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  • TangoSierra
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    Sorca Clarke (Longford-Westmeath, Sinn Fein)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    Given the change in technology outlined by the Minister in the capability of these aeroplanes, is he open to or has he had any discussions on the potential for a co-location site for the Naval Service and Air Corps? The changing capabilities in both areas could provide potential benefits to the State in terms of policing, maritime security, the security of cables, as we have discussed repeatedly in the Chamber, and the importation of contraband, which we all want to see brought to an end. Has the Minister had those conversations with either the Department of Defence or management within the Defence Forces? Is it something he would consider in more detail in the future?

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    Simon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    There is, and there needs to be, a lot of interaction between the Air Corps and the Naval Service because they work together daily on maritime surveillance. When a CASA aircraft is in the air, those on board speak to the Naval Service and there is co-ordination in Haulbowline on fisheries protection observation. I do not know if Deputy Clarke has had a chance to visit the fisheries surveillance centre in the naval base in Haulbowline, but it is pretty impressive. The Air Corps and the Naval Service work in tandem on a daily basis in the context of the work they are doing.

    We also have a plan to ensure the Army Ranger Wing is expanded in the context of the commission report. In the future, it will have training facilities in both the naval base and in Baldonnel. If I get recommendations from the Defence Forces that we should do more in the area of training interoperability or combined sites for training and so on, of course we will look at those. At the moment, the partnership and co-operation between those two arms of the Defence Forces - the Naval Service and the Air Corps - is working well.

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  • TangoSierra
    replied
    Dáil debates

    Thursday, 24 November 2022

    What are Dáil debates?

    Ceisteanna ar Sonraíodh Uain Dóibh - Priority Questions

    Defence Forces


    All Dáil debates on 24 Nov 2022« Previous debateNext debate »

    9:00 am


    John Brady (Wicklow, Sinn Fein)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    1. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the interaction between the Naval Service and the Air Corps in relation to the new CASA aeroplanes due to be delivered to the Irish Defence Forces; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [58338/22]

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    Sorca Clarke (Longford-Westmeath, Sinn Fein)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    Will the Minister outline to the House the interaction between the Naval Service and the Air Corps on the new CASA aeroplanes due to be delivered to the Irish Defence Forces next year?

    Does this answer the above question?
    Yes! 3 people think so!
    No! 3 people think not!

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    Simon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    My priority as Minister for Defence is to ensure that the operational capability of the Defence Forces is maintained to the greatest extent possible so as to enable the Defence Forces to carry out their roles as assigned by the Government. Capability equipment requirements are kept under ongoing review in light of present and expected operational needs.

    The White Paper on Defence 2015 provides for the replacement of the two CASA C-235 maritime patrol aircraft with larger more capable aircraft that would enhance maritime surveillance and provide a greater degree of utility for transport and cargo-carrying tasks. The Department of Defence follows a rigorous systematic process to ensure that military equipment that is procured meets the capability requirements as identified by the Defence Forces. As part of the acquisitions process, a number of working groups were set up to consider, assess and make recommendations on the specific capabilities of the replacement aircraft. A maritime working group was established, made up of members of the Air Corps, the Naval Service and the Sea-Fisheries Protection Agency, SFPA, who were involved in identifying and confirming the high-level requirements that the replacement aircraft should deliver. The maritime group made numerous recommendations, including the required range for various activities, surveillance, communication and navigation equipment and ground support facilities. The recommendations of the maritime working group and other stakeholders were taken into consideration in establishing the final high-level requirements for the aircraft.

    Following a competitive tender competition, a contract was awarded to Airbus Defence and Space in December 2019 for delivery of two CASA C-295 maritime patrol aircraft in 2023 at a cost of some €228 million, inclusive of VAT. Both aircraft are now at an advanced stage of production with the first aircraft making its first flight in September 2022.

    With regard to the operational requirements for maritime patrol aircraft and the requirements of the Naval Service, it is the case that the Naval Service, as the State's principal sea-going agency, is tasked with a variety of defence and other roles. The main day-to-day tasking of the Naval Service is to provide a fishery protection service in accordance with the State's obligations as a member of the European Union. It also carries out a number of other non-fishery related tasks in tandem with maritime surveillance and, as such, any Naval Service patrol should be viewed as a multifaceted activity. In terms of fishery protection, the Naval Service is tasked with patrolling all Irish waters from the shoreline to the outer limits of the exclusive economic zone, EEZ.

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    Catherine Connolly (Galway West, Independent)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    We are over time. The Minister will contribute again.

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    Simon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    These aeroplanes are due next year. We have been through a long and torturous process to make sure they are right.

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    Sorca Clarke (Longford-Westmeath, Sinn Fein)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    The Minister might be aware that the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence recently visited the Air Corps in Baldonnel. I extend my sincere thanks to Brigadier General Rory O'Connor, his staff and Air Corps members for hosting the committee, for the briefings and engagement and for taking the time to speak with us and share their views and ambitions for the future of the Air Corps. It was outlined to us that the new aeroplanes due to be delivered next year will have the capability to see sub-surface to a depth of approximately 20 m, giving the Air Corps the ability to see items and activities of various descriptions in movement or stationary below sea level. As I am sure the Minister will agree, this presents us with significant opportunities. I understand also that there are additional add-ons available to allow for further depth capability to be incorporated later. There is a duality of benefit to these craft from both the perspective of the Air Corps and the Naval Service. However, I am concerned that the current vacancy rates in the Naval Service and the Air Corps may inhibit our ability to maximise the potential use of these craft.

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    Simon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
    Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

    These is a lot more than the aircraft, if Deputy Clarke knows what I mean. Much of the expense is in kitting out the aircraft with the kind of equipment to which the Deputy referred, for example, a very advanced camera system that has the capacity not only to search the sea surface but also under the surface of the sea to a considerable depth. I have been asked repeatedly if it really costs nearly €230 million to provide two new CASAs, but it is not just the hull of the aeroplanes but the equipment, in particular, the camera equipment and other search and rescue equipment on them, that is so expensive. They will considerably improve our capacity from an Air Corps and a maritime surveillance perspective, as well as giving us medium-range capacity to carry cargo. The hull of these aeroplanes is significantly longer and bigger than the current CASAs.

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  • gaff85
    replied
    Our two could go through something like this upgrade, they'd be useful till 2040 https://www.thedefensepost.com/2023/...rade-contract/

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  • Rhodes
    replied
    I mentioned before on here a few years ago that the original plan was for three aircraft to replace the two Casa's but the sheer cost of modern MPA aircraft put an end to that.
    It's nice to hear a third C295W in cargo variant has belatedly been ordered.

    Leave a comment:


  • DeV
    replied
    https://forum.irishmilitaryonline.co...roop-transport

    reportedly we are getting a new transport version too

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  • na grohmiti
    replied
    Chancers.

    Leave a comment:


  • DeV
    replied
    British wanted to base aircraft in Ireland
    https://twitter.com/conorhogarty/sta...7bZiUDEltQ1JYQ

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  • madmark
    replied
    any update on a delivery date?

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  • na grohmiti
    replied
    Easier to buy a completely different aircraft with the kit already fitted.

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  • ias
    replied
    I think the MPA may be configured for ASW/ASuW duties, not sure if this is possible for the MSA variant. I know Chile had their early model MSAs rebuilt to MPA standard (for theirs I think it entailed rewinging).

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  • DeV
    replied
    Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
    What's the difference? I imagine at this stage of pre-delivery testing, yes.
    Permanent versus palletised fit I think

    MAD boom and sonarbouys I think

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  • na grohmiti
    replied
    What's the difference? I imagine at this stage of pre-delivery testing, yes.

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  • ias
    replied
    Would it take long and cost much to have these converted from the MSA variant to the MPA variant?

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  • na grohmiti
    replied
    The spanish temporary markings seem to have come off. Although, the photo was taken in April.
    https://flic.kr/p/2ngWe12
    https://flic.kr/p/2ngXkir

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  • DeV
    replied
    https://twitter.com/mupper41/status/...IeqzixcyUkGBXQ

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