Vortex Studio Powers Bluedrop’s Rescue Hoist Simulators to Save Lives and Cut Training Costs

CM Labs’ industry-leading simulation platform helps Bluedrop save clients upwards of $7,000 per hour of flight time.

CM Labs today announced that its Vortex Studio platform is being used to power simulators developed by Bluedrop Training & Simulations to train for effective helicopter rescue hoists.

Bluedrop is leveraging CM Labs’ Vortex Studio technology for unique training simulators in development for military and aerospace clients. In one such partnership, Bluedrop used Vortex Studio to develop a training platform for the twin-rotor CH-47 Chinook helicopter. The 42-foot-long simulator applies VR technology to teach users how to operate the aircraft’s three hoists.

In particular, the simulation allows Bluedrop clients to provide training for high-risk scenarios such as nighttime and rough weather operations, mechanical issues such as cable breaks or damaged winches, and awkward loads, whether due to incorrectly attached loads, an uneven centre of gravity, or panicked rescuees.

“When a client needs to respond to an incident and lower a hoist, it’s risky for everyone involved,” says Scott Kaiser, Bluedrop’s Director of Product and Development. “Having flight crews who know how the basket will react to the rough elements they’ll face during a rescue mission, that’s the type of experience that will save lives.”

Along with the safe, high-value training experience that the Bluedrop simulator offers to clients such as The Boeing Company, it also reduces wear and tear on equipment, fuel consumption, and logistics and planning time. Training schedules no longer hinge on helicopter and crew availability, weather, or any of a host of other factors.

“This is a huge value for customers who now don’t have to put a Chinook helicopter in the air every time they want to train winch operators,” adds Marc-Alexandre Vezina, CM Lab’s product manager for Vortex Studio. “At over $7,000 per hour of flight time, these helicopters can be quite expensive to run.”

Vortex Studio is the industry standard for building and visualising simulations. With the platform simulating a wide range of mechanical devices, it has been used in the aviation sector to add landing gear, refueling capabilities, and cables to existing flight simulators. Additional capabilities provided by Vortex Studio for flight simulator applications extend to ground operations such as de-icing, towing, re-fueling, re-arming, and others.

CM Labs developed Vortex Studio to provide users who have a focus on engineering with a simple content creation platform that enables drag-and-drop workflows rather than software coding. It is this platform that allowed Bluedrop to recreate the helicopter cable and hoist, and use engineering properties and specifications to emulate the most true-to-life scenarios possible.

About CM Labs Simulations

For over 20 years, CM Labs has provided physics-based simulation capabilities that set the industry standard for interactive 3D simulation and visualisation. Through its Vortex Studio platform, CM Labs provides real-time simulation capabilities for training, mission rehearsal, serious games, virtual prototyping, and testing.

Vortex Studio customers include CAE, FMC Schilling Robotics, Honda, L-3, Liebherr, Lockheed Martin, NASA, Volvo, and over 100 other leading companies and academic institutions.

Vortex® is a registered trademark of CM Labs Simulations.

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