May 2016 • Volume 21 • Issue 3 ho W ’s ho
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Military training, modeling and simulation solutions with a global perspective
Inside This Issue... Simulating Maintenance Page 16
Better Image Generation Page 21
Advanced Distributed Learning
International Vector: Air Vice-Marshal Andrew Turner Commander AOC 22 Group and Chief of Staff, Headquarters Royal Air Force, United Kingdom
JPMO for Medical M&S Page 28
Captain Erik “Rock” Etz Commander Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division
N AT I O N A L T R A I N I N G A N D S I M U L AT I O N A S S O C I AT I O N T H E W O R L D â€™ S L A R G E S T M O D E L I N G & S I M U L AT I O N E V E N T Aerospace Simulation & Training Aircrew Trainers Applied R&D Applied Systems Engineering Big Data Classroom Training Products & Services Cloud Computing Computer Hardware Construction / Mining Consultancy/Project Management Cyber DIS IEEE 1278.1x or HLA 1516 Capable Disaster Relief/Planning Simulations Distance Learning Distributed Simulation and Learning Educational Products & Services Electronic Components Electronic Training/Synthetic Engineering/Damage Control Trainers Exercise Management Flight Simulation & Training Gaming Homeland Security Simulation & Training Instructional Systems Design LVC (Live, Virtual, Constructive) Manufacturing Medical Simulation & Training Mission Planning/Mission Rehearsal Modeling Services Oil, Gas, Energy Operational & Maintenance Services Operator/Driver Trainers Physical Training Equipment Pre-Brief/After Action Review Research & Development Shiphandling Trainers Simulation Security Simulation Software Simulation Toolkits Small Arms Training Small Business Staffing/Logistics Support STEM Tactics Trainers Trade Publication / Media Training Products Training Services Transportation Vehicle Trainers Verification & Validation Visual Computing Visual Display Products Weapon Systems Trainers & Equipment
INTERSERVICE/INDUSTRY TRAINING, SIMULATION & EDUCATION CONFERENCE 14,700 Attendees u 470 Exhibitors u 150 Sessions u 58 Countries, over 1,900 International Delegates u
NOVEMBER 28-DECEMBER 2, 2016 u WWW.IITSEC.ORG u ORLANDO, FLORIDA
Military Training International Features
Table of Contents Departments
Who’s Who at NAWCTSD An exclusive Military Training International pictorial review of the senior leadership at the U.S. Navy’s Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division.
Simulating MX Highly realistic hardware and software simulation have long been used to train pilots. Simulation is now being used more widely to save costs and improve training of the mechanics who keep both pilots and aircraft in the air. By Henry Canaday
Better IG A solution widely adopted by militaries globally is to train using image generation, a technology shared with and taken from the video gaming industry. By Hank Hogan
Fostering ADL Successes ADL, in the military context, is thought of as a series of capabilities that delivers training and education when, where, and how warfighters need it based upon their individual preferences and goals. By Peter Buxbaum
Team Orlando PEO STRI recently activated the Joint Project Management Office for Medical Modeling and Simulation (JPMO MMS) and established a provisional program manager to oversee the office. By Theresa Bradley
Cover Q&A with Captain Erik “Rock” Etz Commander, Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division
2 6 27 28
Program Highlights people Resource Center Team Orlando
Air Vice-Marshal Andrew Turner Commander AOC 22 Group and Chief of Staff, Headquarters Royal Air Force United Kingdom
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May 2016 • Volume 21 Issue 3
Program Highlights Virtual Reality Scene Generators for A-10 Training The U.S. Air Force recently acquired 88 new MetaVR Virtual Reality Scene Generator (VRSG) licenses for the A-10 Full Mission Trainer (FMT) program. This acquisition brings the total to nearly 400 MetaVR VRSG software licenses used for coordinated close-air-support training missions between pilots and joint terminal air controllers (JTACs). In addition, software maintenance was purchased for nearly 300 licenses of MetaVR’s real-time 3D virtual world rendering software, which provides the A-10 simulator program access to MetaVR’s software enhancements, new 3D models, and terrain databases. The new VRSG licenses will be used to expand the field-of-view of the existing simulators, which will provide greater immersion and situational awareness for the pilot. Since 2001, the U.S. Air Force has been using VRSG to equip new and existing sites with networked training systems that train U.S. pilots and JTACs in close-air-support exercises. In addition to the A-10 FMT, such systems include the recently awarded JTC TRS simulator and the Advanced Joint Terminal Attack Controller Training System (AJTS). The AJTS is in use at the JTAC schoolhouse at Nellis Air Force Base and at 18 other USAF and Air National Guard training sites across the U.S. The A-10 FMT uses MetaVR visuals for the out-the-window and sensor views and consists of a high-fidelity replica of an A-10 aircraft cockpit, an Instructor Operator Station (IOS), a visual system and other equipment that provides trainees initial and ongoing training for flight, mission, and tactics. The base FMT simulator configuration uses MetaVR VRSG to drive an eight-screen display configured to fit within a nine-foot ceiling. The company also provides internally funded terrain databases to the Simulator Database Facility at Kirtland Air Force Base, which are provided as government-furnished equipment to any MetaVR VRSG user at no charge as one of the benefits of annual software maintenance. The U.S. Air Force recently integrated MetaVR VRSG with Battlespace Simulations’ Modern Air Combat Environment software. MACE provides the A-10 FMT simulator increased training realism with greater ability to control the environmental conditions, generate realistic electronic warfare scenarios and equipment, manage imagery and map data, and control ground forces. Ten sites have one or more MetaVR-based A-10 FMT simulators: Baltimore Air National Guard Base (ANGB), Md., Barksdale Air Force Base (AFB), 2 | MTI 21.3
La., Boise ANGB at Gowan Field, Idaho, DavisMonthan AFB, Ariz., Fort Smith ANGB, Ark., Fort Wayne ANGB, Ind., Moody AFB, Ga., Osan AB, Korea, Selfridge ANGB, Mich., and Whiteman AFB, Mont. CymSTAR is the primary systems integrator responsible for maintaining and extending the A-10 FMT simulators.
Training Suite for KC-390
Brazil’s Embraer has contracted with Rheinmetall to develop and supply a full suite of training equipment for the new Embraer KC-390 transport plane. A framework agreement to this effect has just been signed. For Rheinmetall, the program should mean sales of well over roughly $112.9 million spread out over the next 10 to 15 years. Rheinmetall’s Simulation and Training business unit will design, manufacture, deliver and support all training devices for Embraer’s revolutionary new KC-390 aircraft, including cargo handling, procedure and maintenance trainers as well as flight and mission training systems, including full mission and flight simulators. Rheinmetall will provide proven, innovative simulation technology for future KC-390 pilots, mission crew, loadmasters and maintainers. “Rheinmetall is honored to have been selected as the training devices partner in the KC-390 program,” declared Ulrich Sasse, president of Rheinmetall’s simulation and training business unit. “It’s exciting to be able to demonstrate our commitment to Embraer and the entire KC-390 program by providing proven, state-of-the-art simulation technology from Germany.” “We look forward to building on our recent fruitful cooperation with Rheinmetall and are confident that our partnership will result in a first-class KC-390 Training Media Suite that will definitely contribute to the overall success of the KC-390 program,” stated Jackson Schneider, president and CEO of Embraer Defense & Security.
New Zealand Opens New SAS Training Facility The New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) new Battle Training Facility (BTF) was officially
opened on April 8 by the Prime Minister, Rt Honourable John Key at a ceremony in Auckland. The roughly $31.8 million modern purpose-built facility in Ardmore took two years to build and replaces outdated and obsolete training facilities for Special Air Service (SAS) personnel in Papakura. It includes facilities for all-weather training, live firing, use of helicopters, and scenario training based on specific environments and structures such as, aircraft fuselages, ship’s bridges, and public transport. In the previous facilities SAS personnel could not fire their primary operational weapons, however, the new BTF allows for live firing and up to advanced full-mission rehearsals. Chief of Defence Force, Lieutenant General Tim Keating, said the BTF will primarily be used by the SAS, however, it is an important resource for the whole of NZDF. “Security threats have become more complex, so it’s vital the NZDF have modern facilities to train SAS personnel who are required to operate in high risk and complex environments.” The BTF will also be used by other government agencies with a security role, including the NZ Police Special Tactics Group. “This is a capability that is of significant benefit to the whole of the NZDF and it is futureproofed in its design and built to a world class standard.”
Laser Guided Training Round
Lockheed Martin recently delivered the 150,000th Enhanced Laser Guided Training Round (ELGTR), which gives warfighters the only live-fire laser-guided bomb (LGB) training solution available worldwide. “We continuously refine our production capability to accommodate increased demand, improve lead times and reduce overall system cost,” said Joe Serra, precision-guided systems director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Our manufacturing team is committed to delivering the highest quality, most effective and affordable LGB training system to our warfighters so they are able to maintain peak combat readiness.” www.MTI-dhp.com
SaaB JOINING FORCES WITH INTEROPERABLE TRAINING Ad NEW MEMBER
MEMBERS IN THE INTEROPERABILITY USER COMMUNITY (IUC) The reality of multi-national and coalition operations means that training across international borders will become increasingly common. The IUC-family of countries will soon have the same laser codes for their firing and target simulators, as well as possessing player instrumentation and exercise command and control systems that are built on the same platform. At Saab, we see the need for interoperability between armies becoming more and more important. Our common platforms and interoperable solutions enable joint international training in diverse environments with the opportunity to exchange national tactics, doctrine and best practice in order to deliver operational effectiveness. This presents a unique opportunity to NATO forces, Partnership for Peace and Coalition Partners to train together by combining systems to create a fully instrumented training environment in any configuration, scale and at any given location. www.saab.com
• Instrumentation • Firing / Target Systems • Exercise Control
Program Highlights ELGTR accurately replicates the key performance and laser-engagement requirements of Paveway II laser-guided weapon systems to provide the warfighter with the employment and operational capability of the LGB, while preserving tactical weapons inventory and effectively reducing overall training cost. ELGTR is compatible with F/A-18, AV-8B, F-16 and various international aircraft platforms.
The Future of Navy Combat Training?
sailors manning a virtual ship were pitted against several fast-attack craft in waters crowded with merchant traffic. They quickly determined the boats to be hostile and engaged them with machine-gun fire from both the ship and a virtual helicopter. Currently, FIST2FAC is shore based, but one day White wants to make the capabilities developed there available to ships at sea, he said. “The ultimate goal is to wrap a destroyer in an augmented world where everyone throughout the ship can see virtual vessels, aircraft and adversaries and train to respond appropriately,” White said. As reported by Warren Duffie
The building has also been constructed with minimal environmental impact, including energy self-sufficiency through 100 rooftop photovoltaic panels. The operation of the training facility makes the continuation of a long association between Navy and the Randwick community dating back almost half a century, including the former Naval Stores Depot and Endeavour House accommodation precinct.
German Rotational Forces Begin Training in Lithuania
New Australian Navy Training Systems Centre
On April 11, the Office of Naval Research, with support from members of its Reserve Component, demonstrated new and improved training technology at the Fleet Integrated Synthetic Training/Testing Facility (FIST2FAC) on Ford Island, Hawaii. FIST2FAC develops, tests, and demonstrates simulator training technology blending live-action exercises with virtual assets and adversaries. “This is the future of training for the Navy,” said Terry Allard, head of ONR’s Warfighter Performance Department. “With simulation, you can explore endless possibilities without the expense and logistical challenges of putting hundreds of ships at sea and aircraft in the sky.” FIST2FAC combines a hassle-free setup, software and gaming technology to help naval forces develop strategies for diverse missions and operations. It allows sailors to interact with artificially intelligent forces in countless virtual settings—and train for multiple missions simultaneously. The system can replicate situations involving aircraft carriers, helicopters (in this case, a squadron from Marine Corps Base Hawaii), lethal and non-lethal weapons and more. “FIST2FAC was created in response to an urgent need for a more portable way for ships to train in any given operating area,” said Glenn White, ONR’s integration and transition manager for the project. “It allows sailors to ‘train like they fight’ by presenting realistic forces in a visual, tactical and operational environment.” During the demonstration on Ford Island, 4 | MTI 21.3
A state-of-the-art simulation facility has been opened in Sydney today that will enhance training for Royal Australian Navy technical sailors. Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, AO, CSC, RAN, officially opened the $90 million Navy Training Systems Centre at Randwick Barracks, and said the purpose-built facility would revolutionize how the Navy prepares Marine and Electronic Technicians for their roles in the Fleet. “This next generation training facility will ensure Navy can fully utilize the extraordinary capabilities of both the Canberra class amphibious ships and the Hobart class destroyers,” Vice Admiral Barrett said. When fully operational, the center will be able to train up to 300 students at a time, using a combination of simulation and modern training systems. Vice Admiral Barrett said the use of simulation and task specific training tools would reduce Navy’s need to conduct elements of training at sea, allowing more sea days for advanced group training and to support government directed operations. “Our new amphibious ships and destroyers will be serving Australia’s national interests for the next three decades, which is why this center will play a vital role underpinning the successful operation of these assets. “I anticipate an expanded use of these types of facilities in the future, as they provide Navy with an essential capability at a lower total cost over the life of ships,” Barrett said. Recognizing that Navy’s training needs will evolve the facility has been designed and constructed to be reconfigured for future training needs and additional platforms.
On April 11, soldiers of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Algirdas Mechanised Infantry Battalion and their counterparts of the German rotational forces familiarized with each other’s equipment and weaponry and Lithuanian troops showed the Germans around the location of their deployment and service in Lithuania. The German training was expected to start within a few days and continue until sometime in July 2016. Throughout the rotation Germans will mainly train alongside soldiers of the Algirdas Battalion. The training will include individual training, live fire, operational planning, operation in urban and forested areas, offensive, defensive and other tasks. The reconnaissance platoon of the 291st Infantry Battalion will train performing reconnaissance assignments while heavy weaponry platoon will attend Exercise Hunter 2016 for anti-tank units in Pabradė. Field training exercise Iron Wolf 2016 Lithuania in June will be the main phase of the German training in Lithuania. The current German rotation is planned to be replaced with an artillery unit in July.
ATS II Bridge PoP Extension The Army recently confirmed its requirement to procure live-fire training ranges to be installed under the Army Targetry System (ATS) II program. These ranges will be utilized to conduct live-fire training by U.S. forces and/ www.MTI-dhp.com
Program Highlights or its allies for the purpose of developing and improving their combat skills when they are called upon to conduct military exercises and/ or participate in actual combat actions against opposing forces. This training is accomplished in various geographical locations throughout the world and in all extremes of environment. Within the scope of the contract is for the contractor(s) to provide moving infantry targets (MITs), moving armor target, stationary infantry targets, and stationary armor target (SATs), along with the capability to provide the spare parts associated with each targetry device. Under existing contract authority, the Army intended to issue a modification to the contracts and contractors to add a 16 month ordering period to the Army Targetry System (ATS) II program in order allow additional time to award the competitive follow-on ATS III contract: Contracts were expected to be awarded to: Lockheed Martin Corporation - Global Training and Logistics; Meggitt Training Systems, Inc.; Strategic Systems, Inc.; and Saab Training USA LLC.
Military Vehicle Driving Simulator
Indra has launched an innovative driving simulator for 4-wheel drive military vehicles which has been designed to standardize the training of armed forces personnel and reduce the number of accidents and collisions. The company has already delivered the first two simulators to the Spanish military. Located at the National Training Center of San Gregorio in Zaragoza, each system is adapted for driving training in both the RG-31 Nyala vehicle manufactured by BAE Systems and Iveco’s LMV. Using the cab exchange system (roll in/roll out), the simulators adapt quickly and easily to recreate driving conditions in both types of vehicle. The system reproduces the actual cab fitted on a platform that provides motion. Inside, the visual system reproduces the different driving scenarios and sound effects of the surrounding area. It can also be networked using an HLA connection for participating in joint virtual exercises, interacting with other simulators located at other bases. From the instructor’s position, www.MTI-dhp.com
a monitor sets the exercise conditions and assesses the driver’s performance, which can be recorded for subsequent analysis. Indra’s driving simulators enable all kinds of exercises to be conducted, setting different tactical objectives and recreating a wide variety of scenarios—deserts, countryside, mountain roads, cities, bridges, two-way roads, highways—as well as different weather and traffic conditions and surfaces—dust, mud, ice, etc. They also provide training on overcoming obstacles and ramps with different gradients, the use of the so-called Roller equipment, which is used for crossing minefields, and driving while wearing night-vision goggles, among other possibilities.
Army Learning Model in Action at Regional Training Site Specialist Abraham Keith had never considered himself much of a mechanic before he arrived at Regional Training Site Maintenance (RTSM)-Fort Devens, Mass. The Reserve soldier works as a cook in his civilian life, so in his hometown of Birmingham, Ala., he spends more time fixing meals instead of cars. Keith attended the 80th Training Command’s Wheeled Vehicle Mechanic Course at RTSMDevens, and by the final week of the first phase, he was taking apart the engine block of a Humvee along with his fellow students. The three-week course teaches students the basics of maintaining and repairing four-wheeled military vehicles like Humvees and mine-resistant ambush protected vehicles. “At first, I couldn’t get it,” said Kieth, who’s currently assigned to the 318th Chemical Company. “It was new to me. I just felt like, aw man, I’m not going to be able to do this.” Keith learned his new mechanical skills with assistance from other students and by staying late with his instructors. “I was paired with people that knew [mechanics] and it just really helped,” he said. The concept of incorporating students’ knowledge, skills, and experiences in the classroom stems from the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command’s 2015 Army Learning Model. The ALM reduces instructor-led slide presentations for a more facilitative approach designed for adult students. “He’s learning more every day,” said Sergeant 1st Class Jorge Gonzalez, a course instructor. “His teammates, his classmates the students themselves are actually teaching him.”
Gonzales said, he believes that instructors and students both sharing their experiences provide a vibrant atmosphere of learning. Teaching others gets rid of fear, which makes an individual a stronger person, and a stronger non-commissioned officer, he added. Keith said, learning to not to doubt himself was the most important lesson he learned at RTSM-Devens. “If you think that’s it, [then] say it,” Keith said. “If it’s not, then they’re here to help you because you are here to learn.” As reported by Master Sergeant Benari Poulten
Training at Kenya Military Academy
Kenya Defence Forces cadets undertake their training at the Kenya Military Academy (KMA), formerly known as Armed Forces Training College (AFTC). Cadet training encompasses theoretical, physical and mental training for selected personnel who are commissioned as officers of the Kenya Defence Forces. The senior most intake for general service officers (GSO) cadets “KMA 04” who are scheduled to commission on September 2016 are currently undertaking vigorous field training exercises. The cadets undertake various training exercises to sharpen their military skills in order to undertake any task assigned to them as young officers upon completion of their training.
Polish F-16 Trainer Support Contract On April 7, L-3 Link Simulation & Training (L-3 Link) announced it has been awarded the F-16 Trainer Support contract from the Polish Ministry of National Defence Support Directorate. This contract, which has a period of performance that concludes the fourth quarter of 2018, includes maintenance, repairs, spares, modifications and technical assistance. Its value is dependent on future task orders issued by the Polish Air Force. MTI 21.3 | 5
Program Highlights Under the indefinite-delivery/indefinitequantity contract, L-3 Link will support all training devices it has delivered over the past decade to the Polish Air Force for its F-16 Aircrew Training System (ATS) program. These support efforts will include updates and modifications to F-16 ATS devices, ensuring the training systems remain concurrent with platform changes and addressing system
obsolescence issues. The F-16 ATS comprises one F-16C/D Block 52 Full Mission Trainer, two squadron-level trainers, instructor operator stations and computational systems. F-16 ATS training devices are installed at Poland’s Krzesiny Air Base and Lask Air Base. “The Polish F-16 Aircrew Training System was designed from the outset to maintain concurrency with the advanced capabilities
of the F-16C/D Block 52 aircraft,” said Lenny Genna, president of L-3 Link. “As the original equipment manufacturer for these training devices, L-3 Link is uniquely capable of making updates that will improve training effectiveness and efficiency. We look forward to continuing to work with the Polish Air Force and the Polish Ministry of National Defence to maximize F-16 pilot training capabilities.”
PEOPLE Navy Reserve Captain Mary C. Riggs has been nominated for appointment to the rank of rear admiral (lower half). Riggs is currently serving as deputy chief of staff, Navy Reserve, Navy Medicine Education and Training Command, Jacksonville, Fla. Colonel Andrea D. Tullos, who has been selected to the grade of brigadier general, from commander, 42nd Air Base Wing, Air Education and Training Command, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., has been assigned as the director of security forces,
deputy chief of staff for logistics, engineering and force protection, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
Major General Roger L. Cloutier Jr., commanding general, U.S. Army Training Center and Fort Jackson, Fort Jackson, S.C., has been assigned as chief of staff, U.S. Africa Command, Germany.
Your Worldwide Training Partner of Choice 6 | MTI 21.3
Brigadier General Christopher G. Cavoli, commanding general, Joint Multinational Training Command, U.S. Army Europe, Germany, has been assigned as commanding general, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. Brigadier General Christopher E. Craige, commanding general,
Train, Advise, Assist Command – Air, Operation Resolute Support, U.S. Central Command; and commander, 438th Air Expeditionary Wing, Air Combat Command, Kabul, Afghanistan, has been assigned as vice commander, 3rd Air Force, U.S. Air Forces in Europe, and 17th Expeditionary Air Force, U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Ramstein Air Base, Germany.
On April 3, the 102nd Training Division said farewell to Brigadier John Elam and Command Sergeant Major John Stumph and welcomed Brigadier General Miyako Schanely (right in photo) and Command Sergeant Major Robert Provost.
firstname.lastname@example.org cae.com @CAE_Defence
Captain Erik “Rock” Etz Commander Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division
Captain Erik “Rock” Etz was commissioned through the Naval ROTC program in 1990 upon earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. He was designated a naval aviator in 1993 and joined the Marauders of VFA-82 in August 1994, flying the F/A-18C Hornet. During this tour, he completed one Mediterranean deployment on USS America, flying missions in support of United Nations Operations Deliberate Force, Deny Flight, and Decisive Edge in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Operation Southern Watch in Iraq. Etz graduated from the U.S. Navy Test Pilot School, Class 113, in June 1998. At Naval Strike Aircraft Test Squadron, Patuxent River, Md., he flew test missions in all areas of flight test for F/A-18A-F and T45A/C aircraft and was assigned as Project Officer for the F/A-18E/F Third Sea Trials, leading a government and contractor team responsible for shipboard Super Hornet lateral asymmetry and degraded flight control launch and recovery testing, and ACLS certification. www.MTI-dhp.com
Etz returned to the fleet in December 2000 as senior landing signal officer and safety officer on the staff of commander, Carrier Air Wing Nine. Following the events of September 11th, 2001, he deployed onboard USS Stennis to the North Arabian Sea for seven months. Under his guidance, CVW-9 amassed over 10,000 arrested landings during combat operations. Captain Etz also executed F/A-18C combat missions in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Remaining in Carrier Air Wing Nine, He was assigned to the VFA-147 Argonauts for his department head tour in July 2002, during which he served as operations officer and maintenance officer. Etz completed an 8-month Western Pacific deployment aboard the USS Vinson in 2003, supporting operations in the region of the Korean peninsula. Etz returned to NAS Patuxent River in June 2004, upon assignment to the Salty Dogs of VX-23. As the ship suitability department head, he was responsible for oversight of the safe and efficient flight test of all tactical aircraft in the regimes of shipboard launch and recovery. He flew F/A-18A-F and T-45A/C aircraft on multiple test programs. Etz joined VFA-113 in December 2006 as the executive officer, again flying the F/A-18C Hornet, and in early 2007, the Stingers executed a short-notice surge deployment to the western Pacific with Carrier Air Wing Fourteen onboard USS Reagan. In May 2008, He assumed command of VFA-113, and led the Stingers in combat operations from the USS Reagan, supporting coalition forces in Afghanistan on two deployments in 2008 and 2009. From September 2009 through October 2011, Etz was assigned as the deputy lead for the F-35 Mission Systems Integrated Product Team with the Joint Strike Fighter Program Office. His dispersed team developed the sensor and software systems that provide the warfighting capabilities of all F-35 variants. Executing a third test pilot tour, Captain Etz returned to NAS Patuxent River in October 2011as the director, test & evaluation of F-35 naval variants at VX-23. In this role, he served as the senior military lead for the F-35 Integrated Test Force, charged with developmental flight test of the STOVL and CV variants of the F-35, and he flew F/A-18 aircraft in support roles. In June 2014, Etz assumed the duties as executive officer of NAWCTSD, Orlando, Fla. Etz has logged over 3,500 flight hours in over 35 types of aircraft, including over 2,950 F/A-18 hours and over 840 carrier landings on 14 different aircraft carriers. His decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, two Meritorious Service Medals, three Air Medals (Strike/ Flight), three Navy Commendation Medals, the Navy Achievement Medal, and various unit and service awards. Q: How much of your budget is procurement, R&D or O&M? Does your FY17 request fund you to levels that allow you to fulfill your mission obligations or will you have to look at program structure and timing to be able to fit everything in during the budget cycle? Any examples you can give of specific programs or system acquisition? A: Fortunately, NAWCTSD is a Navy working capital fund (NWCF) activity, which means each of our projects is funded by the requesting project sponsor. At this time all of our projects are fully funded and we fully expect to meet our mission obligations. For those who may not know, the NWCF resembles a corporate finance model where our Navy “customers” send us funded orders, and we provide our products and services in return. However, unlike commercial businesses, NAWCTSD strives to break even rather than make a profit. MTI 21.3 | 7
Whoâ€™s Who at Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division SENIOR LEADERSHIP
Capt. Erik Etz Commanding Officer
John Meyers Technical Director/ Director for the Naval Air Systems Command Human Systems Department
Timothy Cichon Director of Contracts
Maynard Zettler Director of Research and Engineering
Carl Lee Director of Test and Evaluation
Maureen Bergondy-Wilhelm Director of Research and Technology Programs
8 | MTI 21.3
Brian Hicks Director of Aviation Programs
Military Training International
Capt. Timothy Hill Prospective Executive Officer (arrives June 2016)
Rob Matthews Deputy Technical Director/Director of Program Management
Capt. Jiancarlo Villa Chief of Staff/Military Deputy for Program Management
Bradley Ehrhardt Director of Logistics
John Daly Director of Corporate Operations
Suzanne Cormier-Livesay Comptroller
Paul Honold Director of Surface and Undersea Programs
Aida Matta Director of International Programs
Michael Merritt Director of Cross-Warfare Programs
Lisa Daniel Wentz Counsel
MTIâ€ˆ21.3 | 9
Q&A Q: You recently assumed command at NAWCTSD. What has been your commander’s guidance and what do you see as your driving initiatives? A: Improving the way we operate as a team to more effectively serve the fleet is my driving priority. Following the lead of NAVAIR, we will continue to align our resources to improve our effectiveness, and actively pursue opportunities to reduce cost and increase the speed of capability delivery to the Fleet. We have a number of ongoing initiatives that target our own internal processes, in an effort to create capacity for new work by streamlining our acquisition efforts. By supporting fleet training needs across all Navy warfighting areas, we are uniquely positioned to leverage technology across multiple platforms. We will use that insight to look for opportunities to horizontally flow capability across platforms, and pursue distributed training results that yield a virtual environment where interconnected training devices provide the fleet with the opportunity to train like we fight. Q: Are there any simulation and training technologies where you see great promise in creating better training results, increased efficiency and lower costs? A: Yes. I would argue that promise exists to some extent in each of our products. It certainly is our goal to deliver training products that maximize human performance, safely and affordably. One great example of one of our products delivering better training results, efficiently and affordably is our Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training System (MRTS) 3D. This family of trainers was developed in-house in our Undersea Warfare Program Directorate initially to provide training in submarine radio rooms and weapons launch procedures, but its use has expanded to include training on a variety of systems including a mobile electric power plant used in aviation. Our team found that by using commercial off-the-shelf computers and touch screen monitors, along with a freely available computer gaming engine, they were able to provide very high quality virtual replicas a variety of equipment at a small fraction of the cost of building trainers using tactical equipment. A single MRTS 3D hardware trainer can shift between the multiple software simulation applications within minutes. This capability enables a training command to use a single hardware device to give photo-realistic, virtual training on a variety of different systems. Q: What is the status of the training systems and devices for the Navy and Marine Corps F-35? Can you talk about the walk-up to where you are today in planning the processes and systems for a new aircraft coming online? A: NAWCTSD is honored to be a part the F-35 program via our support of the F-35 Joint Program Office. The training systems that have been delivered are meeting the needs of the U.S. military services and partner nations as the F-35 program continues on the path to USAF and USN initial operating capability, following the declaration of USMC initial operational capability last year. Having fulfilled duties on the F-35 program in previous Navy assignments, I am excited to remain engaged with the program here at NAWCTSD, 10 | MTI 21.3
and support of the F-35 program will always be a priority for us. F-35 is a driving force for networked operations, and the partnerships on the program represent an opportunity for the U.S. services and coalition partners to jointly pursue effective training solutions for decades to come. Q: The Army just released a white paper on Enhancing Realistic Training in which the commander of the Combined Arms Center said that current Army training “is not realistic, demanding nor challenging enough to properly prepare our forces to improve and thrive in ambiguity and chaos.” When looking at the training regimes and systems you are responsible for, how do they measure on the realism scale? Where will improvements come from? A: I cannot speak to the Army’s training needs, but when it comes to developing training systems for the Navy, our priority is to train sailors to meet specific learning objectives. Not all training requires full realism to train a task. In many instances a part-task trainer is more than enough to help someone learn a new task, or familiarize them with equipment that is new to them. Other times, more fidelity and realism is needed, and we certainly have trainers that offer a great deal of fidelity, but they typically cost more, and take longer develop. And of course sometimes, there’s just no substitute for live training while flying real aircraft and taking ships to sea. It’s important for us to have the right mix of training, delivered at the right time to optimize learning. The key here is to have experts in the science of learning involved in the development of training solutions so our sailors get the right amount of fidelity to learn, without wasting our resources developing devices that exceed the training requirement. As far as improving realism goes, with every passing year, there are remarkable improvements in available technology. Things that were technically impossible five or ten years ago are now becoming viable options. For example we are currently exploring the idea employing augmented reality and virtual reality technologies to add realism to training. Q: Tell me about the Ready, Relevant Learning concept. A: Ready, Relevant Learning is a pillar of the Sailor 2025 initiative that will provide a learning continuum approach to the training of Navy sailors. Broadly, RRL will look at improving the efficiency of Navy training to more appropriately meet fleet needs for training, including when and where the sailor is engaged in that training. Starting with fleet readiness as the priority, there will be opportunities to incorporate new technologies to improve training effectiveness, and ways to support the delivery of that training across multiple media elements. Q: In addition to honing technical capabilities, you also work on the decision-making and reasoning skills. Tell me how you go about building the overall individual? A: At NAWCTSD we have a Training Analysis, Design, and Evaluation Division that specializes in analyzing human performance requirements and subsequently, defining alternative strategies and solutions for meeting those www.MTI-dhp.com
Q&A requirements. Central to the training of decision making, and other highly cognitive skills, is the need to break down tasks to individual parts—the hardware or software with which the trainee must interact, the nature of the task and the significance of the information presented to them, how fluctuations in the environment affect the task (e.g., workload, ambiguity), the decision making process itself, and the teammates with whom they work. This is done through a series of task analyses, including cognitive task analysis, where analysts work with subject matter aspects to represent the cognitive activities used to perform tasks such as decision-making, problemsolving, etc. Q: In honing decision making skills, it is critical for learners to have repeated practice opportunities? A: This is important in several aspects. First, repeated practice is critical in developing the basic “button pushing” operations that are required. During time constrained or any stressful condition, an individual’s performance will suffer if they haven’t fully learned the system they are working on. Second, repeated practice provides opportunities to experience a wide variety of circumstances that could arise during performance. Experience gained during that training supports the development of decision-making skills by learning to recognize situations and understanding how decisions made influence performance outcomes. Finally, a key point in any training strategy is creating a performance measurement system to describe, diagnose, and evaluate processes that lead to effective outcomes. Q: Operations are not always just a Navy affair—or any single service— how can NAWCTSD better prepare itself to train jointly? A: The NAWCTSD team fully realizes we need to train like we fight, and when we execute combat operations globally, we do so in a joint environment, fighting alongside our coalition partners. As a long-time F/A-18 pilot, I had the honor of executing operations in a number of theaters, and I expect that we will continue to support attributes of training systems that support future networked training opportunities across service and national boundaries. That type of activity is not without challenges, however, we have a team that has significant experience in supporting large scale integrated training events, and we plan to keep them busy! Q: Tell me about the Small Business Information Forum Initiative. How do these events benefit the command and the training and simulation industry? A: The Small Business Information Forum Initiative (SBIFI) is a quarterly event that provides a venue for exchange of meaningful and timely information between Team Orlando and industry, specifically concentrating on a variety of issues that have value to the small business community. Previous SBIFI events have provided the opportunity for the small business industry to hear directly from Team Orlando senior leaders as to how the small business community may be able to assist in achieving organizational objectives and missions and insight into technologies sought after in the NAWCTSD and PEO STRI portfolios. www.MTI-dhp.com
Some SBIFI events have provided more targeted information aimed to assist in identifying resources available to support successful business operations, such as no-cost or low-cost human resources functions. These events take place on the 2nd Tuesday of every other month from 10:15-11:15 in the UCF Partnership III Building. Topics are announced in advance via posting to Federal Business Opportunities portal at www.fbo.gov Q: Is there a use for additive manufacturing with the naval aviation training environment? A: Absolutely! Additive manufacturing’s (AM) traditional strengths of flexibility and responsiveness, yielding high speed to prototype and lower non-recurring engineering costs, are extremely useful in the development of training systems. Furthermore, the barriers AM has encountered entering other areas of the Naval Aviation Enterprise, most notably a loss of economy of scale and variation in material properties leading to questions regarding airworthiness certification for AM parts, don’t generally impact its use in training systems. In fact, NAWCTSD has an in-house advanced plastic AM capability that is ideally suited to its rapid prototyping mission. Parts that may have taken days or weeks to make by traditional manufacturing methods can now be built and tested within hours with AM. In cases where the AM materials are suitable to the training environment the AM part becomes the delivered part, removing the final production step entirely. Q: Last year, NAWCTSD was recognized by a local Orlando newspaper as being a top company for working families—in fact listed in the top 10. Taking care of people is a great way to improve productivity and retain the skilled technicians you need. First, what are you doing that has given you this recognition and is there a way you can measure what this means to the command in terms of dollars and cents. A: I am proud that NAWCTSD has earned a place on the Orlando Sentinel’s annual list of “Top 100 Companies for Working Families” for nine years in a row. Last year we were ranked fifth among all workplaces in central Florida. By any measure that’s an impressive accomplishment. The secret to our success is really no secret at all. It’s as simple as doing everything we can to ensure our employees—we prefer to call them teammates—know that what they do is important, and that we care about them. We do things for our teammates that cost the taxpayers nothing, but pay huge dividends in increased productivity and retention. While it’s hard to quantify the benefits in terms of dollars and cents, I can tell you that for every employee who chooses to continue working at NAWCTSD, we save on the intangible costs of bringing a new employee up to speed. There is simply no way to but a value on a teammate with a wealth of knowledge and experience. To put it simply, this is a place where by and large people are happy to work. For example, every quarter we take time to celebrate our teammates’ accomplishments, and it is very common for us to celebrate employees with 30, 35, 40 or more years of service. In fact just last year we had an employee who somewhat reluctantly chose to retire after more than 50 years of service—all of it right here on our team. I could not think of a better place to work, and I’m proud and honored to have the privilege of leading such an amazing team. MTI 21.3 | 11
International Vector An Exclusive Military Training International Q&A with
Air Vice-Marshal Andrew Turner Commander AOC 22 Group and Chief of Staff, Headquarters Royal Air Force, United Kingdom
Q: How is your organization structured and what is its budget? Turner: No 22 Group is structured well for its role. It has a unified HQ near London of around 30 personnel and runs or looks after: 40,000 air cadets, 11,000 adult volunteers, 5000 staff, around 60,000 students per annum and about 550 aircraft; of these students about 40,000 are from the Royal Navy and British Army (Defence). At the bottom of the age range the Group inspires the next generation with flying lessons, aerodynamic instruction and air power theory and gives a diverse cadre of British youth the best possible start in life—values, standards, ethics and the spirit of aviation. The Group also does all recruiting, testing and selection for the RAF and initial/basic training. Currently training for officers and airmen is split between two sites, but this will be co-located under Programme Portal (a famous WWII air chief marshal) at the RAF College at
Cranwell. We also deliver all technical training to Defence—aeronautical, communications, electro-mechancal, marine and nuclear training through life. On top of this the Group does all Defence’s flying training—fast jet, multi-engine, rotary and unmanned aircraft—and survival, evasion, resistance and escape training. We deliver all RAF leadership, command and management training—from age 12 to the air chief and everyone between. Finally, the Group parents all RAF sport—a critical part of our means of generating agile, intellectual combat power, the means of taking bold calibrated risk and an opportunity for individuals and groups to succeed in combat-like conditions. You probe on finance and yes this has shrunk dramatically over these last 20 years. Firstly, we are one third the size compared to when I joined in 1985, but this last Defence Review signaled the first growth since May 1945 and so this trend has been arrested. Secondly, much of our training has become far more taut as we have grown to understand more clearly what the cost of training is. This has led to the removal of what we no longer need to do (waste), transfer skills we no longer need to hold within the service to contracts (dis-invest) and we have brought a range of modern learning techniques and technology (upgrade) to meet the expectations of the latest generation of servicemen. We get to test this on the so-called Generation Z who fill our air cadet organization today, which helps shape what we are doing and gently nudges those close to committing to a career in uniform. Overall, a decreasing budget has been a positive marker of material progress and it feels like it is a statement of both modernity and progress. Q: How are you doing on recruiting?
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Turner: Recruiting is tough, but we are doing OK. The ‘market’ has changed a lot in the last 30 years and, whilst the RAF has become substantially smaller, there remains a strong flow of young people that want to join the popular careers like administration, flight operations, pilots and aircrew; our slight shrinkage has allowed us to become more selective. In other areas, especially STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), there is a net national deficit and so we struggle as everyone else is. We are attempting to overcome this through sharper links into UK schools and the tech universities, an expanded series of bursaries for selected individuals and a deeper connection into the air cadets. But the market has changed. Now our youth are more exacting, they are just as interested in pay, pension and housing entitlements as the career itself—I am not sure I could spell those in 1985! We also need to become (even) more representative of society—we need more ladies and more people from the wider and diverse UK ethnic cross-section; again no small task, but we simply have to do better here. Q: Tell me about the new flying training contract. Turner: We committed to contract in February on the latest phase of re-commissioning our flying training system. This started a few years ago with the replacement of our Hawks at RAF Valley and will now be followed up with a new elementary, basic and multi-engine trainers—the Grob120TP, Texan T-6C and Embraer Phenom100 respectively. Importantly, these new aircraft will come with a whole new training system and ground-based training aids that will allow a far greater weight of download to the lowest level, a much higher cross-load onto synthetics and even more off-load to contractors. In fact our training service provider, Ascent Flight Training (a Lockheed-Martin/Babcock consortium) will deliver much of the management of the new technology and take most of the financial risks on. But this is a really big deal, the latest contract is for £1.1 billion ($1.55 billion) and is part of a total package that is around £3.8 billion ($5.37 billion) that will take UK flying training out to 2033. Q: How do you use synthetics and could you do more in this area? Turner: Quite simply, we don’t use the synthetic environment enough. Whilst live training absolutely has its place and is most important at the origin of flight training where every pilot needs to sense true jeopardy like I did on my first solo, we could apply the concepts more aggressively and completely across the enterprise. Beyond jeopardy, live training has real value in generating the physiology needed at the ‘merge’ and experiencing the unpredictable nature of communication links and the live and dynamic nature of the air traffic and fighter control worlds. However, with the sensitive nature of our modern aircraft, the paucity of flight hours and the return on investment www.MTI-dhp.com
Air Vice-Marshal Turner was born in 1967 and commissioned into the Royal Air Force in 1985. He is currently AOC 22 (Training) Group and COS (Training) at Headquarters Air Command. He was educated at Kingswood School in Bath, the RAF Colleges Cranwell and Bracknell, the Indian Staff College, the UK Higher Command and Staff College, the Royal College of Defence Studies and the UK Pinnacle and US Capstone courses. He has studied at Oxford, Exeter, Kings College London, Madras and the Open Universities earning Masters in International Relations and Strategic Studies and a Bachelor’s degree in Oceanography and Cosmology. A helicopter pilot with 5,000 flying hours, he has flown 1,850 of those on 19 operational tours in Northern Ireland, Central America, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Kuwait, Bosnia, Kosovo, Albania and Afghanistan. He has commanded 28 (AC) Squadron, RAF Odiham, the UK Merlin and UK Chinook Forces, the Special Forces Aviation Wing, the Puma Force in Kosovo, Merlin Force in Iraq and the Chinook, Apache, Lynx and Sea King Forces in Afghanistan. Para trained, he has completed staff appointments in the UK Ministry of Defence in planning, operations and media directorates, PJHQ as the head of military planning, Washington as CDS’ liaison officer and in brigade, division and corps headquarters. He was appointed as an Officer in the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2006 Birthday Honours “in recognition of distinguished services in the Ministry of Defence in support of operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and in home waters”. He was promoted to Commander within the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2010 Birthday Honours “in recognition of distinguished and gallant service in command of RAF Odiham and in Afghanistan during the period 21 November 2007 to 22 November 2009.”
politicians and the public will expect, we need to think differently and start from a ‘why not in the sim’ philosophy. Of course this isn’t a charter for less live flying, it is a charter for a greater proportion of live flying time to be on operational sorties because MTI 21.3 | 13
the synthetic environment is more replicative of the real world and has been able to generate the necessary airborne competencies. There are some key technological shortfalls that are holding us back for now—truly immersive synthetics that seduce you into the mission where you are not jarred back to reality by juddering graphics, bandits appearing only at the graphic seams, rotating trees or obstructions you can simply fly through.
Overall, we should begin to look at the synthetic environment as the optimum place to generate top-end collective capability. Here we can run drill after drill in the quiet and technologically-secure training space to grow leadership at every level of the force. Also, we need to develop a fully connected crew training device - linking the cockpit to the cabin in a Shadow, Sentry, Merlin, Chinook and in certain cases a C-130J will all become essential in the near years. These gaps will inevitably be closed by clever software engineers, but we are in danger of being constrained by old school thinking and/or our own imagination. Q: What is your view on LVC? Turner: We are on the journey—probably only half-way there—on L and V, but we need to do far more on C. On the LV balance we need to make more rapid progress on linking these two together to allow fully collaborative missions to be developed and to maximize sortie preparation should there be aircraft technical problems—if you’re walking for a sortie, it should be invisible as to whether it is an aircraft or simulator and we must be able to chop and change almost at the outbrief. Technology again will plug some gaps here: we would need some helmet-sight symbology to represent visual contacts at close-ish range, data links to allow synthetic devices to connect to the live network and a change in philosophy to embrace this approach, although I suspect the younger generation would be unfazed by this. But this is coming anyway, as we engage with systems like Lightning II, P-8A and Protector—not only will live flying be precious, we may also
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want to shield visual signatures, operational procedures or the nature of our readiness. We have had deployable synthetics with Apache since its initial acquisition, these are coming with Lightning II and will need to increasingly be a feature of our system of systems approach into the future. Furthermore, on the constructive dynamic—we do very little development at the operational level, either for individuals or organizations. We still rely heavily on the ‘crowning moment’ of a big live fly exercise, but these are often thwarted by real world considerations—exercise time-lines, a pre-cooked main events list, fluctuating participants and limited training space. Not so in a synthetic setting, where events can be run and re-run to generate training objectives and competencies at a commander’s will. A further predictable challenge is that we will increasingly want to dominate the electromagnetic and electronic warfare spectrums, which is probably highly unlikely across most of the developed World...except in a simulator. Furthermore, if poised on a maritime platform, like the Queen Elizabeth Class carriers in the very near future, it would add enormous value to mission rehearse with all participants effectively in a synthetic setting. Not only would this allow collective challenges to be identified and mitigated, but also over-land skill sets and target attack dynamics can be practiced at will; operational terminal attack geometry is difficult to rehearse in the live environment! This will do much for our ‘generating the Air General’ strand of thinking. Commanders who think, act and are tested at the operational level is the way to fully extract the full value of 5th generation air power. Overall, we should begin to look at the synthetic environment as the optimum place to generate top-end collective capability. Here we can run www.MTI-dhp.com
There is much more to be done here, where getting onto the grid is a good start point, but there is a growing collective consensus on what should be done. Q: What’s on your immediate horizon, what are your next challenges? Turner: We have a lot on. For our cadets we are focused on recovering our glider fleets back to a full service—this has been a very painful down period, but we are close to getting this back to the necessary pace. This is their 75th anniversary year and they are also engaged on a range of celebratory, commemorative and innovative projects that will embrace the whole organization and set the pathway for the next generation— cadet cyber camps with GCHQ, a link to NASA, more flying scholarships and a range of marching, musical, leadership development and charity events.
We want to engage more closely with our UK aeronautical maintenance companies to see if we could train together better, enable smoother transitions between us (both ways) and minimize disruption as we bring in new capabilities.
drill after drill in the quiet and technologically-secure training space to grow leadership at every level of the force. Q: Your view on international partners and how better to engage with them? Turner: We work hard on connecting to our closest friends and are keen on reaching out to others who traditionally we haven’t been close as potential future partners. In the UK we recognize that there are pretty few circumstances where we will fight alone and so acting by, with and through coalitions is an important component of our approach. Of course this extends as much into the synthetic training space to generate collective capability in advance of an operation as it does to using that hard edge on operations. However, there are some seriously challenging issues in all this, which will be difficult to overcome. Platform technical data (signatures, dynamic performance, communication limitations, radar/missile performance characteristics, etc.) will continue to be deeply sensitive - not only between nations, but also between original equipment manufacturers. Data transfer protocols remain a challenge for all of us, although the NATO STANAG system is as good a natural origin to converge equipment and individual skills onto common standards as any; augmented by entities such as the synthetic common data base and computer generated forces as positive and very helpful additional initiatives. Also, nations value live flying differently and so investment in synthetics has not been evenly paced—non-linear synthetic acquisition will prevent many of these opportunities from being secured. www.MTI-dhp.com
Recruiting is and will continue to be a challenge—meeting the targets, raising our game to be more representative and securing a stable flow for future years—all big challenges. Merging initial training onto Cranwell is another big £500 million ($706 million) program that will take some clever and clear thought. Revitalizing our technical training is a key objective—we need to outsource more, disinvest in about 60 percent of our ground training aids and bring in a host of upgraded media facilitates to allow/enable more self-study, working online and distance development. If we get this right it could lead to efficiencies of around £1 billion ($1.41 billion) over the next 10 years. We want to engage more closely with our UK aeronautical maintenance companies to see if we could train together better, enable smoother transitions between us (both ways) and minimize disruption as we bring in new capabilities. We have five new aircraft fleets to bring in, certify, qualify, test courseware, train instructors and start student training in the next three years—this is a big hill to climb! We are likely to form the Tedder (another famous WWII air chief marshal) Academy of RAF leadership later this year to draw together all leadership training from age 12 to the air chief himself. This will be challenging, but will be cemented when the consolidation at Cranwell occurs. We are making a range of changes to our approach to force development, both outward bound facilities across the UK, but also how we look after our people in training. A fascinating and exciting new program SPEAR (social, personal, emotional awareness for resilience) is seeking to develop far greater EQ amongst our people, build their self-awareness, personal resilience, develop coping and mitigating strategies for each person and a network of coaches. This modern and cutting-edge employment of psychologists and front line teachers has already reaped dividends in flying training, we now want to leak this across the rest of our training world. Overall, we have a big machine to look after, there’s plenty that needs polishing, some needs deletion, more needs reinvention and replacement, but together it will help us to emerge into the 5th generation air force we want and need to become by 2020. MTI 21.3 | 15
Simulating MX Simulating aircraft maintenance saves money, improves performance. By Henry Canaday, MTI Correspondent
Highly realistic hardware and software simulation have long been used to train pilots. Simulation is now being used more widely to save costs and improve training of the mechanics who keep both pilots and aircraft in the air. Sheppard Air Force Base does initial skill training of aviation maintenance techs, explained Tracey Cain, flight chief of the instruction technical unit. “We use simulation and multimedia to help students understand difficult concepts, see inside components and experience equipment not available here.” Follow-on training will be provided at any of 48 field training detachments, where simulation may also be used, but actual aircraft are more likely to be available. At Sheppard, most aircraft are dated, so training maintainers of state-of-art equipment is an ideal target for simulation. Cain said simulation use varies by type of training. Training on engines exploits simulation because it is not possible to see inside an operating engine. Training on specific tasks such as avionics operational checks also makes use of simulation because it’s easy to build simulated indicators, switches, displays and dials that do not require physical skills to check. Air Education and Training Command offers online courses, not simulation, for recurrent and refreshed training in the field, and would like to do more of this. One advantage of simulation is that it is easy to modify for unique pieces of equipment. Another is that once “people, computers and software” have been produced, it’s very easy to deploy simulation. I believe it has lots of potential,” Cain said. “We certainly are moving in that direction.” The Naval Education Training Command’s (NETC) new Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training Systems 3D (MRTS 3D) is a networked PC system with a touch screen to simulate tactical equipment for operation and maintenance training. (see the Q&A interview with Captain Erik “Rock” Etz in this issue as he talks about MRTS 16 | MTI 21.3
3D) It uses a commercial-off-the-shelf game engine and can shift between applications in minutes, letting one hardware device do realistic virtual training for many courses. An MRTS 3D was delivered to the Aviation Support Equipment School at the Naval Air Technical Training Center in Pensacola, Fla., in March 2016 for evaluation. Naval Air Systems Command is working to field additional MRTS 3Ds in the future. The system has been used for submarine training for several years. The MRTS 3D gives initial aviation maintenance personnel the theory of operations and maintenance-task familiarization. It can be used in pipeline courses, in pre-deployment training or to refresh tasks not routinely performed. An instructor can insert faults in scenarios that are difficult to simulate on actual equipment. MRTS 3D does not completely replace actual equipment, but can outfit an entire classroom at a fraction of real-equipment costs and avoid hazardous situations. And all students can practice on simulated devices simultaneously rather than wait for turns on actual equipment. NETC also has a Virtual Paint system to provide spray-technician training and reduce hazardous waste. This VPS is used to train Aviation Structural Mechanics at Norfolk, Whidbey Island, Wash., and Atsugi, Japan. It is cost-effective, greatly reduces hazardous paints and solvents and is mobile for on-site training. VPS teaches students to optimize set-up and spray techniques, improve thickness consistency, become more efficient and reduce reworks. Highly sophisticated firms have been working on maintenance simulation for quite a while. DiSTI is the gold standard for developing virtual trainers for military aviation maintenance, argues Marketing Director Scott Ariotti. Among the most notable is the Virtual Maintenance Trainer for Boeing’s F/A-18 Hornet. DiSTI is now working on virtual training for the F-35 Lightning II. The firm has developed virtual maintenance training for F-15s and F-16s, the Bell 412 for the Chilean Air Force and U.S. Army’s UH-72 Lakota. www.MTI-dhp.com
All systems were purpose-built to simulate hundreds of different maintenance tasks so students can learn on desktops, virtually walking around aircraft, opening doors, performing maintenance tasks and removing parts. Each student works on his or her own aircraft in a classroom, rather than crowding around instructors waiting for turns at aircraft. DiSTI systems can connect PCs to train maintenance teams and can be monitored by instructors, who might display one student’s actions to help other students. DiSTI’s latest Army contract requires students to use tablet PCs in hangars to access training content from the www.MTI-dhp.com
Learning Management System. DiSTI tools could be used anywhere so that, “training is something you do, not a place you go,” Ariotti explained. The firm is prepared to offer remote training if military customers seek it. A highly automated approach produces DiSTI systems. Customer requirements automatically populate a data repository with three-dimensional models of parts and systems. DiSTI can automatically design environments for many different tasks, yielding speed and economy in development. Ariotti predicts the future will see more augmented reality, for example using Microsoft HoloLens glasses, for maintenance training. Tru Simulation & Training develops courseware and computer-based Level 1 through 4 interactive multimedia instruction, the top level 4 being 3D virtual environments for military aviation maintenance training, explained Senior Program Manager Jesse Hyman. Its Level 4 virtual environment is used for mechanics on the F-35. Tru also provides full-size part-task trainers. Each element plays a role. “You start in classrooms with PowerPoint,” Hyman explained. “Then you go to the virtual world to practice tasks. Then you go to part-task trainers to get a feel for how heavy and awkward things are, and then they cut you loose on flight lines under a supervisor on real aircraft.” Virtual and part-task trainers train without downtime for, or risk of damage to, real aircraft. Hyman said training for removal and installation of wheels and tires, removal of electronic components and operational checks in cockpits may sometimes be done all virtually. “You can walk around the plane virtually, take panels off, remove cables and components and check the cockpit to ensure faults have been corrected.” MTI 21.3 | 17
Tru supports training in foreign countries, chiefly on the C-17. “They can pull up a website and get refreshers before class or take a person from another aircraft and provide some familiarization,” Hyman explained. The company also supports training for the B-1 and F-22. Tru’s simulation for the F-35 enables techs to go through entire maintenance tasks, unlike other virtual trainers. And instructors can monitor multiple students. Hyman estimated U.S. services do half of aviation-maintenance training virtually now and said some defense officials would like to do 90 percent. He see opportunities in aircraft such as the Air Force’s new tanker and longrange strike bomber, as well as old planes like the B-52 and A-10. Dennis Hoffmann, a former Army helicopter mechanic and now marketer for Boeing, said his firm makes virtual systems, part-task trainers and full replicas of rotorcraft for training. Customers want to minimize training footprints while training in troubleshooting and fault isolation for, especially, electrical components. This can be done by simulation or even electronic technical manuals, holding costs down. If simulation prevents incorrect removals and no-fault founds, or prevents damage by incorrect handling, it saves “hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Hoffman notes. This is especially true for tasks performed rarely, long after initial lessons. For example, a mechanic removing the front fuel cell from an AH-64 Apache might forget to remove the clips. And some errors also risk serious injury to mechanics. So virtual tools developed for classrooms could be used in the field to refresh training. Critical parts of simulation could be implemented on ruggedized laptops. “You pay one time for it, but can use it many times,” Hoffman explained. Field training would also be useful in battle-damage assessments, preparing mechanics to troubleshoot damaged aircraft even before they land. Hoffman said field simulation is done now, but not as much as it could be, partly due to budgets. “They spend millions to train pilots, but maybe hundreds to train mechanics, who are responsible for hundreds of millions worth of aircraft.” Boeing’s latest maintenance-training effort is for the P-8 Poseidon. It will be a
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high-fidelity virtual maintenance trainer using aircraft performance data. The company has also built a full replica of a CH-47 for training Canadian mechanics. The mock-up allows removal and replacement of components hundreds of times, which would damage a real Chinook by excess wear and tear. Ngrain offers a platform that enables technical teams to create their own virtual- and augmented-reality 3D maintenance training environments, all without writing programming code, explained Barry Po, senior director of product and business development. This platform, Producer Pro, has a 3D engine that imports 3D data from many sources and
enables developers to author step-by-step instruction, including illustration and animation. Its 3D environments can deploy on mobile and wearable devices, including smart-glasses. The company also builds applications for maintenance and repair actions in specific environments. Ngrain has been developing its tools for 15 years and works in 27 countries and for all U.S. defense services, including Homeland Security. Its training tools can double retention of knowledge, a huge gain in training efficiency as lessons need not be repeated. Ngrain tools also reduce time required for maintenance activities by up to a third and
Boeing’s P-8 Virtual Maintenance Trainer is currently used by the U.S. Navy for its P-8A Poseidon fleet. (Boeing photo)
Boeing has built the Chinook maintenance trainer as a specific and unique solution to maintenance training allowing handson experience for crews and maintainers. (Boeing photo)
reduce maintenance errors, which require expensive rework, to as little as 5 percent. Po cited an Ngrain application for helping mechanics assess and repair battle damage on F-22s and F-35s, a task that used to be done by hand, as a major time saver. Unlike other training systems, Ngrain tools can be deployed on mobile devices, including wearables. “And our entire platform is purpose-built for maintenance activities,” Po noted. “Most platforms are general, not very focused.” The company is now developing a 3D scanner that will automatically detect where damage has been done, another task previously done manually. The new tool goes well beyond the Ngrain system now used on the F-22 and F-35. CAE’s aviation maintenance training exploits the latest simulation technologies, said Chuck Morant. That, plus instructors’ experience in training enables the company to optimize maintenance training. For example, CAE recently delivered 10 classrooms and more than 100 stations of its C-130J Simfinity Virtual Maintenance Trainers (VMTs) to the Royal Canadian Air Force. These VMTs interact with courseware and are compatible with the RCAF’s Integrated Learning Environment. Some VMTs are coupled with part-task trainers, allowing trainees to familiarize themselves with systems first, then do diagnostics and testing on these trainers. The RCAF required all training be done on virtual and task trainers, not on aircraft. CAE’s works closely with OEMs such as Lockheed Martin and Airbus Defense and Space on training. It has also delivered a cockpit maintenance simulator for Airbus’s A400M transport. In June 2015, CAE agreed to provide the Royal Australian Navy with an MH-60R Seahawk composite maintenance trainer. This CMT will be a modified MH-60R, adapted to train on maintenance of mechanical, electrical and hydraulic systems. Instructor-controlled malfunctions will train personnel in fault isolation and removals and replacement of failed components. CAE has already delivered an MH-60R avionics maintenance trainer. CAE primarily provides maintenance trainers for C-130Js, A400Ms and helicopters like the MH-60R. Morant said military customers www.MTI-dhp.com
Highly realistic hardware and software simulation have long been used to train pilots. Simulation is now being used more widely to save costs and improve training of the mechanics who keep both pilots and aircraft in the air. (U.S. DoD photos)
benefit from his firm’s wide experience in civilian training. For example, the U.S. Air Force uses CAE’s virtual maintenance trainer for the Boeing 737 to train maintainers on C-40s, the military variant of the 737. The CAE exec stressed that virtual trainers must always support specific customer requirements. For training on composite repairs for the RCAF, CAE designed a selfpaced, game-based interactive learning module with virtual equipment, process animation and scoring scheme. For initial generic avionics training, CAE produced virtual training for the four most demanding avionics systems, including procedures, test equipment and tools.
Morant said the advantages of virtual training are now so obvious he cannot think of a government or defense force in the world that argues simulation doesn’t offer compelling benefits. “The balance is trending to increased use of simulation-based training because of cost-effectiveness, safety and ability to accelerate experience.” Germany’s 26-year-old, 200-person Reiser Simulation and Training offers products and services to train military plots and maintenance technicians, explained strategy head Frank Thieser. For mechanics it offers hardware, hardware combined with software and, in cooperation with a partner firm, training services. MTI 21.3 | 19
One specialty is a full-size replica of an aircraft, for example the NH-90 helicopter. At a cost of about $46.6 million and with two training aircraft needed for each 50 operating aircraft, using real aircraft for training would be very expensive. Reiser can provide highly realistic training replicas for 20 to 30 percent of the real aircraft’s cost. It NH-90 replica has been accepted by European regulators for training on 900 maintenance procedures, and Reiser has delivered five replicas to French and German forces. Full-scale hardware replicas can be complemented by simulation software that teaches students cockpit skills on avionic, fuel, hydraulic and electrical systems. Thieser said replicas are best for expensive platforms that cost over 10 million euros. Less money is saved by replicating inexpensive aircraft like small helicopters. Replication must get weight, center of gravity, color and, where With a full-size replica of the NH-90 helicopter costing of about $46.6 million and with two necessary, function right. If data is not available from training aircraft needed for each 50 operating aircraft, using real aircraft for training would be very expensive. Reiser can provide highly realistic training replicas for 20 to 30 percent of the real equipment manufacturers, Reiser can disassemble aircraft aircraft’s cost. (Reiser photo) and reverse engineer the replica’s parts. The Reiser chief said full replicas are increasingly popular for training young people who are very familiar with the digital word but must learn how to turn a wrench in the physical world. And replicas do not put pressure on part supply chains, which may be tight for new models. Reiser is now looking at building maintenance-training replicas for the A400M and the new H145 helicopter. It has acquired a U.S. firm, and would use this firm to approach any U.S. training opportunities. Computer-based training (CBT) and virtual maintenance training systems (VMTSs) are constantly available and easily maintained, unlike hardware trainers or actual aircraft, noted Vic Polkowski, program director of L-3 Link Simulation and Training. Moreover, “repetitive experience in a safe environment gives students greater opportunity to sharpen skills. Instructors more effectively monitor, assess and remediate students to ensure critical skills are attained. And CBT and VMTS increase training tasks by introducing complex malfunctions and multiple configurations.” Polkowski said virtual trainers lower costs by increasing students per instructor, reducing time on physical devices and increasing retention, thus reducing re-training. Highly realistic hardware and software simulation have long been used to train pilots. Simulation Physical trainers concentrate on parts that are heavy, is now being used more widely to save costs and improve training of the mechanics who keep both hard-to-reach or difficult to manage. But they do not allow pilots and aircraft in the air. (U.S. DoD photo) each trainee to exercise every procedure, while CBT makes this possible. And CBT lessons are accessible for review at and repairs, build on virtual training and then use physical replicas of any time. Further, virtual simulation avoids costly and time-consumaircraft sections. GEMT allows students to do supervised or unsupering hardware updates to maintain concurrency. vised exercises with parts and manual procedures virtually. Its VisuL-3’s MQ-1C Gray Eagle maintenance trainer (GEMT) is set for alization Environment simulates manual activities down to torqueing deployment in 2016. Its adaptive learning in blended training will of screws. Once skills are mastered virtually, students can isolate transform Army training of Gray Eagle maintainers, said system archifaults and remove or replace components on part-task trainers. tect Craig Steiner. Students will learn to conduct operational checks 20 | MTI 21.3
By Hank Hogan, MTI Correspondent The goal is to fight like you train and train like you fight. So, what do you do when you have to prepare for operations all over the world against an ever-growing range of possible adversaries? One solution widely adopted by militaries globally is to train using image generation, a technology shared with and taken from the video gaming industry. This can be teamed with an image database and a projection system to produce realistic simulations. Recent hardware and software advances have made such an approach more affordable and capable than ever before. “Image generation will play a more pivotal and increasingly important role in training tomorrow’s warfighter as we continue to address the training needs in a rapidly changing threat space,” said Donnie Palmer, lead systems engineer at U.S. Army PEO STRI-Gaming. He continued, “Being able to realistically represent the areas of interest virtually will definitely be dependent on image generation capabilities.” But, Palmer notes, there are certain issues—such as the military need for a high degree of cyber security—that make a direct port of commercial technology impractical. At the same time, military purchases are a very small part of the $70 billion annual video gaming market, which means that the military can move the image generation needle only slightly. Finally, image generation cannot create new core capabilities, such as small, long duration UAVs or better targeting systems. Those take years to develop and deploy. “While image generation can help to bridge the training gaps for operations, it isn’t a magic bullet.” Palmer said. Creating a simulation environment that can perform training wizardry involves a balancing act, according to Vlad Argintaru, project manager at Aero Simulation. The Tampa, Fla.-based company provides products and services for commercial and military aviation training. www.MTI-dhp.com
Image courtesy of MetaVR
Getting – and creating – the picture on image generation. Argintaru said that the budget or space for a simulator may be limited, one reason tradeoffs may be made. For instance, the requirement may be that the simulator be in a containerized environment on a ship at sea. In that case, a full-fledged trainer will not work and compromises must be made. One such may be that the system does not gyrate to simulate the feel of aircraft movement but instead compensates with other training cues, such as realistic visuals. Other aspects that have to be balanced may lie inside the trainer itself. For example, advances in different elements of a simulator can impact other components. Take the projection system. This moved from analog to digital, resulting in image stability over time and a significant increase in resolution. “Modern projectors produce between four to eight million pixels, which are image elements, per projector, which adds significant information cues for training. But that also means that my image generator must compute four million to eight pixels at 60 hertz, which is a challenge,” Argintaru said. Fortunately, that computation requirement is now easier to meet and can be done with cheaper hardware. Years ago image generation was done on proprietary hardware, with the cost measured in millions of dollars for a system. Now, computation can be handled by commercial off-the-shelf gear, using graphics processing unit, GPU, chips produced by NVidia and others. As a result, hardware system cost has fallen more than 10-fold as compared to what it was. In another illustration of the tradeoffs found in image generation, higher resolution real world imagery means a database consumes more storage. At one time, a visual database might fit comfortably into a disk drive of a few megabytes. Now, it may be that tens of terabytes are not MTI 21.3 | 21
enough. Beyond storage, such large files also strain network resources, as all of those bits travel back and forth. Processing, storing, and moving around all those pixels may not be necessary, according to Oliver Arup. He’s technical director of Bohemia Interactive Simulations of Prague, Czech Republic. “There’s almost no evidence that higher fidelity simulations give better training,” Arup said. He added that what is needed is a faithful enough reproduction to produce a suspension of disbelief in users. That is, the image generation, projection, and database have to be detailed enough that users forget that it’s a simulation and not real. Anything beyond that may not buy a training benefit and worth the cost. What sometimes happens, Arup said, is that end users come to synthetic training and associated image generation with certain expectations driven by their experience with games. Thus, they may expect a very detailed and lifelike rendering of an armored vehicle. After all, that’s what they get with easily affordable game hardware and software. That experience, though, is a result of an enormous expenditure of time and money. A game may cost $250 million to develop, but the cost is worth it because all of that can be earned back in a single, opening weekend, according to Arup. He has more than academic insight into this because Bohemia Interactive bases its image generation engine for military training on one developed for ArmA 2, a military simulation game. As for the future, Arup said image generation, like everything else, is headed to the cloud—at least partly. Cloud-based servers will handle back end functions, like the artificial intelligence that directs synthetic constructs in training exercises. Local machines may do rendering, with the only data flowing back and forth being what’s needed to update changed pixels. One outcome could be training image generation similar to what’s done for augmented reality. A warfighter may, for instance, look through a pair of binoculars and see a simulated plane flying by, with this image generation being done as part of air support training. Such an approach would be possible because image generation will be less and less confined to training centers. It also helps that most of the computational burden would actually be provided by the cloud. Bohemia Interactive Simulations has created VBS Blue, a planetary rendering system, Arup said. This cut down on the amount of time it would take to create the input needed for image generation. The raw data required for this is readily available, thanks to the advent of LIDAR and photogrammetry data capture of features with millimeter precision “There’s no lack of data anymore. With free sources of data nowadays, you can get good coverage of the entire planet,” Arup explained. Solving the problem of how to feed image generators is also something that Cambridge, Mass.-based VT Mäk is addressing, according to Dan Brockway, vice president of marketing and new product innovation. The standard way to prepare terrain databases is time-consuming, complex and expensive, he said. VT Mäk’s approach streams source data directly into the image generator and simulation systems. If the input data lacks the appropriate detail, it can be filled in via an automated process. “When newer, more accurate, or higher resolution source data is available, it can be added to the server in real time and available for the next simulation run,” Brockway said. Thanks to this and similar methods, training can happen when and where needed. This means that rehearsals can accommodate more rapid changes in missions and objectives. Other advances come from hardware improvements. For instance, COTS graphic processing units are now much more powerful, so much so 22 | MTI 21.3
TOP: An image replicating the view from the copilot’s seat looking out to the left. Notice the field of view goes all the way back to the wing. (Aerosimulation photo) ABOVE: The HC-144 reconfigurable flight training device. (Aerosimulation photo)
that the conversion of elevation data into polygons that can be rendered, or tessellation, of the terrain can now be put off until just before it is needed. The hardware is fast enough that this can be done without a noticeable lag. As a result, simulation systems don’t have to wait for an entire terrain database to be built online before it can be used. Consequently, training scenario terrain can be active more quickly and systems can be more responsive than had been the case in the past. It’s important to remember that image generators don’t only create visible scenes. They also work in such non-visible domains as those presented by night vision goggles, infrared, radar and other instruments or sensors, said Robert Brantley. He’s principal product line manager for image generation, synthetic environments and radar simulation in the simulations and training solutions division of Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based Rockwell Collins. By operating in these different domains, image generation can provide awareness or immersion in the context of either training or rehearsal. Importantly, the same technology can form the basis for augmented reality, technology that presents warfighters with such information as the location of friend or foe accurately superimposed on a scene. Hence, image generation related to what’s used in training can provide an operations combat edge. That has certain implications as to where image generation is headed in the future. In the past, simulators were composed of and image generation demanded large pieces of hardware. “Today image generation is being applied to dynamic situations and tomorrow [it] will deliver immersive training and rehearsal to soldiers wherever they are and onto any number of visualization devices from www.MTI-dhp.com
the entire processing time can be reduced significantly and simulators, to tablets, to head wearable eye display image generation made speedier. devices. Large, multi-cabinet hardware that was the stanLooking forward, Overy noteed a growing demand dard in past years, is being replaced by man-wearable to reduce simulator footprints in terms of maintenance, solutions today and will be replaced by cyber-secure power consumption and cooling. The ability to provide cloud delivery in the future,” Brantley predicted. greener, more environmentally-friendly solutions in the Key to putting hardware on such an extensive diet future could become an important discriminator between will be use of cloud technology. Remote servers will vendors, he says. shoulder the computational burden of image generation, The increasing use of simulation for military training except for a small slice that will be done locally. has created an opportunity not only in image generation Another image generation change that Brantley sees but also in the data that feeds into image generation, happening lies in the business model. In the commersaid W. Garth Smith, president of MetaVR. The Brookline, cial world, image generation and rendering costs have Brian Overy Mass.-based company makes 3D real-time PC-based visual decreased to the point that low-end solutions are almost software systems. free. Image generators, such as the company’s Virtual Because of this, gaming companies are evolving to Reality Scene Generator, need data from which to build make their money in other ways. One such is from tie-ins, scenes and this data has traditionally been costly to with an example being Amazon. It gives away a game acquire, Smith said. Now, MetaVR is taking advantage of engine but requires game developers to have all data flow technology advances to cut those costs. through its cloud, thereby generating revenue from data “The development of commercial portable UAVs and fees. Companies engaged in the military simulation and the improvements in digital camera technology allow image generation market may look to such models as a us to collect sub-inch resolution imagery with our own way to raise revenue in the future, Brantley says. portable UAV and then build ultra-high resolution terrain It isn’t only companies that deal with changing ecodatabases using that imagery,” Smith said. nomics. So, too, do militaries around the world and that He mentioned two recent examples built from two explains why image generation is of growing importance, W. Garth Smith centimeter resolution imagery. One is virtual terrain of two said Brian Overy, vice president of marketing and sales at target areas at the Fallon Range Training Complex in Nev. Vestal, N.Y.-based Diamond Visionics. The company supThe other is of the Prospect Square area of Yuma Proving Ground in Ariz. plies image generation solutions. With a two-centimeter resolution, training students can see bullet “The training of the military has had to adapt with real limitations of holes in vehicles, small shrubbery and small craters left from ordinance. budget constraints,” Overy says. “Current Diamond Visionics GenesisRTX Of course, with higher resolution input data, MetaVR had to make imImage Generation allows for the troops to train in the most realistic enviprovements to its image generator to render environments to the same ronment available and fully prepare soldiers to confront real-time decision sub-inch resolution. making instances at a fraction of the cost of using real munitions and Many of these innovations and advancements related to image generequipment.” ation exploit the latest in commercial technology, an approach that yields The company has been working to cut processing time and increase significant benefits. For instance, this means that the military gets the image generation capabilities, he adds. For instance, a bottleneck in the results of many billions of dollars of research and development without past was that systems often waited while the processor figured out having to itself spend that money. what to do next. Now However, for image generation the downside of COTS is that the Diamond Visionics softmilitary market must make do with what the commercial sector proware is bypassing the duces. One issue, for instance, is that video games go through frequent processor altogether, hardware iterations and revisions, rapid changes that render a system a working directly with few years old obsolete—and potentially hard to get replacement parts for. the GPU. The advancement of gaming technology is speeding up, which also Another improvepresents another problem: the relatively slow government procurement ment has arisen from process. “Without even taking into consideration development time for inmaking use of parallel tegration and cyber security to meet DoD standards, the military already processing. This helps cannot not move fast enough to deploy and keep up with the current because many of the pace of changes and advancements,” said the Army’s Palmer. changes from frame to Finally, synthetic training may be cost effective and getting better frame in a generated but in the end it’s just that—synthetic. Even those in the image generascene are the result of tion industry don’t see the synthetic experience ever fully replacing real doing the same operatraining, tion over-and-over again “You always at some point have to get into a real cockpit. For training to different groups of to be useful, you always need to get out into the field, get wet and use pixels. By breaking such your rifle,” said Bohemia Interactive Simulation’s Arup. chores up into tasks However, this doesn’t mean that advances in image generation and that can be done in parsimulation aren’t still needed or valuable. As Arup said, “The [synthetic] allel to different groups training has to good enough to make that live training more useful.” of pixels simultaneously, www.MTI-dhp.com
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Technology advances are driving greater interoperability opportunities for advanced distributed learning. By Peter Buxbaum, MTI Correspondent
The United States government has been out ahead of the curve when it comes it advanced distributed learning. Back in days of the Clinton administration, the Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative was established within the Department of Defense—but with a government-wide purview—by presidential order in 1999. Needless to say, the whole idea of ADL has changed dramatically since that time. In the late 1990s, ADL was thought of as the ability to host a training course on a server to enable distance learning. Technology has evolved significantly since then and with it the capabilities that ADL can provide and that it can be envisioned to provide. Nowadays ADL, in the military context, is thought of as a series of capabilities that delivers training and education when, where, and how warfighters need it based upon their individual preferences and goals. Key the most current developments in ADL are new technologies that automate detailed performance evaluations across training platforms allowing for a singular view of trainee progress and the personalization of training programs. One of the earlier successes of the ADL Initiative was to develop and promote the Sharable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM), an interoperability standard used to package and reuse digital course material which has gained wide international acceptance in military, government, and academic circles. These days ADL is marching toward a place where warfighter training performance can be measured and monitored and individualized learning can be developed based upon the information that this tracking activity provides. The development and dissemination of xAPI, a protocol that allows software applications to share data about human performance, is currently a major focus within the ADL Initiative. Besides developing and promoting technical standards, the ADL Initiative, under the directorship of Dr. Sae Schatz since June of last year, has formed partnerships with military, government, and academic organizations around the world to foster an environment of collaboration as well as promote the technical Dr. Sae Schatz and substantive training and educations goals of the United States government. “In 1999 we didn’t have smartphones,” said Schatz, commenting on just one of the differences in ADL between then and now. “It’s a whole different paradigm. Then, it was all about how we do e-learning. We still have quite a bit of that, but in addition we now have mobile devices, wearable devices, and augmented and virtual reality, all of which have huge implications for ADL. The Web 1.0 approach that began in 1999 has evolved into getting training 24 | MTI 21.3
performance data can be made interoperand education to warfighters in learning able with xAPI. That provides a great deal of environments and operational environments flexibility.” SCORM isn’t exactly replaced by and back again and to have that learning xAPI; for legacy systems, the two can work monitored and adapted continuously.” together. “We have a fundamental belief that learnThe key advancement that today’s ADL ing should be like GPS, that knows where is seeking is to enable the tracking and you are and where you are going,” said Mike measurement of trainees’ performance as Hruska, CEO of Problem Solutions. “Learning opposed to their mere exposure to course should be more than anytime, anywhere exmaterial. “Exposure suggests that students periences. It should be more about right-time were placed in a learning environment where experiences.” they could see and feel the training content,” The SCORM standard that emerged from said Alan Carlin, a senior research engineer the ADL Initiative is now used by e-learning at Aptima. “But that doesn’t guarantee that developers all over the world. The protocol any training actually took place. Our concept enables interoperability among data, applicaof adaptive training makes sure there was a tions, and course material, allowing the use state change in the student from novice to of learning materials across systems and, journeyman to expert. Performance measuretheoretically, enabling the reuse of course ment allows that to happen by making sure modules in newer material. the individual student demonstrates the “SCORM is a standardized way to package required knowledge and understanding.” different types of course content and to agThe ADL Initiative’s gregate them,” explained Compartnership network is about mander Geir Isaksen, executive more than collaborating director of the Norwegian on warfighter training and Defense ADL Office in Oslo. education. It actually has “Any learning management national strategic implications, system that follows SCORM according to Schatz. “From will recognize the material and the standpoint of international be able to use it. SCORM packrelations, when we offer trainages, aggregates, and impleing and education it is easy ments content and allows for the other party to say yes,” management systems to store she explained. “It’s a lowcourses and track activities risk way to open the door to and results for each individual Geir Isaksen larger collaborations. Beyond learner in a standardized way.” that, training and education Experience API, or xAPI, is promotes stability and that is also a strategic the next-generation standard applicable to national goal.” ADL and is comparable to SCORM in that it is Closer to the ground, collaborating with designed to achieve interoperability, among coalition partners and potential partners is a other goals. But where SCORM works primarnecessary prerequisite to performing actual ily with learning management systems, xAPI missions together. “Collaboration with intersupports more diverse platforms. xAPI takes national allies also gives us perspective on the approach of creating a common applicawhat we are working on,” said Schatz. xAPI, tion programming interface (API), a set of for example, originally an internal project of programming instructions and standards that the ADL Initiative, benefitted from feedback allow web-based applications to pass data to from the organization’s international parteach other without user intervention. ners, Schatz noted. xAPI lets applications capture data on The Norwegian Defense University behuman performance, along with associated incame a partner of the ADL Initiative in 2009, structional content and performance context but had already adopted SCORM as its staninformation. The protocol also provides subdard for e-learning course materials as early APIs to access and store information about as 2006. “We saw that the U.S. armed forced state and content. This enables nearly dyhad established a program to come up with namic tracking of activities from any platform a standards specification on how to produce or software system, from learning manageand develop web-based learning courses to ment systems to mobile devices, simulations, be used and reused across the branches and wearable devices, and more. across NATO,” said Isaksen. “We went with “From a simulation to a spreadsheet,” exSCORM quite early as a specification to come plained Schatz, “any program that can store www.MTI-dhp.com
up with web-based content. With SCORM we were able to reuse courses developed in other countries and they could use our content. Having a common standard also allowed us to get help from partners who had strength in areas where we may have lacked competencies.” Norway’s e-learning vendors exhibited some initial skepticism about conforming to SCORM but soon learned that they had no alternative but to follow the standard. “When we started using only SCORM-compliant vendors the others followed suit,” said Isaksen. “We just had to be firm in demanding that all course materials use SCORM. Now there is no vendor in Norway that doesn’t develop according to those specifications. It has received acceptance all over the community.” Norway has used SCORM-compliant courses developed in other countries on combatting human trafficking and on cultural awareness for its forces stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq. Norway itself developed courses on armed conflict that were translated into English and are now used by the armed forces of over 10 nations around the world. Norway’s contract with its vendors allowed it to freely share the courses it developed with allied nations around the world. Where SCORM has fallen short, at least so far, according to Isaksen, is in its promise to allow course developers and users to repurpose and reuse modules within individual courses. “We still have to buy the entire course if we want to use part of it,” he said. “The idea that you can build new courses with modules of existing courses like layers of bricks hasn’t really worked because each course has a different design and they don’t always fit.” The next generation of ADL requires tracking and measurement of progress not only within training environments and learning management systems but anywhere and everywhere learning does and can take place. Not surprisingly, the internet provides a great deal of material relevant to military training and education, from PDF documents to YouTube videos. “The idea is that student interaction with any kind of content needs to be tracked and their progress measured,” said Isaksen,
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“whether they are using material in the learning management system or online on the web or in a simulator. xAPI can help in that area, so, hopefully, that specification will be adopted the same as SCORM after a while.” The ADL Initiative is seeking to create a learning ecosystem powered by xAPI, which integrates schoolhouse and learning-system activities with informal learning, just-in-time training, and other education and training opportunities adapted to individual learners base on their characteristics, jobs, needs, and performance. “We want performance to be tracked at the micro level,” said Schatz. “It would enable anytime, anyplace training and it would recommend relevant material to individual trainees, whether a podcast or a schoolhouse course, based on their individual needs and progress. The system would constantly evaluate how the student is doing and would incorporate social or peer-topeer learning as well as bottom up learning where students bring something to the table.” The ADL Initiative is also investigating how to put appropriate privacy safeguards in place within such a ubiquitous monitoring system. Aptima is working on concepts in adaptive learning that allow for the close monitoring and measurement of student progress and the adaptation of learning experiences to individual needs. “Adaptive training involves an artificial intelligence type of framework,” said Carlin. “It allows us to measure performance quickly and to suggest exercises based on the strength and weaknesses of individuals and teams.” The new generation of performance measurements go beyond whether the student has been exposed to material and passed a quiz. With artificial intelligence and big data capabilities, the performance measures now being developed determine, not only whether the student absorbed the material but also whether the student developed the skills being taught at the desired rate. Based in this analysis, a system can tailor follow-on courses and materials at higher or lower levels of difficulty based upon the individual needs and progress patterns of individual learners. In many learning environments, performance measurements are not at the forefront of priorities, according to Courtney Dean, a senior scientist at Aptima. “High fidelity content and realism tend to be the focus,” he said. “The ability to check the boxes is assumed to indicate the effectiveness of the 26 | MTI 21.3
learning experience. The burden of evaluating the progress of individual trainees is left to the instructor.” In too many systems, the progress of the student and the efficacy the instruction is left to the judgment of the instructor, Dean noted. “This may be a difficult enough burden for an instructor in a collocated environment and all the more so in a distributed environment,” he added. “The performance measurement is not an end in itself but it is essential if the training material is to dynamic, useful, and of the highest quality. Without performance measurements, it is impossible to know if students are actually learning and developing the critical skills they are trying to develop.” With much online learning, students have the capacity to repeatedly review the materials to the point where they can pass the quiz. “Performance measurements are now transitioning from exposure to material to actual learning and demonstrating the effectiveness of the learning experience,” said Dean. “We design performance measurements to fit the environment. That will usually involve a behavioral indicator of performing the task being trained on.” So, for example, training in certain combat operations would require testing, not only of the requisite knowledge, but also of the ability to hit a target. “That way students can be evaluated on whether they are performing as expected,” said Dean. “Tracking is super important” agreed Hruska. “The ADL Initiative is evolving the idea of content and data interoperability and moving toward the notion of interoperability of performance assessments. Data on individual learners training on games or simulators or in a real vehicle can be seen and evaluated in a single view.” Problem Solutions is helping the ADL Initiative in a number of these areas, including providing staff and expertise to the program and performing research to develop the tools required for the interoperability of performance measures. The company also has a number of research efforts ongoing with the Army Research Laboratory to turn out learning simulation models that can be incorporated into the kinds of interoperable performance assessments that ADL is trying to achieve. “We are building technologies and tools in that area and sharing them with industry,” said Hruska. “We are also speaking at conferences about the ADL Initiative and xAPI
and explaining how companies can contribute to the learning ecosystem that the ADL Initiative envisions.” Beyond xAPI, a research effort is under way to develop an open source Competency and Skills System (CASS) that organizations and software applications can use to define, manage, and apply competencies and skills. The effort is designed to standardize the many competency efforts now extant within the learning community. “The CASS project is meant to serve as common ground by creating a platform to support disparate approaches,” said Schatz. “The intended result is a critical piece of infrastructure that enables competencies, competency frameworks, and competencybased learner models to be managed and accessed as persistent objects that exist independently of a learning management system, course, training program, or credential.” “Making competency models interoperable should be a real game changer,” Hruska commented. “As is the case when trying to make any new technology viable, we are working hard to find customers—organizations within DoD—to work with us in the ugly teenage years of field testing before technologies get fully matured,” said Schatz. “The biggest challenge is maturing a technology from the lab to the field is to make sure that it follows the way people actually need to use it. We are trying to overcome that challenge in a very deliberative way.” The biggest achievement of the ADL Initiative so far, according to Isaksen, has been in developing the technical specs for SCORM and the emerging new specifications like xAPI. “But, he added, “even though we have developed some great technology we still have some challenges when it comes to learning outcomes. We must not forget that we still have to apply normal teaching principles when using technology. Going forward, we need to shift the focus to learning methods. When we are using technology we need to make sure that we are developing good content as well.”
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Aptima . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 www.aptima.com CAE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 www.cae.com Eurosatory. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C3 www.eurosatory.com I/ITSEC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C2 www.iitsec.org MetaVR. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C4 www.metavr.com Saab. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 www.saab.com
Fostering ADL Successes Page 24
Boston ▪ DC ▪ Dayton ▪ Orlando | www.aptima.com
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Calendar AUVSI/Xponential May 2-5, 2016 New Orleans, La. www.xponential.org/auvsi2016
ITEC May 17-19, 2016 London, UK www.itec.co.uk
Eurosatory June 13-17, 2016 Paris, France www.eurosatory.com
Africa Aerospace & Defence September 14-18, 2016 Waterkloof Air Force Base www.aadexpo.co.za
Middle East Special Operations Commanders Conference May 9, 2016 Amman, Jordan www.inegma.com/events/45/ Middle-East-Special-OperationsCommanders-Conference-MESOC-2016-
SOFIC May 23-26, 2016 Tampa, Fla. www.sofic.org
TSIS June 15-16, 2016 Orlando, Fla. www.trainingsystems.org
SOMA Scientific Assembly May 23-26, 2016 Charlotte, N.C. www.specialoperationsmedicine.org
Naval Training & Simulation UK July 6-8, 2016 www.navaltrainingsimulation.com
Modern Day Marine September 27-29, 2016 Quantico, Va. www.marinemilitaryexpos.com/ modern-day-marine.shtml
SOFEX May 10, 13, 2016 Amman, Jordan www.sofexjordan.com Sea-Air-Space May 16-18, 2016 National Harbor, Md. www.seaairspace.org
Fast Jet Pilot Training Eastern Europe June 9-10, 2016 Prague, Czech Republic www.smi-online.co.uk
Associate Publisher Holly Foster email@example.com Correspondents PETER BUXBAUM • HENERY CANADAY • PATRICK CLARKE • ANDREW DRWIEGA • Hank Hogan • KAREN THUERMER Publication Design Jennifer Owers • James Scott Cassidy
Air & Space Conference & Technology Expo September 19-21, 2016 National Harbor, Md. www.afa.org
Subscription Information ISSN 1097-0975 Military Training International is published eight times a year by Defense House Publishing. All Rights Reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly forbidden. © Copyright 2016. Military Training International is free to qualified members of the U.S. military, employees of the U.S. government and non-U.S. foreign service based in the United States All others: $80 per year. Foreign: $120 per year.
AUSA Annual October 3-5, 2016 Washington, D.C. http://ausameetings. org/2016annualmeeting/ I/ITSEC November 28-December 2, 2016 Orlando, Fla. www.iitsec.org
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TEAM ORLANDO Joint Project Management Office for Medical Modeling and Simulation Activated in Orlando By Theresa Bradley
On April 8, PEO STRI activated the Joint Project Management Office for Medical Modeling and Simulation (JPMO MMS) and established a provisional program manager to oversee the office. Army Lieutenant Colonel (P) Chris Todd stepped into the role. JPMO MMS is intended to: • Support the services’ shared clinical training requirements through acquisition of medical modeling and simulation capability. • Standardize Military Healthcare System (MHS) medical modeling and simulation capabilities and centralize life cycle management. • Serve as the single transition office for Medical M&S Science and Technology into developing MHS programs of record for medical modeling and simulation. The JPMO will bring standard processes, similar to other acquisition offices, to the fast growing segment of medical simulation. Chartered by the Defense Health Agency (DHA), but managed by PEO STRI, the office will be on par with counterparts, such as PM TRADE, PM ITE and PM ITTS, with the top leadership spot filled by the services on a rotating basis with a colonel or the equivalent. The move is in response to medical simulation’s growing importance in medical training and an effort to bring joint acquisition processes in line with DHA objectives. All services and the Veteran’s Administration currently utilize medical modeling and simulation in training, and often have similar
needs, but each may fulfill those needs with different training tools and acquisition processes. Army Colonel Dan Irizarry, command surgeon for PEO STRI and clinical advisor to JPMO MMS, said, “ All health care facilities need to teach medical personnel skills, such as managing patients with heart attacks. Because they frequently use the same curriculum, there are opportunities to standardize training devices to support this training while improving training outcomes and potentially reducing cost.” The military has significantly improved battlefield casualty-survival rates, but the transition from the active battle will make it difficult to sustain life-saving skills specific to wartime. Combat medical skills, used at the point of injury and in deployed hospitals, can only be learned through actual casualties or through simulation. Realistic medical training supported by simulation will be critical to ensuring these lessons learned are carried into future conflicts. “By taking a more holistic approach to medical simulation requirements JPMO will be better positioned to help the MHS and VA accomplish training goals in a more efficient and cost-effective manner,” Irizarry said. It is not uncommon today that one military healthcare customer will purchase simulationtraining tools for a requirement from one vendor, while another military customer purchases a solution from a different vendor for the same
Program Executive Officer for Simulation, Training and Instrumentation Major General Jonathan A. Maddux, Lieutenant Colonel (Promotable) Chris Todd and Robert Bolluyt from the Defense Health Agency.
28 | MTI 21.3
requirement. This leads to unnecessary redundancy, increased costs and potentially diminished clinical skill. Also, because of different procurement methods in healthcare, it is likely that neither customer considered life cycle management implications for these items. Irizarry said, “Medical simulation customers don’t typically view capability acquisition the way acquisition professionals do because that’s not the way medical procurement works. If they need something, they go to their procurement agent, and the item shows up. They don’t think about how it got there, its long-term maintenance or disposal. The JPMO MMS will bring expertise to the DHA’s medical acquisition system that addresses these shortfalls.” The creation of the JPMO has been an evolution. The JPMO MMS is building upon PEO STRI’s PM MEDSIM office, which currently supports the Air Force Medical Modeling and Simulation Training (AFMMAST) program and the Navy Graduate Medical Education training program. By merging and aligning solutions for two customers, the office improved performance and lowered cost for both the Navy and Air Force. For JPMO MMS, the goal remains the same: to develop and field advanced learning technologies and methodologies that improve medical education and training for healthcare teams and patients at the most affordable cost. Orlando was selected to headquarter the JPMO because it is already home to a large number of simulation companies and military acquisition offices, as well as the host of the largest modeling, simulation and training conference in the world. Irizarry said: “Orlando is truly the hub of simulation, and we benefit from the presence of Team Orlando. We need to stay close to industry to see what technologies are emerging.” Team Orlando is a collaborative alliance formed by U.S. leading military simulation commands, and supplemented, supported and augmented by academic and industry leaders in the modeling and simulation, human performance and training domains. In Florida, simulation is a nearly $5 billion industry, and all indications are that it will continue to grow in both the military and private sectors. www.MTI-dhp.com
THE LAND & AIRLAND SOLUTION
Like the A-10, some things are built to last.
For 15 years, MetaVR has been the primary supplier of 3D real-time visuals for the A-10 Full Mission Trainer. U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Robert D. Brooks, 9th Air Force command chief, in an A-10C Thunderbolt II ﬂight simulator at Moody Air Force Base, GA. (U.S. Air Force photo.)
Real-time screen capture is from MetaVR’s visualization system rendering 2 cm per-pixel 3D virtual terrain of Yuma Proving Ground, and is unedited except as required for printing. The real-time rendering of the 3D virtual world is generated by MetaVR Virtual Reality Scene Generator™ (VRSG™) at 60 Hz on a 4K resolution monitor. The terrain was built with 2 cm per-pixel imagery and 2 meter elevation posts. 3D model of the A-10C is from MetaVR’s 3D content libraries. © 2016 MetaVR, Inc. All rights reserved. MetaVR, Virtual Reality Scene Generator, VRSG, the phrase “Geospeciﬁc simulation with game quality graphics,” and the MetaVR logo are trademarks of MetaVR, Inc.