modern battle space I recently had the opportunity to attend Interservice/Interindustry Training, Simulation, and Education Conference (I/ITSEC)Held in Orlando at the end of November, this annual conference is a preeminent training and simulation event that brings new technologies to the way combatants, medical personnel, and other tactical operators are trained across industries and professions. It shows you how to bring about a revolution.
One of the trends that was the focus of major discussion at this year’s I/ITSEC was the use of the Metaverse and Augmented Reality (XR). This trend was seen everywhere, from the numerous sessions covering Metaverse and XR technology to the many virtual reality (VR) devices flooding the show floor. Attendees got a glimpse of what it’s like to skydive, fly an airplane, and operate a weapons system. , more.
Although XR is seen primarily as a consumer technology by the average American, the I/ITSEC’s focus on XR is a testament to how this intuitive technology is being deployed in business and the military. indicates whether Discussions at I/ITSEC also revealed that innovations from military industry partners will help further strengthen the role of his XR technology in future military training.
“It’s important to get meaningful abilities into the hands of warriors as soon as possible.” —Major General Sean Bratton
Jack Bergman, co-chair of the Congressional Modeling and Simulation Caucus and Michigan First District Representative, commented on the idea:
Innovation in XR and virtual training has never come at a more critical time. I/ITSEC attendees and speakers shed light on the new challenges facing the U.S. military: the re-emergence of nearly equal adversaries as threats to U.S. defense and national security. Did.
With the emergence of more capable and advanced threats, it is imperative to prepare new military personnel as quickly and efficiently as possible. Maj. Gen. Sean Bratton, Commander, Space Training and Preparedness Command, U.S. Space Force, said of this importance: And XR can play a key role in that move forward.
What are the Metaverse and XR?
The metaverse is a virtual reality space where users can interact with computer-generated environments and other users.
“XR makes the invisible visible and the invisible visible.” — Joanne Archer
There is a common misconception that XR is the metaverse. However, XR is really a means of accessing the metaverse. XR is the interaction of human systems with a mix of real and virtual environments, generated by computer technology and wearables. XR includes various technologies such as Augmented Reality (AR), VR, and Mixed Reality (MR).
JoAnn Archer, senior research associate at Design Interactive, summarizes XR:
AR is a virtual component layered over real-world experiences to provide information and guidance. This allows you to seamlessly blend the real and virtual worlds while keeping people engaged in the moment. VR is a computer-generated simulation of her three-dimensional image or environment that can be interacted with in a deceptively realistic or physical way by someone using special electronic equipment such as headgear or gloves with sensors. Finally, MR is the bridge between the real world and the augmented world.
Leveraging these technologies individually or in combination, the military can provide immersive training and simulation experiences to better prepare combatants for what they will experience on the battlefield. This is why the military is eyeing the power of the Metaverse and XR technology. But these technologies do more than just provide a realistic, immersive training experience.
Generation Z and beyond training
As pointed out by military times, There is a problem with the recruitment rate of military personnel due to the training crisis, especially among the younger generation. “The Army missed his recruitment target of about 15,000 recruits in 2022, falling short of his target by 25% at a time when each service was struggling to meet its benchmarks.”
“The training crisis is having trouble retaining military personnel. The Metaverse and AR will help us get out of the hole.” —Dr. Peter Squire
The typical generation for adoption is Generation Z, but the military should consider Generation Alpha for the future.
Classroom training that worked in the 20th century will not work in the 21st century. PowerPoint slides are completely useless for this new generation. Military training should reflect this fact. It is important to keep recruits engaged with training materials not only to improve learning, but also to maintain interest in the military. The problem here is how to meet new employees where they are. The answer is gaming through XR technology.
Program Officer for Human Performance, Training and Education, Dr. Peter Squire, said of the issue: Metaverse and AR can help you get out of the hole. ”
These new generations grew up playing video games, so with XR, we want them to have an immersive experience and feel more prepared on the battlefield while doing what they know best. can learn. Her CTIO for the U.S. Space Force, Lisa Costa, spoke about how important gaming is to a new generation of recruits. She said, “His 86% of aviators and guardians under the age of 34 are gamers.”
Better. Faster. more capable.
Not only does the Metaverse and XR keep recruits engaged, but it also helps train them faster and prepare them for the battlefields of the future. This is something we’ve already witnessed in the private sector, where the inclusion of her XR in their training programs has made a huge difference to their employees.
“Combining multiple educational modalities facilitates a transition in resilient training to achieve contextually relevant training in cognitive, psychomotor and affective skills.”— Joan Archer
Kay Stanney, CEO of Design Interactive, cites Boeing as an example, stating that “Boeing reduced training time by 75% by implementing VR technology.”
With XR technology, the training process can be adapted to the user, creating a more customized experience based on individual progress. If recruits are falling behind on a particular task and need additional training, XR’s portability allows them to practice anywhere, anytime. This convenience helps every team and his members be ready on the battlefield.
Using the Metaverse also helps develop cognitive muscle memory, which is important for military personnel during mission rehearsals. In fact, according to Costa, “he is 22 times more likely to remember what was taught in narrative form.”
Even just using a combination of real-world and XR training can make a big impact. According to Archer, “The combination of many educational modalities facilitates a transition in resilience training to achieve contextually relevant training in cognitive, psychomotor, and emotional skills.” We are connected,” reinforcing this notion.
Train continuously in stressful situations
Imagine having to train in extremely stressful or even dangerous scenarios like having to learn how to properly throw a grenade or defuse a bomb. Ensuring the safety of military personnel is essential, but so is simulating real-world, high-stress situations to ensure they are prepared. XR and the Metaverse could literally be the key to getting the most out of both worlds.
“Gamers are 25 times more likely to see objects they’ve previously seen in high-stress situations.” — Lisa Costa
Of this importance, Costa said, “We need to train how to fight and fight the way we trained.
Training in VR allows military personnel to train and understand dangerous equipment without fear of injury. XR games also help trainees hone critical decision-making skills in stressful situations without putting their lives at risk. Costa said of the effectiveness of high-stress XR gaming:
XR training is also used in other high-stress scenarios such as Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC). TCCC involves helping wounded soldiers and casualties on the battlefield. This requires medical assistance in stressful situations. This training is so important and effective that it should be taken by all members of the military, even those not in combat.
With the help of AR, military team members can learn how to provide life-saving medical assistance while simulating the high-stress environment of a battlefield.
The Metaverse and XR in the Future of Military Training
I/ITSEC has demonstrated the value and benefits of various military services leveraging Metaverse and XR technology for training. Metaverse and XR technology help prepare current and future generations of military personnel to be battlefield ready.
This concept is especially important now with the large number of gamers in the military right now, and this number is sure to grow in the years to come. Adopting XR and the Metaverse to get this next-generation fighter on the battlefield faster and keeping it engaged in training is essential.
For more information on adapting simulation training across the military, click here.