The Pentagon Embraces Virtual Reality for Military Training
The Pentagon has committed itself to advance the use of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) solutions in building more adaptable and effective warfighting teams. VR and AR are expected to revolutionize military training in the coming years. The US Department of Defense’s (DoD’s) branches and agencies plan to leverage over US$20 million for gaming technology to improve simulation centres across its services, as per its FY 2024 budget proposal. These advanced systems are designed to effectively prepare troops for crucial tasks in the face of evolving battlefield conditions. An advisory from Booz Allen Hamilton has expressed keen interest in VR and AR technologies for developing a ‘mission rehearsal exercise’ that can effectively replicate a wide range of battlefield threats. This approach allows soldiers to build muscle memory, enhance their firing range skills, and adopt new equipment with ease. VR and AR technologies also enable operators to use organic weapons and attachments virtually, offering a cost-effective method of training while saving resources. With VR and AR becoming smaller and more portable, they are now expected to make real-time data analysis possible with the help of AI-powered engines and enhance human and machine performance, both in training and on the battlefield. Booz Allen has already rolled out several projects in line with military training activities, including a virtual reality-based joint firing observation training for the US Army. These efforts are aimed at increasing the lethality of military forces and staying ahead in the training realm. Booz Allen is also advancing extendable virtual environment tools with next-generation immersive training systems and simulations. Expert insights and analytics engines, such as the Extended Reality Analytics Engine and Modular Adaptive Synthetic Controller, are further empowering warfighters and commanders to integrate equipment into existing simulation systems. As military forces strive to complete tasks faster and more efficiently, virtual and augmented realities will contribute significantly to the evolution of realistic training systems. At I/ITSEC 2023, attendees are expected to witness new immersive systems and technologies that can support dynamic and challenging training conditions. The future of military training is on the verge of a major transformation, with VR and AR technologies paving the way for new and advanced training systems. At the helm of this effort are Booz Allen and its immersive training solutions that are considered the benchmark for the military industry as a whole.
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