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Viking plans world demo tour for Guardian 400 

Photo: Artist's rendering of the Guardian 400 Technical Demonstrator aircraft, featuring L/H SCAR pod with Hensoldt Argos EO/IR imaging turret, R/H SCAR pod with Leonardo Osprey Radar System and Sentient Vidar Camera system, Airborne Technologies’ tactical workstation, Viking conformal bubble windows, IKHANA L/H & R/H wing-mounted hardpoints, Thunder Bay Aviation stretcher racks, and aft lavatory. Viking

 

Today during the CANSEC Defence & Security show, Viking Air Limited of Victoria, British Columbia announced its plans to hold a world demonstration tour for its Guardian 400 aircraft, the special missions variant of the Viking Series 400 Twin Otter. The world tour will include detailed briefings and demonstration flights in Europe, Africa, Middle East, India, South East Asia, Oceania and North America. 

For the past six months, a production Series 400 Twin Otter has been undergoing modifications to transform it into Viking’s Guardian 400 demonstrator aircraft for the proposed world tour. It will feature a left-hand SCAR pod with Hensoldt Argos electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) imaging turret, multi-spectral HDTV camera, mega-pixel HD thermal imager, laser rangefinder, multi-mode auto tracker, and Remote Image Bus (RIB) video feed for display on the cockpit MFD or crew workstation. The demonstrator will also feature a right-hand SCAR pod with Leonardo Osprey radar system and Sentient Vidar Camera system. 

In addition to its mission sensor package, the Guardian 400 prototype will be equipped with an Airborne Technologies tactical workstation with high-definition touchscreen monitors, data/voice/video recorder, Mission Management Unit (MMU), mission radio communications, intuitive hand controller for MCU and SLR camera targeting, CarteNav AIMS mission system software, Kestrel MTI targeting software, and IKHANA ergonomic mission seat for optimised crew comfort. The prototype will also be equipped with Viking conformal bubble windows, left and right wing-mounted hardpoints by IKHANA, Thunder Bay Aviation stretcher racks, and an aft lavatory for crew comfort. 

With a target launch date of September this year, the Guardian 400 world tour has briefing and demonstration flights proposed throughout Europe, North Africa, Central Africa, Southeastern Africa, the Middle East, Southern Asia, Asia Pacific, North America and will culminate in Ottawa, Canada to coincide with the 2020 CANSEC Defence & Security show. 

“As we’ve anticipated development of a Guardian 400 technical demonstrator for many years, to now be able to show off its unique performance capabilities and incredible versatility to interested military and government organisations in their home countries is exciting to say the least,” said Robert Mauracher, Viking executive vice president, Sales & Marketing. “While the tour details are still under development, we encourage interested parties to contact us if they wish to participate in a flight demonstration.” 

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