The Future of Training Blends Real and Virtual Worlds
In the film Top Gun, U.S. Navy pilots in training go head to head as adversaries with Maverick pitted against Viper and Jester. These red team-blue team exercises have been the pinnacle of fighter pilot training for decades. Now, technology has advanced so that the real world collides with the virtual world to provide more effective training.
Lockheed Martin is developing training environments where a pilot in the air flies alongside a wingman in a simulator to fight against adversaries. The key to blending the real and virtual worlds is integrating live, virtual and constructive, or LVC, entities into one shared training environment.
Since completing a proof of concept with an F-16 in a live flight demonstration in 2014, Lockheed Martin has continued to expand and test increasingly complex scenarios.
“Our next challenge is applying live, virtual and constructive to new platforms, scaling for large force exercises and extending the environment across air, land and sea,” says Dave Scott, vice president of Training and Logistics Solutions Business Development at Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training. “We see LVC as the solution for affordable high-end training to help our customers increase mission readiness.”
To evolve the F-35 Training System, for instance, Lockheed Martin is now working to connect F-35 Full Mission Simulators to a number of military training networks, enabling F-35 pilots to train across locations and with other platforms. This Distributed Mission Training (DMT) capability for the F-35 creates interoperability across military platforms for continuation training and large force exercises, all while presenting a train-as-you-fight environment.
“In the virtual environment, we can exercise the full capabilities of the platform in order to realistically train pilots in areas such as advanced stealth, integrated avionics, sensor fusion and network-enabled operations,” says Scott. “DMT is a critical step forward in advancing the F-35 Training System toward a fully integrated LVC environment that maximizes the benefits.”