With help from DCC, radar stations in northern Canada will continue monitoring northern airspace for decades to come.

A DCC team is currently overseeing the replacement of the 111 diesel electrical generator engines that power 36 North Warning System stations. The unmanned stations are located near the 70th parallel, with a monitoring and control station at 22 Wing North Bay, Ontario.

“The current engines were installed in the late 1980s,” says Nahed Farah, Technical Specialist, Project Management. “The engines were discontinued, so it was becoming increasingly difficult to maintain them.”

Five engines—three at BAR3 near Tuktoyaktuk, Northwest Territories and two in North Bay will be replaced this year, with the first in North Bay being the test run. One third of the remaining engines will be installed in each of the subsequent three years.

There are plenty of logistics associated with the $10.5-million project, Farah explains, including having the engines shipped directly from Montreal or through Inuvik to the closest shoreline landing near the station. Each engine will then be lifted by helicopter to the station, up to one kilometre away.

Coordinating this “is a matter of good management and good scheduling,” Farah says. Currently, he is working with the contractor and DND on a plan.

Another key role for DCC will be commissioning, once all three engines are installed at each site. A team of DCC, contractor and DND representatives will travel to each site to run each engine through a series of tests, and also to ensure that the old engines, which are being saved for parts, are properly crated and ready to be shipped off site.

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