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Bohemia Interactive Simulations develops VR-based flight training for U.S. Navy

ORLANDO, Fla. Bohemia Interactive Simulations (BISim), a global developer of military training and simulation software, is leveraging emerging virtual reality technologies and BISim’s Virtual Battlespace (VBS) to provide a high-fidelity virtual environment for flight training and mission rehearsal.

Working under contract for the Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division (NAWCTSD), BISim developed a prototype, VR technology-based F/A-18 Super Hornet training system designed to demonstrate the art of the possible. Compared to high-end simulators that rely on multimillion-dollar display environments and physical cockpits, emerging VR technologies cost an order of magnitude less.

Integrated with the VBS Blue whole-earth rendering engine, the solution drives an Oculus Rift CV1 to produce a 360-degree field-of-view immersive environment and an integrated Leap Motion sensor to track hand and arm movements, enabling natural interaction with a highly detailed, virtual crew station.

“We sought to leverage emerging VR technology to create a highly realistic yet affordable training solution that was portable enough to be transported for use in an aircraft carrier ready room,” says John Burwell, BISim’s business development director. “The results have exceeded expectations and show that the latest HMD and tracking technology have passed the threshold for widespread usability. Discomfort associated with previous application of VR technologies have been virtually eliminated.”

The F/A-18 avionics, weapon systems and flight model are faithfully simulated by Flex-Air from SA Simulations. The technology is standards-based and integrates with the Next Generation Threat System (NGTS) developed by NAVAIR that models both threat and friendly aircraft, ground and surface platforms, and their corresponding weapons and subsystems. The VR technology, which runs on a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) high-performance PC, incorporates a flight stick and throttle which serves as the sole physical interface to the system.

The program demonstrates that a wide variety of training requirements can be met with the technology as it is today. If offered as part of a blended learning solution, VR solutions can help to fill gaps between classroom-based instruction and full mission simulation and live training.

Founded in 2001, Bohemia Interactive Simulations (BISim) is a global software company at the forefront of simulation training solutions for military and civilian organizations. BISim utilizes the latest game-based technology and a large, experienced in-house team of engineers to develop high-fidelity, cost-effective training and simulation software products and components for military applications. Learn more at bisimulations.com.

Story Source: Intelligent Aerospace

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