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U.S. Marines use VR technology for combat training

2019-03-13 13:15

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WASHINGTON, March 12 (Xinhua) -- Virtual reality technology became a new way to train soldiers' combat skills while saving a large amount of training cost, American global aerospace and defense technology company Northrop Grumman said on Tuesday.

During a military training, a facility named Distributed Training Center (DTC) at Joint Base Langley-Eustis in the State of Virginia replicated scenarios in battle zones where warfighters are deployed, while each virtual scenario was designed and created based on mission demands.

Within the virtual scenario created by DTC, ground forces such as Marine infantry could train their battle skills by cooperating with air force crew like F-15E jet fighter pilots, according to Northrop Grumman.

"During two training events, eight F-15E aircrew based at Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho trained with four Marines from Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state via the DTC," said Northrop Grumman.

Such kind of training was named "close air support" (CAS). In military tactics, CAS is an air strike carried out by aircraft against a hostile target that is posing major threat to ground troops.

Northrop Grumman said that CAS training closely replicated scenarios in current battlefields, while providing virtual but constructive training at "a fraction of the cost" of a real training.

"The Marines were impressed with the high fidelity training and said the customized scenarios felt like real life," said Martin Amen, director of secure network operations of Northrop Grumman.

Northrop Grumman said that the DTC had provided training for the U.S. Air Force for nine years, but this was the first time Marines used the DTC to train for their missions.

Headquartered in West Falls Church, Virginia, Northrop Grumman was also a top-tier arms trader in the world. In 2018, the company ranked 118th on the Fortune 500 list.

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