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NRC’s Convair 580 Airplane Upgrades

Solicitation number 18-22106

Publication date

Closing date and time 2019/02/14 13:00 EST


    An ACAN is a public notice indicating to the supplier community that a department or agency intends to award a contract for goods, services or construction to a pre-identified supplier, thereby allowing other suppliers to signal their interest in bidding, by submitting a statement of capabilities. If no supplier submits a statement of capabilities that meets the requirements set out in the ACAN, on or before the closing date stated in the ACAN, the contracting officer may then proceed with the award to the pre-identified supplier.


    The NRC maintains a fleet of highly specialized and customizable research aircrafts to assist industry with the testing and demonstrations of aeronautical technologies in the areas of airborne research, flight mechanics and avionics.

    The Convair 580 (Twin-Engine Aircraft) is one aircraft in NRC’s fleet. The NRC’s Convair is used for long distance operations and carries several racks of scientific equipment and instrumentation. The Aircraft is a multi-purpose flying laboratory supporting projects in atmospheric studies (low-level smog in urban areas, cloud physics, cloud chemistry, aircraft icing), gradient aeromagnetic, advanced navigation, spotlight synthetic aperture radar and precision aircraft positioning using differential global positioning system (DGPS) techniques. The aircraft also features a suite of standard research support capabilities that include high-speed data acquisition systems, multi-camera video recording systems, free-stream chemistry sampling inlets, multiple navigation sensors, high bandwidth data-link communications, electro-optic and infrared sensors, wing-mounted pylons, and wingtip-mounted pods.

    The National Research Council wishes to award a non-competitive contract to KF Aerospace to perform the following tasks on NRC’s Convair 580 Aircraft.

    • CV580 Autopilot system upgrade: The existing autopilot system (SP-20) should be replaced by a Collins AP-103/FD-108 autopilot system. New AP-103/FD-108 autopilot system should be able to automatically manoeuvre the aircraft during all flight phases including the approach. It should operate functionally in four modes: gyro mode, heading mode, NAV mode, and approach mode.
    • CV580 Audio System Upgrade: The existing audio system should be replaced by a Cobham audio system. It should provide three audio controls in the cockpit, two audio controls in the engineering stations, and six audio controls in the crew stations. The audio isolation should be designed to support four intercom loops. The research projects always have various requests on the audio system usage. It is essential to have a flexible control on the audio communications and isolations among the flight crew and the air traffic control, the cockpit and the cabin, the flight crew and the researchers, the researchers and the ground stations.
    • CV580 ADS-B Out System upgrade: The existing dual Collins TDR-94D transponder system should be upgraded to meet ADS-B Out regulation requirements. The ADS-B out system also should be compatible with the aircraft existing TCAS II system. ADS-B Out system design in the transport category airplane like Convair 580 is a challenge. It should be designed to ensure the installation will not affect the normal operations on the TCAS II, ADC systems.

    Minimum Essential Requirement:

    Suppliers who consider themselves fully qualified and available to provide the goods and services described in the ACAN may submit a statement of capabilities in writing to the contact person identified in this notice on or before the closing date of this notice. The statement of capabilities must clearly demonstrate how the supplier will meet the advertised requirements and address the minimum essential requirements listed below:

    • Familiar with AP-103/FD-108 autopilot installation in the Convair 580 aircraft
    • Experience in the audio system design and installation for the special mission operations
    • Experience in certifying ADS-B Out system in FAR 25 (transport category) aircraft
    • Structure engineers and electrical engineers must have minimum of 10 years’ experience related to the tasks in question.


    • Must supply a TCCA DAO (Design Approval Organization) certificate
    • Must supply a Transport Canada AMO (Aircraft Maintenance Organization) certificate
    • Must supply a Convair 580 Type Certificate.

    For Logistical consideration, the Aircraft will be grounded and unflyable from August 2019 for approximately 2 months for other heavy maintenance. Potential interest suppliers would be responsible for transportation to and from KF Aerospace to their facility.

    Sole source justification:

    KF Aero was chosen for this requirement as for their significant experience and knowledge to manage this unique requirement. The Autopilot system is extremely complex and requires significant modifications to both the system and aircraft to integrate. As the 580 Type Certificate holder, KF Aero has the ability to develop significant aircraft modifications on the Convair aircraft. Kelowna Flight craft has been maintaining, modifying, and operating the Convair CV580 aircraft for over 30 years. KF has engineering and technical expertise for all aspects of the aircraft.

    Government Contracts Regulations Exception(s):
    The following exception(s) to the Government Contracts Regulations is (are) invoked for this procurement under subsection 6(d) - "only one person is capable of performing the work” Only organization with both the experience and the certificates to complete the tasks in question.

    Ownership of Intellectual Property:

    There are no Intellectual Property considerations with this procurement. Ownership of the IP in question will remain with the contractor. The crown will have <<rights of use>> of any parts and services.

    Period of the proposed contract or delivery date:

    The NRC will consider entering into a Contractual Agreement with the proposed supplier KF Aero. The proposed contract will be 5-7 months with a target of completing the upgrades in the August 2019. The contract will be subject to negotiation with the supplier and maybe adapted to meet the business needs of the NRC. NRC reserves the right to extend this contract for additional similar work.

    The optional periods will be from July 2019 until June 30 2020 and July 2020 to June 30 2021.

    Estimated Value: $900K up to $2 Million including options.

    Name and address of the pre-identified supplier:
    KF Aero - 5655 Airport Way
    Kelowna BC, V1V 1S1

    Inquiries and statements of capabilities are to be directed to:
    Contracting Authority: Johnathon Gillis
    Telephone: (613) 993-5506

    Contract duration

    Refer to the description above for full details.

    Trade agreements

    • World Trade Organization Agreement on Government Procurement (WTO GPA)

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    Contact information

    Contracting organization

    National Research Council Canada
    100 Sussex Dr
    Ottawa, Ontario, K1A0R6
    Contracting authority
    Gillis, Johnathon
    1200 Montreal Road, M58
    Ottawa, ON, K1A 0R6

    Buying organization(s)

    National Research Council Canada
    100 Sussex Dr
    Ottawa, Ontario, K1A0R6
    Bidding details

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    Summary information

    Notice type
    Advance Contract Award Notice
    English, French
    Region(s) of delivery
    National Capital Region (NCR)
    Region of opportunity
    National Capital Region (NCR)
    Procurement method
    Competitive - Limited Tendering

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