The US Army Joint Technology Center and Systems Integration Lab (JSIL) has ordered an additional 86 licenses for MetaVR’s Virtual Reality Scene Generator (VRSG) to provide visuals for continued rollout of US Air Force (USAF) MQ-9 REAPER remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) simulators, the company announced on 28 June.
The VRSG software is used in USAF’s MALET-JSIL Aircrew Trainer (MJAT) – a plug-and-play training capability that converts an operational MQ-9 ground control station (GCS) into a training simulator. Within the MJAT, VRSG is part of the Air Force Synthetic Environment for Reconnaissance and Surveillance (AFSERS) software, stimulating the tactical vehicle control software to emulate GCS functions: air vehicle control, payload control, weapons control, communications, video data transmission and mission planning. VRSG simulates the RPA camera payload by streaming real-time HD-quality H.264 video with KLV metadata.
With its force-multiplying ability to enable RPA operators to train on actual aircraft GCS hardware, using real sensor systems and interacting with networked Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) simulators, the embedded MJAT provides the USAF a flexible and cost-effective method to ‘train as it fights.’ The MJAT also provides RPA operators the ability to conduct simulation training as part of their qualification and continuation training.
VRSG shares a common baseline with Battlespace Simulations’ Modern Air Combat Environment (MACE), which is used by all MJAT simulators for scenario creation and fully-/semi-automated enemy force generation. This coupling enhances interoperability and correlation between MJAT and the large number of fielded VRSG-MACE-based JTAC simulators. This interoperability is critical in the simulated training environment, in order to emulate the joint force interaction and collaboration between REAPER sensor operators and JTACs during real-world missions.
“MJAT allows the US Air Force to maximize the use of its MQ-9 REAPER GCS at all times, to direct existing resource into deployed operations or training capacity in line with shifting demand,” commented MetaVR President, Garth Smith. “The MQ-9 REAPER joins the growing list of US military UAV/RPA training platforms we support, including the GRAY EAGLE, SHADOW, and AEROSONDE.”
These new licenses will extend the roll-out of the MJAT simulator across USAF MQ-9 REAPER GCS sites. To date 56 MJATs have been fielded by the Air Force.