N.L. company helping to locate Avro-Arrow artifacts
Later this month, Kraken Sonar Inc. will deploy its equipment in Lake Ontario to take part in a search for long-lost pieces of Canadian aviation history.
The Newfoundland-based company was awarded its first robotics-as-a-service contract by OEX Recovery Group Inc. to help locate up to nine oneeighth-scale models of the Avro Arrow aircraft that were launched in a series of tests between 1954 and 1957.
The models, measuring three metres in length and with a wingspan of two metres, were part of the final flight tests prior to the production of the CF-105 Arrow.
When the program was unceremoniously scrapped in 1959, all materials related to it were destroyed, including six of the aircraft already completed. The only known artifacts from the program are the test models that are resting somewhere at the bottom of Lake Ontario.
The search will use Kraken’s ThunderFish Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (UAV) and the company’s Aquapix Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS) system, which was also used during the successful hunt for Sir John Franklin’s lost ships, which resulted in the discovery of the HMS Erebus in the fall of 2014.
“Leveraging what we’ve learned from that experience, I can say with confidence that we have the right people using the right technology for this expedition,” David Shea, Kraken vicepresident of engineering, stated in a news release.
When found, the models will be recovered and housed at the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum in Ottawa and the National Air Force Museum in Trenton, Ont.
The search and recovery program is a Canada 150 collaborative effort spearheaded by Osisko group companies in collaboration with its many financial partners and various groups and agencies.
“I can’t think of a better example of how advanced Canadian ocean technology is being used to search and find advanced Canadian aerospace technology,” Kraken CEO and president Karl Kenny stated in the release. “This expedition is sure to be nostalgic for the countless fans of the Avro Arrow, which became a symbol of world-class Canadian technology.”
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