Interview article

HCM – Contending Teams
JERROD RILEY  |  Mar 15, 2008

The challenge of upgrading the 12 Halifax class frigates will fallto one of two industrial teams...

With so much riding on the success of HCM/FELEX it is worth taking a look at the bidders for this contract. In preparation for the feature article, each of the team leaders was invited to respond to three general questions concerning the project. We recognize that the Request for Proposal was just issued on February 6th and it is still too early for detailed responses, therefore, FrontLine will revisit HCM progress in a subsequent edition.

There is an extensive list of upgrades planned under the HCM/FELEX umbrella. What unique aspects of your team gives you an edge in delivering this project?

CSI Halifax Team
Steven Yankowich
Executive Pursuit Manager for General Dynamics Canada

Modernizing warships with the capability and complexity of the Canadian Navy Halifax class Frigate is in many ways more challenging than a new-build program. This is especially true for the HCM/FELEX refit as legacy systems must not only be integrated with new technology but also must have the flexibility to accommodate future mission requirements throughout the life of the fleet. The CSI Halifax Team, established by General Dynamics Canada is positioned to provide both the technological continuity and persistent innovation needed to meet these challenges.

As prime contractor GD Canada has the most experienced joint C4ISR program management, systems engineering and combat systems integration capabilities in Canada. Thales’ proven naval combat systems products, including the world’s only OACE Level 4 open systems architecture, and unparalleled experience with similar programs strongly complements GD Canada’s capabilities. Raytheon’s past work on the Halifax class weapon system provides critical technological continuity and ship integration capabilities essential to mitigate risk and maintain fleet ­operational availability.

United under strong Canadian leadership, the CSI Halifax Team has the depth of recent and relevant experience to deliver a world-class combat system solution within the demanding budget, schedule and operational availability constraints specified by the Canadian Navy.

Canada’s HCM Team
Tom Digan
President of Lockheed Martin Canada

Lockheed Martin and Canada’s HCM Team have broad domestic and international experience in all aspects of C4ISR for naval, air, ground and joint programs.
Most critical to the success of HCM/ FELEX is our experience and proven record of success on Naval combat system integration programs in Canada and internationally. Lockheed Martin Canada has been the Combat Systems Integrator (CSI) for the Halifax class since inception.

We are also the original equipment manufacturer of the command and control system. Additionally, Lockheed Martin, along with our partner xwave, have been maintaining both the Halifax and Iroquois class combat systems for the life of the ships and we continue to do so today.

The Halifax class is a multi-mission surface combatant with a highly capable and complex combat system. No two navies operate exactly the same way, and there are many unique Canadian capabilities that the Navy and Lockheed Martin have developed, tested, certified and deployed over the last 15 years.

Another unique aspect of our team is our partnership with Saab Systems. Saab’s 9LV Combat Management System provides a core element of the Canadian Advanced Command and Control System or “CanACCS-9LV.” Already deployed in 14 international navies and on more than 200 warships worldwide, Saab’s 9LV provides the Halifax class fleet with advanced warfighting capabilities, including proven Enhanced Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) anti-ship missile defense capabilities. Lockheed Martin and Saab Systems have worked together to ensure the successful integration of 9LV with proven and deployed Canadian Navy command and control system capabilities and existing interfaces to Halifax class subsystems. CanACCS-9LV provides the Canadian Navy with a proven, low risk CCS, which is state of the art and has the open architecture to enable technology insertion to meet future requirements.

In January, Canada’s HCM Team demonstrated CanACCS-9LV at Lockheed Martin’s Montreal-based Naval Integra­tion Lab to Canadian and international navy personnel, and other government representatives (see photo).

Last year, the Lockheed Martin Canada business was realigned with the corporation’s Maritime Systems & Sensors (MS2) business. MS2 is the CSI for all of the US Navy’s Aegis cruisers and destroyers, Littoral Combat Ship and for six international navies. MS2 is a major partner on the HCM team and has brought forward experience, proven systems engineering processes and resources to further reduce risk on the program. Combined with the naval experience of our team members; Saab Systems, IBM Canada, xwave, CAE Professional Services and L-3 Electronic Systems we offer the most comprehensive set of Canadian Naval domain experience, proven international command and control technology and successful program management achievements of any team.

Our depth and breadth of experience on this ship, and in naval surface combat systems internationally, both in new construction and modernization programs, is unparalleled.

What recent projects has your company undertaken that would illustrate your ability to deliver such a complex project?

CSI Halifax Team
Steven Yankowich
HCM is an extremely complex project and program management experience on this scale will be a critical success factor. Recent GD Canada experience on complex large-scale programs including CP­140 Aurora Group III Modernization and the Land Command System clearly demonstrate our ability to partner with DND, PWGSC, Industry Canada and Canada’s industrial base.

With respect to the navy in particular, GD Canada has experience in working with Canadian shipyards through the installations of the CANTASS and SQS-510 systems on the Halifax Class frigates. GD Canada is also the lead contractor for the ship modifications/installations required on the HALIFAX Class ships to accommodate the new CH148 Cyclone Maritime Helicopter.

CSI Halifax Team will also leverage the existing partnerships between General Dynamics and Thales who are providing the command and control system for the U.S. Navy’s General Dynamics Littoral Combat Ship (LCS).

From the engineering process perspective, General Dynamics Canada recently achieved CMMI Level 5, the highest rating on the Capability Maturity Model Integration scale developed by industry, government and the Software Engineering Institute. CMMI assesses the full range of an organization's software and systems engineering, program management, and organizational management capabilities.

All of this experience will be leveraged to mitigate risk and deliver HCM to the satisfaction of the Canadian Navy.

Canada’s HCM Team
Tom Digan
With the broad experience of our team, there are many answers to this question. To focus on three program areas, the Canadian Halifax Combat Systems Engineering Services (CSES) and Trainer Support programs; the U.S. Navy Aegis Modernization program; and, the Australian ANZAC program are all very relevant to the HCM requirement.

As the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and the combat systems integrator for the Halifax class frigates, including the provision of the Operations Room Team Trainer (ORTT) and Maintenance Procedures Trainer, Lockheed Martin Canada has consistently demonstrated the ability to deliver critical, complex capabilities for the Canadian Navy.

Over the last several years, we have worked in partnership with the Canadian Navy and the Canadian shipyards to upgrade and modernize parts of the Halifax class combat system, including adding COTS technology and integrating upgrades to the on-board weapon suite. Through this project and our strong team, we have the domain expertise, resources and processes necessary to deliver the HCM CSI project.

Lockheed Martin MS2 is the prime CSI and in-service support provider for the U.S. Navy’s 84-ship Aegis cruiser and destroyer fleet, and for six international Aegis ship classes. Similar to Canada’s frigates, the U.S. Navy is modernizing its Aegis ships to expand operational capability and meet future Navy requirements. MS2, in partnership with the U.S. Navy and seven shipyards in four nations, has consistently delivered on this complex CSI project.

The CSI, systems engineering and modernization processes from Aegis modernization are directly applicable to the HCM CSI project. An example is the early assignment of a program manager for the HCM CSI Design and Build: David Luhta was named to this role in January. Dave brings decades of CSI experience on new construction and modernization programs. Dave has worked with multiple international ship yards and design agents and lived in Halifax for three years as a naval exchange officer. Immediately prior to his HCM CSI responsibilities, he was the CSI director for the South Korean Aegis KDX-III destroyer program. As a testament to his leadership, the first-of-class KDX-III ship launched ahead of schedule and is planned to deliver ahead of schedule. The early and solid maturity of the Korean program provided Lockheed Martin the opportunity to transition Dave’s recent and relevant experience to the HCM program.

The third recent project that our team has accomplished which demonstrates our ability to deliver on a complex naval surface combatant CSI project is the Australian ANZAC frigates. The ANZAC class of ships are multi-function frigates with capabilities and missions very similar to the HALIFAX frigates. Saab Systems delivered the fully operational shipboard and shore-based systems for the ANZAC frigates on time and on budget and is successfully executing as the in-service support provider to maintain and upgrade the ANZAC ships. Saab’s expertise, 9LV Combat Management System, and proven ESSM integration success are directly applicable to the HCM CSI project and will further reduce risk.

With an urgent need to replace our destroyer capability and to plan for eventual frigate replacement, how important is HCM/ FELEX to maintaining the industrial capabilities required to undertake a new build program?

Canada’s HCM Team
Tom Digan
We believe that FELEX is an important project as the Halifax class frigates are a critical component of the Canadian Navy and must continue to modernize to maintain their technological advantage and meet future domestic and international maritime defense requirements. From an industrial capability standpoint, FELEX is an important program as it provides a necessary bridge in industry capability, resources and technology to the destroyer and eventual frigate replacement programs.

The surface navy industrial capabilities of the two shipyards under the FELEX umbrella, Lockheed Martin, xwave and the design agent Fleetway, are unique and critical skills in Canadian industry. FELEX provides the continuity to maintain these national assets for future shipbuilding programs.

Lockheed Martin Canada’s legacy has a successful track record of maritime economic development, having achieved over 120% of our original Canadian Patrol Frigate Industrial and Regional Benefits (IRB) obligation. We have acted on our belief of the critical linkage of ship building and Canadian security and economic survival. We currently maintain a staff of naval domain engineers and technologists, including the Lockheed Martin Combat System Integration Center of Excellence for the Canadian Navy in Montreal. Our team for HCM has been formed over the years through our partnerships with industry. It is Canadian based and will continue to provide economic diversification in Canada by investing and building on our existing contracts and relationships with the Maritime industry today.

CSI Halifax Team
Steven Yankowich
HCM/FELEX is critical to maintaining the industrial capabilities required to undertake a new-build program. The CSI Halifax Team will leverage the combined experience and expertise of more than 6,000 Canadian-based employees. As part of our bid development planning and strategy we have already engaged with suppliers across Canada to identify the most robust Maritime expertise and technology available in Canada and will continue to do so. The comprehensive regional industrial diversification and technology transfer that will flow from the HCM-CSI program will further strengthen Canada’s industrial ability to compete and execute on future ship programs in both the domestic and international markets.

As an example, General Dynamics Canada will be opening a Maritime ­In Service Support (ISS) Centre of Excellence. The new Maritime ISS Centre of Excellence will support, leverage and expand existing relationships from previous programs and tap into the significant Maritime talent pool for HCM.

Similarly, Thales is building on its Quebec technology and manufacturing base to strengthen the diversity of the Canadian industrial base and ensure all regions of Canada have the opportunity to work on implementing this world-class technology in the HCM-CSI project.

Wrap up
Each team is very confident in their ability to successfully deliver HCM/FELEX. Such strong competition bodes well for the bidding process. The Canadian defence industry is clearly poised to meet this challenge and the government will have a difficult time choosing which team will ultimately complete the upgrade of our 12 Halifax class frigates. FrontLine wishes each of the contenders well with their bids, and will to keep readers informed of developments as this critical defence project advances.
Jerrod Riley is the National Deputy Director of The Navy League of Canada, where his responsibilities include Communications and Maritime Affairs. His has been published in several national and international magazines.
© Frontline Defence 2008