Air Defence Systems program


With the acquisition of new and modernized equipment by the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), maintaining existing and future RCAF fleets comes with a heavy financial and environmental burden. The Air Defence Systems (ADS) program aims to reduce the cost of RCAF operations while simultaneously minimizing their environmental footprint.

The ADS program offers access to technology development, demonstration and airworthiness certification facilities and expertise that will help to reduce fuel burn, CO2 emissions and the life-cycle costs of ongoing RCAF operations. The program will also transfer a selection of its program-developed technologies to market as a way to provide the civilian aerospace industry with cutting-edge tools and modern methodologies.

Collaborate with us

Collaborate with us on strategic research projects to help de-risk your innovative ideas, reduce your start-up costs and accelerate your commercial development timelines.

Collaboration opportunities

NRC is actively seeking partners and collaborators in the military and civil aerospace industry to help transfer the ADS technologies. Our current research priorities are: transferring the ADS technologies important to the Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) or Sustainment sector; and developing and testing alternative fuels that can be utilized by the military, airlines and the general aviation industry.

Potential ADS partners include:

  • Other government departments (OGDs), who will provide strategic air vehicle research and engineering support;
  • Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) for the military sector, including MROservice providers, who will further collaborate in strategic sustainment R&D and technical services;
  • Sustainment industry for the military sector, who will help increase the Canadian aerospace industry's competitiveness and enable partner companies to sustain advanced aircraft systems including Integrated Vehicle Health Management (IVHM); and
  • Canadian aerospace SMEs, who will engage with NRC for technology developments, demonstrations within consortia and the transition to the civilian sector of state-of-the-art technologies developed for the military.

Working with ADS partners, NRC aims to:

  • reduce fuel burn by 20% by 2019-2020
  • reduce CO2 emissions by 20% by 2019-2020
  • reduce the costs of RCAF operations by 10% by 2016 and 20% by 2019 (based on 2009 figures).
Collaborator benefits

NRC collaborators will play a significant role in increasing Canada's economic impact by working to reduce life cycle costs; researching environmental impacts and emerging technologies; exploring safe and effective airborne assets; and providing integrated aircraft engine health management.

In addition, ADS partners realize the following benefits:

  • Access to a world-class research infrastructure and unique expertise in structures, materials, manufacturing, aerodynamics, gas turbines and flight research combined with competitive rates, customized service options and high ethical standards;
  • Technology validation and airworthiness certification facilities;
  • Access to the expertise required to bring technologies to market;
  • Maximal opportunities and connections between Canadian companies at all levels of the supply chain, including upper tier suppliers and OEMs;
  • Access to new and emerging technologies and processes that enable enhanced competitive market position, both in the manufacturing and sustainment segments; and
  • A foot in the door for opportunities related to the recapitalization and sustainment of the Canadian government's aircraft fleets.
Technical and advisory services

NRC has a full suite of competencies and resources that make us a one-stop shop for today's technologically advanced, time-sensitive air defence market. Our proven track record of successful research and technology development, as well as our finely honed expertise and multi-disciplinary array of technical capabilities, make us ideally positioned to bridge a critical innovation gap in the air defence industry. NRC's technical advisory services include:

  • Aero-acoustics and structural dynamics
  • Airworthiness certification
  • Alternative Fuels Research
  • Avionics
  • Flight vehicle aerodynamics
  • Gas turbine engine certification
  • Gas turbine engine research
  • Lifecycle assessment
  • Materials and structures
  • Modeling and simulation
  • Sensors

We offer a number of research and technical services that include fee-for-service testing, certification and consultation.

Research facilities

Partners and clients have access to our world-class facilities, which contribute to the development and demonstration of technologies that will reduce fuel burn, CO2 emissions and the costs of air defence operations. Our Ottawa facilities include:

Contact us

To discuss your project or find out more about how we can support your business, contact:

Dean Flanagan, Client Relationship Leader
Telephone: 613-990-8319

Targeted industries

Aerospace and Defence, Manufacturing and Sustainment