Bluedrop Performance Learning Inc. (“Bluedrop”) [TSX-V: BPL] together with Boeing [NYSE: BA], announced today that it has completed a major milestone in the development of the next-generation CH-47 Chinook helicopter Rear Crew Trainer with the integration of its Canadian-built fuselage with Boeing’s cockpit training simulator system.
The fuselage is part of a forty-two foot-long mock-up of the Chinook helicopter that was manufactured by Bluedrop and installed in its Bluedrop Training and Simulation Centre facility in Halifax, Canada. In addition to this latest milestone, the team has tested, and is on track to achieve a 100% untethered, or wireless, virtual reality training experience that will maximize the flexibility and safety of the trainer.
“Bluedrop has designed an important part of a high-fidelity, immersive training environment that will enhance the effectiveness and safety of service members operating the Chinook in the United States and elsewhere,” said Roger Schallom, Boeing senior manager of the Americas for International Strategic Partnerships. “Together with Boeing’s existing cockpit training device, it allows for fully interactive crew and mission-scenario training, with unparalleled realism for greater effectiveness.”
The initial development phase of the trainer began one year ago following a more than US$2 million cash commitment from Boeing as well as, an intellectual property license associated with the specific technical characteristics of the Chinook platform, engineering support from the Boeing training and simulation group during the development phase, and a five-year commitment to support the on-going sales and marketing of the new product within Boeing’s global supply chain.
“This major milestone would not have been reached without the full commitment of Boeing’s engineering group,” said Jean-Claude Siew, Bluedrop’s vice president of Technology and Simulation. “The combined efforts and expertise led to the design of the most innovative solution integrating Virtual Reality and real time simulation”.
The integration and testing process will continue through the fall, with a full demonstration of the stand-alone trainer ready by year end. Final delivery of the trainer to Boeing is anticipated in early 2017. The Chinook is used by the U.S. Army, U.S. Army Reserve, National Guard and more than 19 counties including Canada, the United Kingdom, Netherlands, Japan, Italy, Greece, Spain, South Korea, Australia, and the United Arab Emirates.
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