I/ITSEC delegates heard details of how the US Army is innovating a complex portfolio of modernisation programmes.
I/ITSEC 2021: Elbit emphasises cross-domain integration
Just before I/ITSEC, Shephard had the opportunity to speak with Alon Afik, VP T&S at Elbit Systems and Martin Fausset, CEO Elbit Systems UK, about what the company would be highlighting in Orlando and the status of current UK MoD programmes.
‘Our focus at I/ITSEC will be across the land, sea and air domains,’ explained Afik. ‘We will be highlighting our ability to connect different simulators through a common infrastructure that we call OneSim.
‘We have a lot of experience of this in Israel on a number of mission training centres including for the air force, the navy and at the army’s Brigade and Battlegroup Mission Training Centre [B²MTC],’ said Afik. ‘The IDF started training on this B²MTC last year.’
Although Elbit Systems won a $27 million contract to supply a SE Asian country for ACMI training last year, Afik said that he believed the ACMI market was slowing.
‘I believe there are two reasons for this,’ he opined. ‘The first is that we are approaching market saturation and secondly, modern aircraft can fulfil a lot of what ACMI did in the past with datalinks and embedded training systems.’
In the UK, one of Elbit Systems UK’s most recent programmes is the Interim Combined Arms Virtual Simulation – Deployable (ICAVS(D)) contract that will see it replace the Unit-Based Virtual Trainer (UBVT).
As a so-called ‘pathfinder project’ for the British Army’s Collective Training Transformation Programme (CTTP), ICAVS(D) will ‘help inform the requirements’ for the future replacement of the UK’s Command and Staff Training (CAST) and the Combined Arms Tactical Trainer (CATT) training systems.
‘The IDF started training on this B²MTC last year.’ — Alon Afik VP T&S Elbit Systems
‘This is an important strategic project for us,’ explained Fausset. ‘The hardware configuration of laptops and small PCs, along with larger displays, means the system can be deployed across many different sites at home or abroad.’
Remaining in the land domain, as well as ICAVS(D), Elbit Systems UK is also involved in the UK’s Joint Fires Synthetic Trainer (JFST) and Joint Fires Mobile Trainer (JFMT) programmes. The first JFST equipment is about to be delivered by Elbit Systems UK’s subsidiary, Ferranti Technologies.
Elbit Systems UK is partnered with KBR in the Affinty JV to support MFTS. (Photo: ESUK)
On the naval front, Elbit Systems UK is also part of the Team Fisher consortium that is servicing the requirements of the Royal Navy’s Project Selborne, where the company is the Synthetic Integrator.
Asked what this role entails, Fausset told Shephard that ‘we are responsible for all of the simulators within the project. Depending on the requirement, we will be updating, enhancing or replacing these simulators with the majority of the new devices going to the new submarine school.’
Elbit Systems UK is certainly growing, a fact confirmed by Fausset when he spoke about the company’s new factory in Kent that is involved in manufacturing parts for the UK’s Maritime EW Systems Integrated Capability (MEWSIC), components for the Watchkeeper UAV and elements of the UK’s new NVG equipment.
On the air side, the company’s major involvement in the UK is with KBR in the Affinity JV in support of the Military Flight Training System (MFTS) programme.
The latest contract here sees Affinity selected for the operation of four additional Texan T-6C aircraft over a 12-year period at RAF Valley. This brings the T-6C fleet up to 14 and the programme also includes the Grob 120TP and Embraer Phenom 100.
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