Virtual Combat Training comes closer to Reality

by Miguel M
The article that I chose to talk about in this blog is about the new virtual training aid called “VirTra”. VirTra stands for Virtual Training which is used through military and commercial training. Now I used this article for this blog because it reminds me of the emphasis of project initiation because when this system was built it identified the markets that the system wanted to be used in. According to PC magazine “VirTra Systems markets combat, marksmanship, and situational awareness/judgmental firearms training systems to military agencies such as the U.S. Air Force, and to national and international law enforcement agencies” (PR Newswire 2004). The beauty of this program is that it can use all five senses to create a near-realistic experience whether it is a shooting experience or a flying experience. The goal of this is being able to make a very costly and dangerous experience cheap and safe. Now the beauty of these systems is that they cover a range of plans from economical to a fully immersed and high-tech plan; they have an electronic style range where you shoot at a projection from afar with electronic weapons and there is also the full 300 degrees virtual realm.
Now, the amazing thing about this technology is that it is all done without any headsets. This capability is provided to them with their acquisition of the Immersa-Dome technology, which keep in mind that it only works with the 300 degree option. According to PR Newswire, “VirTra Systems’ Immersa-Dome is the world’s first-ever individual, multi-sensory, projection-based virtual reality system. The Immerse-Dome utilizes a domed-shaped screen, which comfortably surrounds the viewer and delivers a high-resolution virtual reality experience without a headset. Through the unique design, the Immersa-Dome offers an amazing view of a photorealistic environment with resolution and field-of-view nearly equaling human vision itself” (PR Newswire 2004). Now this kind of technology is a big leap to what we currently have because the way this system works is quite phenomenal because in a matter of a few years the technology has blown up into a real amazing level. According to Bob Ferris, VirTra System’s President says, “Furthermore, real-time tracking of the trainee allows more natural interaction within the environment. Essentially, this technology enables trainees to look around corners or over cover, and brings us one step closer to holographic or “holo-deck” type simulation conceptualized by the popular Star Trek television series.” (PR Newswire 2007)
The floor of the V-300 model functions as the center of the arena so as the character moves through the scenario and the beauty of this training aid is it can be used in multiple ways as you can use the inner screens and the outside screens so there can be five lines of fires being used at one time. Now with the smelling aspect of the training, in an emergency scenario with burning rubble, the scent can be replicated and produced in the building so it creates a real virtual reality to any trainee using the simulator. With the feeling sense the weapons being used during the simulator create a recoil feel to it and you also get magazines to use to reload. The visual aspect of this training aid is that with the Immersa-Dome I creates a realistic world as close to the real thing and with the editing aid it provides the instructor can create a variety of scenarios ranging from an Iraqi showdown to a standoff in an airport, the program allows you to choose a scenario that is already programmed or a random scenario that they want to create.
This is also one of the best tools to use for training because when it comes to combat training they always emphasize to train as you fight and what better way to create a virtual world that is the same as their real world. Also what this creates for the trainees is confidence in their abilities to react on any scenario they may encounter because it may be a possibility that they encounter it in the real world, it also creates a sense of enjoyment of their time spent in training because when people enjoy their training they remember their training more vividly and without hesitation. Now even though this may seem to people like a game it is that but it is more than just a game it is a good practice tool and one of the cheapest and safest way to train our police forces and combat arms forces.

-VirTra systems exhibits world’s most advanced 3-D immersive dismounted infantry training simulator. (2007, Nov 27). PR Newswire. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/453295656?accountid=10357
-VirTra systems featured in PC magazine. (2004, Jul 29). PR Newswire. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/444561724?accountid=10357
-VirTra systems announces immersa-dome technology. (2004, May 03). PR Newswire. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/451715136?accountid=10357

22 thoughts on “Virtual Combat Training comes closer to Reality”

  1. I think that this is a really cool piece of technology. To allow military trainees and police force recruits to do run through without any danger is great for preparing for real life situations. Ultimately, I think the best money-making opportunity with this though is in video games. People would pay big bucks to use this for Call of Duty!

    1. I agree once this type of technology becomes available to the civilian world and is cheap to acquire there will be one of these in every house because this will be the next step closer to making the virtual world a little bit more realistic.

  2. I thought it was fascinating how ViTra Systems offers simulators designed to train law enforcement and military in so many scenarios including:

    Vehicle Checkpoints
    CQB
    Patrolling
    Suicide Bombers
    Threat Recognition
    Key Leader Engagements
    Green on Blue incidents
    Active Shooters
    Ambushes
    Court/jail
    Disturbances
    Domestic Violence
    EDPs
    High Risk Entries
    Hostage Situations
    Off-Duty
    Skill Drills
    Suicidal Subjects
    Suspect Contacts
    Suspicious Subjects
    Traffic Stops
    Great presentation!

    1. Heck yeah I was quite amazed when I took part of this software at how far it can go with its scenarios cause literally it can recreate anything.

  3. WOW this is cool. I think this is a piece of technology everyone in government agencies should use. It will give them somewhat close to the “real” thing. This software having the ability can and will save lives.

  4. Do they use this as a form of examination as well? Like for example, if the user gets shot a certain amount of times, he would fail the exam and wouldn’t be allowed to go on the field. I think that would be a better application and definitely would save a lot of lives as well as having better prepared soldiers and police officers.

    1. As in a swift reaction testing, they can use it like that but nobody is prefect so allowing them to get shot and reviewing what they did wrong should be looked as a reward not a punishment.

  5. What a great way of training! Not only with the smell aspect but I think it is very important for the trainees to feel the bullet shot (as you showed in the video clip) because it really helps them gain a more real life experience. Training is one thing but when you are put into the actual situation is another. So I definitely agree with you. I think it is great that the trainees can gain confidence by using VirTra.

    1. Heck yes since this technology allows the closest virtual training it can be looked more into to get us one step closer to cerebral training.

  6. I can’t wait til they find an affordable way to implement this into everyone’s home. This will revolutionize the gaming industry for all First Person Shooters and I guarantee this will sell in the market.

    1. Sir whenever this type of technology comes to the market, you will expect to be the first one in line to get me one of those, rain or shine, I will plow my way through all of the other shoppers so i can get one.

  7. This is an awesome piece of technology. As a gamer I cant wait for this to be implemented in video games and be able to be put into people’s homes. Interesting read and I am glad law enforcfemnt as well as the military is putting this to use already.

  8. Not only does this type of technology help the law enforcement world, but it’s also a big step for the entertainment industry as well. This type of technology will eventually make it into people’s homes, and I can’t wait for that to happen.

    It’s good that officers can experience real problems first hand without being in actual danger.

  9. I believe this VirTra system is something that is very cool because it is a leader in companies being able to reduce resources and have computerized simulations and results such as how many pharmaceutical companies are using computer simulations to test their medicine. I feel like simulation technology is something that is very important and this product is a trendsetter for the future.

  10. I agree with swnorum this would great to see implemented in video games. I have a lot of friends in law enforcement and have yet to hear them part take in this. This would be a great tool for them though especially when a lot of training is needed for their job field.

  11. It is one of way to practice some kind of designed situation in simulator like pilots flying the aircraft. For pilots flying simulation, they can control many of elements to simulate many different weather conditions, and let computer to calculate the reactions that aircraft might be. And so, avoiding the pilot error. However, human beings emotion and reaction are more complex and complicated. I am not sure if the suspects do the surprised move, sometimes for new and non-experienced law enforcement personnel will make wrong decision to expose entire team in danger. (Sometimes, people will just copy whatever they learned from training which might not applicable on the certain case.)

  12. When i saw your presentation,for a second i thought of this as an old technology. I felt that this technology had been out for a while because many old movies (even some in the late 90’s ) show this first person interactive technology in a slightly different form (for example through the use of a helmet ). This goes to show the amount of work that would be needed if this was to expand into other forms of use, like television our gaming. I feel like both of these uses of this technology are possible but the time for them to fully develop and reach the general market, that I believe will take quite some time.

    1. Haha so when I saw your post i was kinda excited to be then one that got the amazing read send me more XP and yes the technology has been out for a while for example the arcade game of Beachhead but i took this as an idea of the technology that has helped games like duck hunt and other games of that sort had helped training be safer and cheaper.With some time and improvements the technolgy will be available again but in better format.

  13. The military has long seen the usefulness of virtualizing combat. In a much simpler, and less expensive method, the U.S. Army has been using video games as recruitment tools. America’s Army is a first person shooter game that is published and developed by the U.S. Army.

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