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We Believe That the Balance of Live and Virtual Training Needs to Shift More Toward Virtual

Managing director, CAE India, Ananth Ramaswami

Managing director, CAE India, Ananth Ramaswami How do you assess the Indian market, as far as simulators are concerned? What opportunities do you see here?
India’s defence forces are on the verge of adapting and revising their training patterns to make simulation-based training more prevalent in their overall training curriculum. The increased use of simulation includes both using simulators as well as embedded simulation. The simple fact, and this has been proven by many defence forces around the world, is that the increased and more efficient use of simulation is part of the solution to lowering costs while enhancing safety, readiness and capability. Although this awareness and awakening has happened a bit slow in India, it has evolved over the years and is now being pursued with more enthusiasm and resolve at the higher echelons of the service headquarters. This effectively means that the services are more aware of state-of-the-art full-mission simulators that provide the highest levels of fidelity, which is really what is required to balance live and virtual training.

With this change in the outlook of the services and a ‘paradigm shift’ in attitudes towards simulation, we see many opportunities in the field of flight simulators in India for fighters, tankers and transports, maritime patrol aircraft and helicopters. In addition, simulation is also effective for technical training, so we see growing opportunities to provide our virtual maintenance training systems.

What is the status of CAE simulators for the IAF’s C-130J fleet? Will CAE be providing a simulator for Indian Navy’s P-8I aircraft?
CAE is an acknowledged global leader in the development of flight simulators, and in fact, the company has designed and manufactured all the C-130J full-mission simulators used by operators of the latest variant of the Hercules. This includes the C-130J full-mission simulator used by the Indian Air Force (IAF) and now in operation at Hindon Air Force Base outside Delhi. CAE developed the IAF’s C-130J simulator under subcontract to Lockheed Martin. As part of an offset requirement, CAE is in discussions to provide support services to run and maintain the C-130J simulator, much like we do for a range of other simulators operated by India’s defence forces. We have provided all the necessary inputs to the concerned Directorate at the service headquarters to convey our commitment and willingness to meet their requirements.

As far as a P-8I simulator is concerned, there has been no definitive requirement as yet and we are not under contract to develop a P-8I simulator for the Indian Navy. I would note that CAE is Boeing’s simulator provider in the US for the P-8, and we are under subcontract to Boeing to develop 10 P-8A operational flight trainers for the US Navy, several of which have already been delivered. We continue to maintain a dialogue with Boeing and the Indian Navy and are ready to support any simulator requirement for the P-8I.

What is the status of training simulators for the Arjun Main Battle Tank and the T Series tanks of the Indian Army?
CAE supplied the Arjun troop trainer systems in collaboration with India’s Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE) in Chennai. We have delivered three Arjun driver and three Arjun gunner simulators, all of which can be networked to provide integrated tank level training for the gunner, commander and driver. The Indian Army is in the process of procuring additional Arjun training systems and we are in talks with the army and the Heavy Vehicles Factory (HVF) in Chennai.

The Indian army selected another contractor to develop their T-72/T-90 gunnery simulators, and the army is still deciding on their procurement approach for T-72/T-90 driver simulators. Once a request for proposal (RFP) is issued for T-72/T-90 driver simulators, we will evaluate it and decide whether we will bid.
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