Fort Carson soldiers test prototype helicopter trainers

Technology is helping soldiers train like never before.

“What we are doing with this synthetic training environment, is we are going provide the capability that commanders and soldiers to train on terrain that they are going to fight on,” said Maj. Gen. Maria Gervais, director of the Synthetic Training Environment Cross Functional Team.

Soldiers with the 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, were introduced to prototype helicopter trainers of the Reconfigurable Virtual Collective Trainer-Air (RVCT-A), a modern virtual training capability representing the Army’s range of aviation platforms.

The Army said they replicate the environment soldiers will train in. Once complete, the prototypes could make it possible for soldiers to train anywhere in the world.

“When we say it’s a game changer, we are going to see the increased use of simulations,” Gervais said. “That’s going to allow them to get the repetitions and the sets necessary to improve muscle memory and also competency, so when they go in a live environment they go in a higher level.”

Soldiers provided a user assessment to the Army and gave industry partners their feedback, so the prototypes could meet soldiers’ needs early on.

“We want to make sure we are getting the requirement right so that when we develop the soldiers and commanders will see the simulations will add readiness and add value to training,” Gervais said.

The RVCT-A, when integrated with other trainers, software, and interface tools, will comprise the Synthetic Training Environment. The STE will better replicate the operational environment, enable multi-domain training from squad to Army Service Component Command level, and be delivered wherever training needs to occur.

The STE Cross Functional Team, based in Orlando, Florida, is one of the Army’s eight recently established cross-functional teams designed to reduce the delivery time of new capabilities by integrating critical functions up front in the acquisition process.

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