QinetiQ and Inzpire - Partnering for Innovation


This blog examines the trailblazing Platform Enabled Training Capability (PETC): Phase 1 demonstration that QinetiQ and Inzpire developed for the Maritime Domain – resulting in complex live and simulated training scenarios delivered via a ship’s own combat systems, and virtually indistinguishable from live warfare.

In this blog, we look at how the need for a new type of onboard training evolved and how PETC: Phase 1 addressed that need.

Modernising warship onboard training for the 21st century

Rapid and persistent advances in military technology have led to naval forces facing ever more complex and sophisticated threats from adversaries, utilising both conventional and non-conventional weapons and warfare.

As greater proportions of naval personnel are based in ships at sea – and as those ships are increasingly and persistently forward-deployed around the world – the ability to train and rehearse missions on board utilising realistic simulation is becoming essential to ensure operational success. In this blog series, we discover how the combined team of QinetiQ and Inzpire are working together to demonstrate the potential of a ground-breaking training system for the maritime domain.

The dawn of a new era in onboard training

Historically, maritime training has been delivered utilising live assets, which tend to be fixed geographically. Often, these assets do not represent the complexity of modern threats and warfare. Provision ashore is undertaken in fixed simulation facilities, requiring crews to disembark to undertake team training. Some simulation can be provided in ships, but this is extremely limited and lacking in flexibility. It does not enable sufficient manipulation to tailor for particular missions or tasking, or allow the ship’s teams to train as they would expect to fight in real scenarios.

In 2019, we realised that, working together, the combined forces of QinetiQ and Inzpire could provide an innovative blend of technological ability and training expertise. Through its sophisticated emulators, QinetiQ already delivers high-level engineering test and evaluation in the maritime domain. Inzpire, with its intelligent White Force capability, adds a combined total of nearly 4,000 years of military expertise and experience in delivering multi-domain training. As a team, QinetiQ and Inzpire can play a significant role in SPARTAN (previously Defence Operational Training Capability Maritime (DOTC(M)) a reality. The aim of Platform Enabled Training Capability (PETC): Phase 1 to provide realistic training simulation on board warships, was the first important step.

Fast forward to today, having spent the last three years building on the technology and architecture of QinetiQ’s emulators (and adding a fair amount of engineering wizardry …). Working closely together, QinetiQ and Inzpire developed a pioneering new solution which enables the emulators to interpret simulated activity and the theatre of warfare (the synthetic environment) and feed this directly into the ship’s combat system.

This was deployed by creating a software bridge between our synthetic environments and the sensors on board the ship – replicating exactly what the ship’s warfare teams would see during live operations and allowing them to react in the same way they would if they were faced with the situation for real. The result was the demonstration of a challenging and highly immersive training experience, with future capability for deployment anywhere in the world – including while the ship is in transit.


A Typical Maritime Training Scenario

Typical Maritime Training Scenario
QinetiQ's PETC Maritime Training Scenario
PETC Maritime Training Scenario
Far-reaching implications

This innovation was game changing as it enabled authentic mission rehearsal in an appropriate operating environment, regardless of the ship’s geographic position. Warfare teams can practice and experiment in their own operations room utilising the ship’s combat system – exactly as they would in live operations. Inzpire’s White Force designed, implemented and adjusted training scenarios from ashore, dynamically adapt the training complexity, increasing and decreasing the tempo to suit the training objectives and to meet the needs of individuals and teams.

By adding QinetiQ’s expertise and Whole Force experience, we also enabled integration and interoperability with wider domain components such as carrier strike groups or land and air assets. The result of PETC: Phase 1 was a thoroughly immersive, realistic and highly complex training scenario, delivered straight into the ship’s Operations Room regardless of its geographic position or readiness.

Personalised training at the point of need

New intel was injected via voice or data comms and trainees were given the capability to communicate with a command of higher control (HICON) for authorisation, or contact the Bridge to, say, send up a drone to observe an area, instigate a Wildcat launch, or fire a missile.

Utilising dynamic scenario adjustment, Inzpire’s team were able to work with ships already deployed on operations to rapidly adapt and personalise scenarios – allowing specific events to be rehearsed multiple times based on upcoming tasking or missions. This included, but was not limited to, the protection of high value units against known threats during choke-point transits, or reaction to probing by potentially hostile aircraft and surface vessels.

The result was a unique and innovative training and mission-readiness capability, made possible as a result of our two organisations coming together and working in genuine partnership.

Contact us at to learn more about our Platform Enabled Training Capability (PETC).