A $16-million Royal Canadian Navy contract for submarine training simulator support will secure skilled jobs in Dartmouth at MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd., an official said Tuesday.
“This is basically an extension and expansion of an existing contract, but we’re looking at a minimum of another four years and options for an additional two years afterwards,” Richard Billard, business development manager at MacDonald Dettwiler, said in an interview.
The deal announced Monday by the British Columbia-based firm will see its Dartmouth operations continue to provide support for navy simulators at Canadian Forces Base Halifax.
“The contract extends and secures the work we are doing here,” Billard said of the implications for MacDonald Dettwiler operations at Burnside Park in Dartmouth.
MacDonald Dettwiler also has operation centres in Ottawa and in Richmond, B.C., in the United States, and at some international locations. The Canadian company employs about 4,800 people at 11 locations.
The simulators are used to train navy personnel on operating and maintaining Victoria-class submarines. MacDonald Dettwiler has provided support since 2009.
Billard said the technical support contract will expand in this next four-year phase, which started officially on Monday, to include some new training simulators designed by the navy.
The firm’s role is to provide support for simulators used for training for machinery control, submarine controls, weapons handling and discharge, communications and diesel hydraulics and some other Victoria-class submarine operations.
“The use of training simulators improves safety decision-making skills during realistic mission scenarios, in a cost efficient and timely manner,” a news release from MacDonald Dettwiler said.
Training for Canada’s four Victoria-class submarines is conducted at a dedicated state-of-the-art facility at CFB Halifax.