re-established on the Aurora on June 1, 1981, at CFB Greenwood, Nova Scotia.
In view of the changing face of air warfare, the Aurora must have an over-land capability as well as its primary over-water role. With its new equipment - particularly its longer range radar - it will be called upon to perform strategic, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions in support of joint operations.
‘Kill’ markings on the fuselage side of CP-140, 140104, suggest that the aircraft has ‘destroyed’ two submarines during the Fincastle Trophy maritime patrol exercise from RAF Kinloss in 1992.
Auroras rarely wear squadron badges as they are centrally maintained by the Greenwood Base Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Organisation, hence the ‘anonymous’, 140110.
This ‘shark-mouth’ CP-140, 140107, is one of two Auroras to be used as prototypes for the modernisation programme. It is understood that when the testing phase is completed, in around 2010, the aircraft will be cannibalised for spares.
Watch where you are going! Sqn Ldr Peter Williams RAF is an exchange officer serving with 405 Maritime Patrol Sqn, 14 Wing. The Aurora was on a routine maritime patrol in October 2001, and is about to pass a cargo ship loaded with sea containers.
Navigator-communicator (foreground) and tactical navigator of 407 Maritime Patrol Sqn, 19 Wing, during a routine night mission in January 2002 over the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Apollo.