Canada-based Enterprise Aviation Group has teamed up with Regional Express Group, the parent company of Australian regional and domestic airline Rex, as part of ongoing preparations for the upcoming tender by the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) later this year. The recent release of the Request for Information (RFI) called for the provision of up to four twin engine turboprops capable of intracontinental flight operations on both ski and wheel landing gear. Enterprise can deliver and operate this fixed wing element of the programme.
Enterprise holds the distinction of being the first provider of similar services to various government programmes, including the AAD, dating back to 2001. With a fleet of DHC-6 Twin Otter and DC-3T Basler aircraft, the company plays a pivotal role in transporting essential supplies, equipment and personnel to remote Arctic and Antarctic locations. It has flown more than 27,000 accident-free hours in the past decade.
Director and chief pilot Brian Burchartz says: “We are honoured to join forces with Rex in this exclusive sub-contract agreement for the upcoming Antarctic RFT. Our long-term experience operating in Antarctica, which includes many firsts, coupled with our contemporary Antarctic operations of the Twin Otter and Basler aircraft conducting both tourism support activities and scientific mission support for numerous government agencies, positions us well in our combined effort to provide the best solution for enhancing the current intracontinental fixed wing turboprop component of the AAD capabilities.”
Rex’s broad plan is to engage specialist providers to manage aspects of the programme that demand more specialised, complementary expertise. Australian rotary operator Helicopter Resources will provide up to four twin-engine helicopters capable of both land and sea operations, including on board the AAD’s flagship vessel, the RSV Nuyina. And it must also source one large intercontinental passenger jet capability plus a significant scaling up of uncrewed aerial system capability for operations during the Antarctic Austral Summer (October to March).