The Bell CH-146 Griffon is a multi-role utility helicopter that first entered service with the Canadian Armed Forces in 1995. Its varied roles include aerial firepower, reconnaissance, search and rescue and aero-mobility tasks.
Given the Griffon’s multi-purpose role, mission rehearsal and tactical training is crucial for flight personnel, which typically consists of two pilots and a flight engineer. But in-flight training is costly – conservative estimates put the rate per flying hour for the Griffon at more than $12,000.
The need for fiscal prudence and accountability to the Canadian taxpayer has fueled the adoption of Modelling and Simulation (M&S) in defence system life cycles across the CAF to reduce training costs. The first M&S systems for the Griffon were developed in the 1990s. The cost of employing the complex, full-motion M&S systems typical of commercial aircraft can be prohibitive for a budget-conscious military.
DND issued a call for simulation technical investigation and engineering services (SIM-TIES) to deliver a unified and web-based M&S platform for the Griffon that would follow recognized interoperability standards and encourage adoption and sharing of best practices and information.
In 2017, ADGA won the competitive SIM-TIES bid. ADGA now employs a multi-disciplinary team of developers, designers, instructors and engineers to provide simulation services, on an “as-and-when requested basis.”
Services provided by ADGA encompass:
- Distributed Simulation Engineering and Execution Process (DSEEP) services
- Exercise Control (EXCON) Services to assist DND ops teams in defining and being able to fill the applicable roles
- Distributed Mission Training (DMT) development
- Exercise management, development and execution services
- Ongoing in-service support for simulation infrastructure
- Providing simulation-based and simulation-centered learning content
- Assessing effectiveness of simulation practices and developing simulation performance metrics
- Providing network engineering services
ADGA continues to support and maintain, an effective and reliable training platform for the Griffon that reduces training time and cost.
To date, six of the Mission Rehearsal and Tactics Trainers (MRTTs) have been deployed at CFB Gagetown, Valcartier and Edmonton. These MRTTs include a variety of mission kits that allow for each simulator to be quickly customized for different mission parameters.
Under the terms of the current contract, ADGA supports and sustains the MRTTs to ensure they continue to serve the evolving needs of the CAF. This includes the development of portable MRTTs. These units distill the functionality of the full-sized units into a much smaller footprint, to dramatically expand the flexibility of simulator training for Griffon crews, wherever in the world they may operate.
During deployments overseas, CAF personnel often encounter situations that are unique to each theatre of operation. ADGA can quickly configure portable MRTTs with custom electronic warfare mission kits to simulate local conditions for optimal training by Griffon crews on-site. Threats can be simulated in a way that is simply not possible on an actual ship in the air. This mitigates the risks of loss of life, damaged equipment and mission failure.
ADGA’s proven expertise in custom M&S development for the Griffon and other defence systems instills strength, confidence and expertise into Canada’s Armed Forces, to prepare military personnel for the modern battlefield and ensure mission success.