PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited ("De Havilland Canada") today announced the establishment of a Memorandum of Understanding ("MOU") to jointly pursue the development of a fully missionized Dash 8-400 aircraft, called the "Dash 8 P-4" for maritime patrol ("MPA"), intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance ("ISR"), as well as other applications. Modified with auxiliary fuel tanks, the Dash 8 P-4 will have superior range, endurance, and time-on-station.
"PAL Aerospace is thrilled to work with De Havilland Canada on this important initiative for our company," said Jake Trainor, CEO of PAL Aerospace. "The considerable cabin space, payload capacity, best-in-class airspeed profile and advantageous operating economics of the Dash 8-400 platform, combined with De Havilland Canada's proud 92-year history of innovation and leadership in aircraft design and manufacturing, provide an ideal foundation from which to launch the Dash 8 P-4 program."
PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada believe there exists a significant global market for missionized turboprop aircraft, especially in the MPA and ISR market. The unique capabilities the Dash 8-400 platform, in combination with PAL Aerospace's demonstrated global capability as a full-service provider of specialized aircraft modification, technology integration and special missions operation, delivers a unique value proposition for clients looking for leading edge MPA and ISR programs. PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada are currently working together to offer a comprehensive Dash 8 P-4 MPA solution for the Royal Malaysian Air Force's ongoing maritime surveillance aircraft procurement.
"PAL Aerospace's unmatched credentials in the design and modification of MPA and ISR aircraft, their understanding of the Dash 8 as a current operator of the platform, and their more than 40 years' experience in special missions operations are unique in Canada and around the world," said David Curtis, Executive Chairman of Longview Aviation Capital, De Havilland Canada's parent company. "We are excited to collaborate on this initiative and believe strongly that the Dash 8 P-4 will prove to be a market leading MPA and ISR solution while supporting highly skilled employment and the development of critical intellectual property here in Canada."
"The Dash 8-400 aircraft's turboprop efficiency and low-impact on the environment combined with its high productivity and jet-like performance have proven to be an ideal combination for many of our airline customers around the world," said Philippe Poutissou, Vice President, Sales and Marketing at De Havilland Canada. "These attributes also make the Dash 8 P-4 a versatile and formidable special mission aircraft."
This new collaboration affirms commitments from both PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada to continue the development of multi-role, MPA and ISR configurations for the Dash 8-400 aircraft. The two companies will continue to cooperate in business development and marketing activities while fortifying long-term support, developing training capacity and combining resources to ensure superior aircraft performance.