Canadian Forces Acquiring IED Simulation Solutions

Simulation software is focused on dealing with improvised explosive devices
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Simulation software is focused on dealing with improvised explosive devices

Canada’s Department of National Defence is acquiring simulation software from NGRAIN—a provider of interactive 3D simulations for maintenance training and support—to train troops on how to deal with improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan.

The DND has selected a series of NGRAIN’s Virtual Task Trainer solutions to enhance maintenance training and operations for Expedient Route Operating Capability (EROC) vehicles and Electronic Counter Measures devices, the company says. The VTT solutions will enable Canadian troops to acquire and retain maintenance skills for equipment designed to protect soldiers against the threat of IEDs, the firm says.

“When I traveled to Afghanistan in 2008 and 2009, I saw firsthand the risk and costs associated with IEDs, the number one cause of casualties among coalition forces deployed in the region,” said Gabe Batstone, NGRAIN’s chief executive officer. “It is crucial to effectively operate and maintain equipment that is designed to neutralize this threat,” he said, adding. “But fortress-like vehicles and small, intricate devices can be complicated to maintain. By using NGRAIN interactive simulations to visualize complex systems and procedures, members of the Canadian forces have a cost-effective way to sharpen and retain the maintenance skills they need to use in the field.”

The new series of force protection VTTs includes interactive simulations for the following types of EROC vehicles:

  • The Buffalo Vehicle, is a mine-protected clearance vehicle that uncovers IEDs and other threats with its extensible crane and large, claw-like “spork.” Because the vehicle is designed to maximize protection of its crew, disassembling its various components for maintenance is complex and labor intensive. The Buffalo Power Pack Removal Virtual Task Trainer and the Buffalo Transfer Case Virtual Task Trainer is expected to enable soldiers to better visualize maintenance procedures and ultimately perform critical tasks more quickly.
  • The Husky, is a mine detection vehicle equipped with large ground penetration radar panels used to locate IEDs hidden by insurgents. The removal and installation of the GPR on the vehicle is a complex procedure that is both difficult to learn and practice. The Husky and the Ground Penetration Radar Virtual Task Trainer is expected to enable vehicle operators and technicians to acquire the skills required to safely and efficiently remove and install the Husky’s GPR.