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FORCE 2025: Informing the Army’s future structure

Weinie

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Kirkhill, I seriously doubt we’ll do much about NWS station security…especially if the PIN-3 mystery fire at Lady Franklin Point is any indicator.

Just an unforeseen fire, folks. Nothing to see here.
View attachment 66759
Maybe we gather or clone some of the loners/adventure addicts on here, and then post them to each of these stations to do fire watch. Resupply by air three times a year. Give them a surplus .303 and the excess ammo left from the Rangers to fight off polar bears and the odd wayward Russki.

It works on "Life Below Zero."

I love it when a solution comes together. :p
 

Kirkhill

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The DC-3 and King Air seem to be the fleet of choice there:

What's Hidden in the Hangar? Buffalo Airways Tour​


I made this Buffalo Airways Hangar tour video for "EAA Spirit of Aviation Week" it was streamed for the Event on July 23rd, 2020 :)


Lemmesee. DC-3, C-47, Dakota

Government surplus. Standardized production. Simple. Hard to break....
 

Weinie

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Lemmesee. DC-3, C-47, Dakota

Government surplus. Standardized production. Simple. Hard to break....
Probably the perfect planes for Canada's North as it currently exists. But apparently, they are getting more rare and expensive(as parts supply wanes and fewer suppliers will build parts for them). They are, after all, a 70 year old design
 

Kirkhill

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Probably the perfect planes for Canada's North as it currently exists. But apparently, they are getting more rare and expensive(as parts supply wanes and fewer suppliers will build parts for them).


Could a Viking Buffalo II fill some of the gaps? Also not pressurized.
 

Weinie

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Could a Viking Buffalo II fill some of the gaps? Also not pressurized.
It seems like it would have less than half the range of the above aircraft under full load, which means that we would have to adopt a new northern policy, procure the aircraft, and then establish multiple FOB's for them to operate out of.

And now we are back full circle, from ideal to practical.
 

Kirkhill

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The DC-3 has a cruising speed of 207 mph (333 km/h), a capacity of 21 to 32 passengers or 6,000 lbs (2,700 kg) of cargo, and a range of 1,500 mi (2,400 km), and can operate from short runways. The DC-3 had many exceptional qualities compared to previous aircraft.


The Buffalo is a utility transport aircraft that can take off and land on the most rugged strips as short as a soccer field. It serves a vast territory from the British Columbia / Washington border to the Arctic and from the Rocky Mountains to 1,200 kilometres out over the Pacific Ocean.


Length24 m
Wingspan29.25 m
Height8.53 m
Empty weight12,474 kg
Maximum gross weight19,560 kg
Maximum speed420 km/h
Range2,240 km
LocationsComox, B.C.
This aircraft is used forSearch and rescue

We have multiple FOBs. They're called villages or native communities. All of them have some sort of landing strip. And each of the NW Radar sites has a landing strip.

As to the range issue - I could be wrong but I believe that the 1200 km reference, assuming that is what you are talking about, is due to the fact that when operating over water the aircraft must return to land to fill up. It can only use half its gas outbound. If the Buffalo is hopping from one field or strip with fuel to another, then its range is the same as the DC3 - 2240 km vs 2400 km.

DHC-5 Range (runway ops)2,038 miles (3279 km) with zero payload, 691 miles (1112 km) with 18,000 lb payload.

Capacity: Two crew and up to 41 troops

I don't know. It looks like a practical alternative to me. If I remember correctly it was in competition with the early Chinooks as a tactical lifter.

The DHC-5 has a maximum payload capacity of 6.3 t and the cabin has been designed to carry a single Pershing missile, a M151 truck (Edit = a jeep), a 105mm howitzer or 41 combat troops.

 

MilEME09

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perhaps our arctic issue would be a good testing ground for solar powered aircraft? or some type of hybrid aircraft? we can't keep fuel in all these small towns and villages, especially ones only accessible by air or ice roads. In order to make it work we would need some kind of fuel pipe line, but that is not practical. Maybe air isn't the best idea, maybe we need to go the sea route? heavy ice breakers making patrols through our northern waters.
 

Weinie

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We have multiple FOBs. They're called villages or native communities. All of them have some sort of landing strip. And each of the NW Radar sites has a landing strip.

As to the range issue - I could be wrong but I believe that the 1200 km reference, assuming that is what you are talking about, is due to the fact that when operating over water the aircraft must return to land to fill up. It can only use half its gas outbound. If the Buffalo is hopping from one field or strip with fuel to another, then its range is the same as the DC3 - 2240 km vs 2400 km.

DHC-5 Range (runway ops)2,038 miles (3279 km) with zero payload, 691 miles (1112 km) with 18,000 lb payload.



I don't know. It looks like a practical alternative to me. If I remember correctly it was in competition with the early Chinooks as a tactical lifter.



Had it been a practical alternative, the Canadian government would have leaped on it as a "Buy Canadian" first and only response. It would have "created jobs, spent Canadian money here, supported Canadian industry, and would have been lauded into Hansard as the gov't spending taxpayers money wisely and where it belongs."

It also may have bought votes in B.C.

Just sayin.
 

daftandbarmy

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Could a Viking Buffalo II fill some of the gaps? Also not pressurized.

Air North just retired their Hawker Sidley's. I flew on those for a bit and they're awesome.

And as we're in the habit of buying used aircraft etc....

 

GR66

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That sounds like every White Paper I've seen since the 1980s.
And is it the Government or the Army that stands in the way of it being implemented?

We've already looked at the Swedish model to show how we could re-organize our "Heavy" brigade and create a Medium Cavalry/Recce-Strike Brigade while at the same time freeing up both LAVs and infantry PYs.

We already have 3 x Parachute Companies as part of our existing Light Brigade structure...so there's the core of the Airborne Battle Group and we have 17 x CC-130J's to transport them.

The Light Battalions (with freed up PYs from the Mech units to make up for the Airborne Battalion) can be grouped together in a single Brigade as almost everyone on this forum has already suggested.

So what are we missing?

Using the Swedish model for the Heavy Brigade we've freed up LAVs along with some Leopards so both can be used for Reserve Training Companies for 1 Brigade. That covers the Heavy Brigade Reserve augmentation requirement.

We already have programs in place for our AD and AT requirements but freeing up LAVs actually makes this easier. GDLS is already installing the Moog RiWP RWS on Stryker vehicles and this can meet our needs. Quad (2 x dual) Stinger launchers for our maneuver unit VSHORAD requirement. Quad (2 x dual) Hellfire launchers for our AT requirement. Quad (2 x dual) Coyote UAV launchers for our Recce/Strike requirement. We've actually made this procurement easier as we no longer have to provide new vehicles but rather just replace the turrets with the RWS. The Ground Based Air Defence Project should also cover the balance of the AD requirement to protect a FOB.

The LUV replacement program is already in place to replace both the G-Wagon and "Milverados". This will fulfill the need for a light, air-transportable Section carrier for our Light Brigade. We could actually make this procurement easier as well by adopting the same Chevy Colorado-based Infantry Squad Vehicle being purchased by the US Army for it's Light Infantry units. Commonality with the US would be very helpful in joint operations from a logistical point of view. Extra bonus points if part of the purchase agreement is that our ISVs are to be made at the GM Oshawa plant. Makes it a much easier sell to the Government.

Vehicles for the Arctic Response Companies? The Domestic Arctic Mobility Enhancement project is already in place to replace our Bv206's by 2029/2030.

We'd still want a new mortar system for the infantry Battalions. In the short term we could continue to use dismounted 81mm mortars, but the US Army already has a program in place to replace their M1129 Stryker Mortar Carrier Vehicles with a new turreted 120mm mortar. We should piggyback off that program and get the same system for our LAV Battalions. We'll already have LAV hulls to mount them on. For the Light Battalions, the Elbit Spear II 120mm mortar is a soft-recoil system that can be mounted on light 4x4 wheeled vehicles...like the ISV.

Same deal for the M777 replacement for the Heavy Brigade. Piggyback off the US Army's program to purchase a wheeled 155mm howitzer system for their Stryker Brigades.

All the basics are already in place for the Army to implement these suggestions with most of the equipment requirements already either covered under existing procurement projects, or capable of being piggybacked of US Army projects.

It looks like to me that it's the Army leadership that is the roadblock...not the Government.
 

lenaitch

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We have multiple FOBs. They're called villages or native communities. All of them have some sort of landing strip. And each of the NW Radar sites has a landing strip.

According to Wiki and Google earth, some are helipad only and some with strips are listed as abandoned (which, admittedly, could be rehabilitated).
perhaps our arctic issue would be a good testing ground for solar powered aircraft? or some type of hybrid aircraft? we can't keep fuel in all these small towns and villages, especially ones only accessible by air or ice roads. In order to make it work we would need some kind of fuel pipe line, but that is not practical. Maybe air isn't the best idea, maybe we need to go the sea route? heavy ice breakers making patrols through our northern waters.
Agree a decent testing opportunity for industry, but not sure military logistical planning is a good basket to place experimental eggs. Current activity in electric aircraft (don't know about hybrid) is pretty much limited to light, range-challenged aircraft. Solar is great provided there is sun and I imagine temperature degradation on batteries would be an issue.
 

MilEME09

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According to Wiki and Google earth, some are helipad only and some with strips are listed as abandoned (which, admittedly, could be rehabilitated).

Agree a decent testing opportunity for industry, but not sure military logistical planning is a good basket to place experimental eggs. Current activity in electric aircraft (don't know about hybrid) is pretty much limited to light, range-challenged aircraft. Solar is great provided there is sun and I imagine temperature degradation on batteries would be an issue.
Perhaps a two stage approach? Unmanned long endurance drones for monitoring, manned aircraft ready to go to respond.
 

daftandbarmy

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According to Wiki and Google earth, some are helipad only and some with strips are listed as abandoned (which, admittedly, could be rehabilitated).

Agree a decent testing opportunity for industry, but not sure military logistical planning is a good basket to place experimental eggs. Current activity in electric aircraft (don't know about hybrid) is pretty much limited to light, range-challenged aircraft. Solar is great provided there is sun and I imagine temperature degradation on batteries would be an issue.

The elctricity for most remote northern communities is provided by diesel generators, and for 6 months of the year there is no sun, so....
 

Kirkhill

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1987 White Paper Force - Primary Legacy - The North Warning System of 47 Remote, Unattended, Radar Sites.

Proposed Territorial Defence Force - Total Force

4,000 Rangers
90,000 Militia
400 Bv206
200 Bison


Rangers to continue their mission of patrolling their hunting grounds and reporting their observations


Militia to establish a force of Security Guards, "minimally trained", to secure military Vital Points.
(Dew Line, further south, was covered by both Ranger and commercial activity. The had "eyes on". The North Warning System was not only unmanned but unobserved. Presumably the VP guards were not, as we feared at the time, to guard local post offices in the south, but the NWS sites in the north.)

The Vital Point guard force would be based on small groups (I assume platoon sized) organized into Task Forces and Brigaded for administrative purposes.

The VP force would be 100% Militia and would be raised from the 90,000 people on strength when the force was required up north. It wasn't a permanent placement. It was a permanent commitment.



The Rangers and the VP force would be backed up by a 10/90 Light Brigade. 10% Regular Force and 90% Militia.
3 Light Battalions, 1 Cougar AVGP Squadron and 1 Artillery Regiment (presumably C1 105s)



The next level of domestic support started to include a greater Reg Force commitment. It was based on one of the 3 existing Reg Brigade Groups. It was a 50/50 Medium Brigade. 50% Regs and 50% Militia. It was to be equipped with AVGP Cougars and Grizzlies, and presumably Bisons, as well as M113s and either M109s or 105s or perhaps a combination. Remember: "No tanks in the streets!" 3 Battalions, 1 Cougar AVGP Squadron and 1 Artillery Regiment.



The centre-piece of the Territorial Defence Force was the Canadian Airborne Regiment. A parachuted deployable 90/10 immediate reaction Airborne Battle Group that could be dropped anywhere in Canada with the existing fleet of Hercs and supported with the helicopter force of Kiowa, Iroquois and Chinook.

The CAR had a peace-time establishment of 730, all ranks organized into 3 Commandos of 154 commanded by a Major.
The Commandos each had 4 "rifle" platoons of three sections, and a separate "weapons" platoon of 3 TOW launchers, 2 HMGs and a mortar group of 4 81mm mortars. The weapons platoon was mounted and supplied with jeeps. They could be brigaded to create as support company if the entire regiment was deployed as a unit.

Command and Control was exercised by the HQ and Sigs Squadron of 132, including the CAR's recce platoon.

Combat Service Support was supplied by the CAR's own Airborne Service Commando of 134 which provided "first line medical, maintenance, transport and supply" support.

When the CAR was plus-upped to the parachutable Airborne Battle Group of 925 it added 6 L5 105mm howitzers and a VSHORAD GBAD section with 5 Blowpipes. These additions were supplied by E Battery 2 RCHA. 2 CER supplied 64 Engineers. The final addition was a Medical group of 17 capable of emergency surgery in the field as well as ambulance services.

The "hidden" costs and capabilities of the CAR included the Canadian Forces Parachute Maintenance Depot which packed, maintained and supplied all the 'chutes, and the Canadian Airborne Centre. The Airborne Centre provided training in static and high altitude parachuting, but also in dropping kit. It also trialled kit and techniques.


So, the Territorial Defence Force from the top,

925 Regs committed to an Immediate Reaction Unit in the form of the 90/10 Airborne Battle Group.

A 50/50 Medium Brigade Gp

A 10/90 Light Brigade Gp

A 0/100 Vital Point security force

90,000 Militia under 131 local commanders

The Canadian Rangers.

Supported by Hercs, Chinooks, Iroquois and Kiowa.



This left the following Expeditionary Force under the newly recreated 1st Canadian Division. A Division (-). Being only a 2 Brigade Division, previously seen in WW2 Armoured Divisions.

One Brigade, 4 CMBG, was a 75/25 Brigade Group, light on infantry, with only two battalions mounted in M113s, one Leo and M113 equipped Armoured Regiment, and large Artillery Regiment with 24 M109s, an ADATs VSHORAD Battery mounted on M113s. The Division also had 1 or 2 Batteries of towed/emplaced radar guided 35mm anti-aircraft guns under the Oerlikon SkyShield system.

As noted the Brigade was not fully manned. It required 25% of its strength, Militia, to be flown over from Canada. Likely this would happen the same day that the Territorial Defence Force was fully manned and the Vital Point guards deployed. It would also happen the same day that the Division started to receive the Canadian Air Sea Transportable Brigade Group which had orginally been tasked to Norway but was reassigned to Germany to re-create the 1st Canadian Division.

The CAST Brigade was to be a 90/10 Medium Brigade based in Canada, equipped with the M113s, Leos, M109s and AVGPs in Canada but to fall in on M113s, Leos and M109s prepositioned in Germany. This was a three battalion Brigade

The final element of the Expeditionary Force was an independent light infantry battalion based in Canada that would be flown over to join NATO's multi-national Allied Command Europe (ACE) Mobile Force (Land) - North. AMF(L)-North. This also was a 90/10 Regular unit. In Europe it was expected to continue operating in Scandinavia with Bv206 tracks.

So the expeditionary force

1 Canada Based 90/10 Immediate Reaction Light Infantry Unit (AMF(L))

1 Mechanized Division (-)
1 Pre-Positioned 75/25 Mechanized Brigade Gp (-)
1 Canada Based 90/10 Air deployable Mechanized Brigade (with prepositioned gear)
GBAD and SPH Artillery.

What this meant was that the AMF(L) Bn and the CAST Bde were both available at priority call for the Territorial Defence needs of Canada. If they were called to Europe because of NATO commitments then there was a Militia based Territorial Defence Force on hand to replace and augment them in Canada.


Personally I saw little wrong with the plan then and nothing wrong with the plan now.

From the Militia it asks that it puts 90,000 willing citizens on its rolls. Some would be tasked to jobs that only required what they could learn down at the armoury during the week to become glorified armed night-watchmen in dreary, unexciting, uncomfortable locations. Class A service.

Some would be trained to Reg Standards but continue with civvy life with a commitment to fall in when summoned. Class B service.

Some would make themselves available full time to keep the Militia running, along with Reg Force cadres, while others volunteered for the Immediate Reaction Units and the Expeditionary Forces. Class C service.


This was the fully integrated, Total Force, plan.


Disrupted by:

SSNs,
The Fall of the Wall,
Recession,
The Fall of the CAR,
Confusion and Chaos,
Institutional Inertia.

But the plan? The plan is still a workable plan.
 

Kirkhill

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The elctricity for most remote northern communities is provided by diesel generators, and for 6 months of the year there is no sun, so....

Indeed. Solar might be an issue. Winds are intermittent, as everywhere. And water is frozen....hydro is problematic. Geo-thermal might make sense in some places.

My personal preference is to try to duplicate the Medicine Hat experience and exploit "surface" deposits of Natural Gas for local use. In this case "local" means 9,000,000 km2. Might have to bottle it and ship it by river, sea, ice, (air? - unmanned? - tie it to a balloon and float it?).
 

Kirkhill

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Perhaps a two stage approach? Unmanned long endurance drones for monitoring, manned aircraft ready to go to respond.


1633882453901.jpeg

Already accepted into RAF service - Surveillance, Comms and NAV - solar-electric. How it might be used in the High Arctic in December would be interesting.

Described as a High Altitude Pseudo Satellite (HAPS).
 

Good2Golf

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Indeed. Solar might be an issue. Winds are intermittent, as everywhere. And water is frozen....hydro is problematic. Geo-thermal might make sense in some places.

My personal preference is to try to duplicate the Medicine Hat experience and exploit "surface" deposits of Natural Gas for local use. In this case "local" means 9,000,000 km2. Might have to bottle it and ship it by river, sea, ice, (air? - unmanned? - tie it to a balloon and float it?).
SMRs (small modular reactors). Canada knows how to do nuclear power. It would be a shame to not kill two birds with one stone: enduring, relatively easily-deployable power in the North; and supporting Paris 2050.
 

Kirkhill

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Looking Back at the 1987 Force some other thoughts occur.

What went wrong, in addition to the previously suggested problems:

Yugoslavia, Somalia, Rwanda and Afghanistan.
Universal service.

How different might things have been if the Canadian Government had simply seized the opportunity and impounded the GTS Katie in 2000.

Rick would have had his Big Honking Ship and established a Government Transport Capability - which could then have been defended as existing and necessary and subject to renewal and improvement.

Also, what would have happened if the VP Force had been recruited under Class A and Supplist terms, with similar fitness standards as the Rangers, and maybe the Corps of Commissionaires.

Class B and C service would require being sufficiently fit, and well trained, and available, to fall in with the Regs.
 

CBH99

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View attachment 66769

Already accepted into RAF service - Surveillance, Comms and NAV - solar-electric. How it might be used in the High Arctic in December would be interesting.

Described as a High Altitude Pseudo Satellite (HAPS).


Canada does have multiple satellites over the Arctic currently. They can be used to monitor ship traffic, among other things.

The government/DND does have the tools in place currently to observe above surface contacts. Those tools just aren’t visible or high profile.

MPA & RPA over the North sounds great. And it would be, absolutely. But is it duplicating a capability we already have, re identifying surface contacts?

True. We don’t have the ability to promptly respond to violations the way we could with a MPA. But our MPA can’t engage surface contacts anyway.


Between satellites above the Arctic and the AOPS roaming about, as well as the facility being built, we aren’t blind by any means. I think we forget just how big of an area the Arctic actually is.

Our problems are knowing what is happening sub-surface, and an ability to influence what’s happening sub-surface. And to be frank, I don’t see any Canadian government being able to change that anytime soon - even if we did UOR everything we would want.



Personally, I say let our key allies be allies.

We deployed MPA to the UK when they were experiencing a gap in having that capability - I don’t think anybody in the UK thought Canada was invading, or stealing their sovereignty. We were being a good ally.

We deployed CF-18 fighters to Alaska to take over USAF NORAD duties when their F-15C fleet was grounded due to 2 mid-air breakups back to back. I don’t think the US thought we were trying to steal Alaska, we were being a good ally.

If nuclear submarines are the main tool to operate under arctic ice, and keep Russian and Chinese nuclear submarines away - then let them fill the capability gap we have.


0.02 🍻
 

daftandbarmy

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Class B and C service would require being sufficiently fit, and well trained, and available, to fall in with the Regs.

So, like the majority of the staff in our reserve CBG HQs?

Tired Couch Potato GIF by John Larigakis
 
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