The decorated and historic 434 ‘Bluenose’ Squadron is once again back in action.
There was a ceremony on Thursday morning at the National Air Force Museum of Canada to mark the ‘re-birth’ of the Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron.
This is the fifth time the squadron has been re-activated, amalgamating five existing Test and Evaluation Flights and creating two new ones.
The squadron will be made up of: Helicopter Operational Test and Evaluation Flight at 12 Wing Shearwater, Nova Scotia; Long Range Patrol Operational and Test Flight at 14 Wing Greenwood, Nova Scotia; Transport Operational Test and Evaluation Flight at 8 Wing Trenton; Land Aviation Test and Evaluation Flight in St. Hubert, Quebec; Fighter Operational Test and Evaluation Flight in 4 Wing Cold Lake, Alberta and the two new OT&EFs: Search and Rescue Test and Evaluation Flight at 19 Wing Comox, British Columbia and Aerospace Test and Evaluation Flight at 8 Wing Trenton.
Lieutenant-Colonel Graham Edwards, the Commanding Officer says this will support their role as a change driver.
The 434 Squadron will be headquartered at the RCAF Aerospace Warfare Centre at CFB Trenton.
The squadron was established in 1943 and will test, evaluate, develop and investigate new technologies, procedures and tactics to ensure the RCAF remains prepared for future operations.
During World War II, 434 Squadron flew 2,582 sorties amounting to 14,622 operational hours. There were 75 aircraft lost and 347 aircrew killed in action or presumed dead, 121 prisoners of war and 16 who evaded capture.
Lieutenant-Colonel Edwards says the squadron is ready to get to work immediately.
The 434 Squadron was last stood down in 2002 and the colours placed in All Saints Cathedral in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The colours were relocated to Trenton with the re-activation of the squadron.