Category Archives: Aviation

Il-76 at YHZ

This lyushin-76TD is operated by Russian cargo airline Volga Dnepr. It arrived in Halifax on Friday, and spent the weekend near the gateway terminal, in a spot excellent for viewing. UPDATE: Scheduled to depart on the 15th. There is no word on a departure time.

The design went into operation in the early 70’s, however this example is an upgraded civilian example from 2004. Size wise, this plane is slightly smaller then a C-17.

Air Traffic At YHZ

Having produced a couple of maps of ship traffic tracks in the harbour, I set out to do the same with the ADSB data i have been collecting. the result is Above, and is 5 days of Air traffic (arrivals in red, departures in green).

Shown are 325 flights. EHS, Cougar, and the coast Guard all conducted various training flights which are responsible for some of the weirder tracks visible. Lifeflights tracks to and from the hospitals are the tracks exiting the bottom center of the image.

You can see clear arrival tracks for Runway 23 and Runway 14 – runway 05 and runway 32 are less used.

I also pick up portions of international flights, flying great circle routes to Europe. those are shown in blue on this second map. – the range on these is much greater, as all these flights are happening above 20,000′

Snowbirds Fly Over Sunday?

Image by MS Roxanne Wood 19 Wing Imaging 2017, DND-MDN Canada CX04-2017-0135-061

The Snow Birds have announced a cross Canada tour. From the release:

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds will cross the country to salute Canadians doing their part to fight the spread of COVID-19. This unique mission is being aptly dubbed Operation Inspiration.
The team’s signature nine-jet formation, with trailing white smoke, will fly over cities across the country starting in Nova Scotia this weekend and working west throughout the week. The team will release anticipated locations, routes, and times on their social media platforms each day. Flyovers will occur at an elevation no lower than 500 feet above all obstacles.

Routes will be posted to the Snowbirds facebook page, and will target residential Neighborhoods and Hospitals.

this post will be updated with more details as they become available.

SeaKings to Live on.

Despite having celebrated 50 years of operational service in 2013, and Officially being retired last year. 15 CH-124 Sea Kings will live on, having been sold to Rotor Maxx Support Limited of BC.

Retired SeaKing outside 12 wing Shearwater.

Rotor Max specialized in the support and maintenance of the the Seaking, and its S-61 civilian variant. The 15 Helicopters will be refurbished and leased out to Rotor Max clients to compliment their fleet of eight S-61’s. The acquisition includes a significant inventory of parts, tooling and equipment which will support Rotor max’s business going forward.

the Ex RCAF Seakings were delivered in 1963.

Atlantic Canada Aviation Museum

This past Saturday, I swung by the Atlantic Canada Aviation Museum out by the airport. Despite passing it regularly, I had never actually stopped in.

The museum is worth the stop – its small, but has alot of aircraft, but the exhibits are well done. Admission is by donation (8$ for adults suggested)

Find the Museum at:
20 Sky Blvd, Goffs,
NS, B2T 1K3

Exit 6 off Highway 102
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Red Arrows Flypast

The RAF demo team began a North American tour with a demonstration over the Harbour Today. The Team was the final Act that featured RCAF aircraft in use on the East Coast.

CH-146 Griffon
the Seaking replacement CH-148 Cyclone
The CH-149 Cormorant Sar Helicopter
the C-130 Hercules
CP-140 Aurora
RAF Airbus A400m transport. this would be equivilant to the C177 Globemaster

The red arrows then performed. The RCAF uses the same Hawk jet as its primary jet training aircraft.

Out at YHZ

NASP Dash8-100

I went out to towards the airport to Visit the Atlantic Aviation Museum, and then spent some time Plane Spotting. It was a productive outing.

Flair Airlines 737
Pal Airlines King Air
RAF A400m transport
RAF A400m transport
DFO Beechcraft used for fisheries monitoring.

NATO Exercise Cutlass Fury comes to Halifax in Sept.

NATO exercise Cutlass Fury will be coming to Halifax this September. Ships should begin arriving the first week of September.

At Yesterdays council meeting, the City approved a flypast request for the opening of Cutlass Fury 2019. The exercise will see 22 warships departing the basin Sept 9, and will be overflown by a Cyclone from Shearwater, 4 Hornets from Bagotville, 2 alpha jets from top aces, and a CP140 from greenwood. the Flyover is scheduled for 1300.

The last Cutlass Fury took place in 2016, and was about half the size of this years edition. Canada, the United States, The United Kingdom, Spain, France and Germany took part in that exercise.

Halifax Based Leeway marine will also be providing a “vessel of interest” to the exercise participants.

Cutlass fury runs Sept 9-20, The area of operation will be approximately 50-100 nm southeast of Halifax Harbour.

The case for some contract SAR services

RCAF Cormorant – AKA the EH-101. used for SAR Services in Canada.

Today’s Herald features a piece by Andrea Gunn about the possibility of civilian contractors filling gaps in SAR service. One of those gaps is the short summer season in the arctic.

To date, the government has resisted stationing a helicopter in the arctic during the summer shipping season. They have claimed that this would be removing resources from other areas, and their simply isn’t the need for it in the north.

Cougar S-92 lowering a SAR Tech. Cougar Photo.

Given the relatively short summer season, Helicopter SAR services could be provided on a contract basis. Cougar Helicopters, who fly out of Halifax and St. John’s are able to provide contract all weather rescue services using S-92 Helicopters – the civilian version of the Air Force’s new Cyclone Helicopters. Cougar Helicopters offers this service commercially now, and regularly practices off Halifax.

RCAF Cyclone – the military version of the S-92

Nunatsiaq news reported that the much vaunted deep water Naval Station at Nanivsk, announced under the Harper Government, and has been slow to materialize – Construction started in 2015, and is due to be completed next summer. The port will serve as a re supply base for navy and Coast guard vessels.  It would be a logical place to station Sar Assets.

The case of the grounding of the Akademik Ioffe shows how vitally important it, and SAR helicopter service is to the arctic. Two Helicopters were dispatched from central Canada, but had long flight times, and required fuel stops. Two other cases show how helicopters are needed in the Arctic

On August 29th, 2 men were rescued after their 11m sailboat “Anahita” became trapped in ice and sunk in the Bellot Straight. The Men were found on a ice flow, with warm clothes, food and water, and a life raft. They were rescued by the coast guard icebreaker Henry Larsen’s helicopter, after the closest ship was delayed due to ice.

Two Inuit hunters were also rescued by the Louis St Laurent helicopter after a polar bear attack.  A 2009 senate report identified increasing numbers of pleasure craft in the arctic as a source of significant risk, along with foreign vessels unsuitable for arctic travel transiting Canadian waters.

Given the constrained supply of SAR Resources in existing areas – contract services should be considered.

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