SFC Paul Ray Smith Center in Orlando Providing Leading Technology to SFC Jared C. Monti Hall Mission Simulation Center

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Soldiers are getting realistic training that incorporates real components with a virtual environment to offer a state- of-the-art, full-spectrum fire support training solution. The first of its kind, augmented virtuality simulator goes directly from research to training military service members in the new SFC Jared C. Monti Hall Mission Simulation Center in Fort Sill, OK.

The U.S. Army Research Lab's SFC Paul Ray Smith, Simulation & Training Technology Center (STTC), in Orlando, Fla. delivered some ground-breaking technology to Fort Sill, Oklahoma’s newly dedicated SFC Jared C. Monti Hall Mission Simulation Center last month. The center in OK was named for Medal of Honor recipient SFC Jared C. Monti. The STTC was also named for a fallen hero and Medal of Honor recipient who paid the ultimate sacrifice in Iraq during the first wave into Baghdad in April 2003. Both Soldiers are remembered for their leadership and focus on training. The Monti Hall simulation center will house the latest simulation technologies to prepare Joint Fires Warfighters for future missions.

The STTC project, called the Call For Fire Trainer - Augmented Virtuality or CFFT-AV system, provides Soldiers realistic training that incorporates real components with a virtual environment to offer a state- of-the-art, full-spectrum fire support training solution. The first of its kind, augmented virtuality simulator goes directly from research to training military service members. It is a streamlined solution for training close air support and the application of joint fires and effects in the contemporary operational environment.

The simulator provides innovative solutions to some of the most difficult training challenges facing fire support trainers. It was built by Creative Technologies, Inc., under contract to the Army's STTC. The 49 foot square simulator has an optical see-through head-mounted display that allows users to simultaneously work with physical equipment while being immersed in a virtual training environment for both initial and currency training.

The CFFT-AV system features an innovative approach to the production of simulated military equipment. The module’s binoculars, range finders and laser designators were developed from light imaging detection and ranging (LIDAR) scans of real equipment with the resulting data sets used to produce 3D printouts. The 3D copies were then instrumented to replicate the knobs, switches, and buttons of the equipment to provide an accurate user experience along with device control states for the simulation.

Pat Garrity, STTC Chief Engineer, for the project stated, “with this system, we have taken a giant leap in validating the viability of incorporating augmented virtuality into our training programs." The CFFT-AV system, which began as a research project less than 11 months ago, leads to new opportunities for future training systems.
Creative Technologies, Inc. (CTI) President and CEO, James Korris, said, "CTI is dedicated to providing innovative, immersive solutions to its customers. The delivery of CFFT-AV was particularly exciting as we put the latest technologies together and accelerated the project to meet the Monti Hall ceremonial opening in mid-August."

The CTI team was also contracted by Fort Sill to relocate to the new simulation center, reassemble and upgrade some of the other training systems at Fort Sill, including the the Air Defense Artillery’s Engagement Control Station Simulator and the Joint Fires & Effects Trainer System , a premier training capability which Korris and his team delivered through their previous work at the Institute for Creative Technologies.

About CTI.
Creative Technologies Inc. is at the forefront of immersive, cognitive simulation development for government and industry. CTI provides ongoing support to upgrade, improve, and sustain the systems that we make. http://www.cretecinc.com

A small, woman-owned business, CTI’s leadership is drawn from the US Army’s virtual reality research center (the Institute for Creative Technologies), prior military service and industry. CTI's management team has a reputation for ground-breaking and award-winning applications and content in the defense space. With headquarters in the heart of Hollywood, CTI draws on and leverages the talents and technology of the entertainment industry.

About U.S. Army STTC: The Sergeant First Class Paul Ray Smith Simulation and Training Technology Center is embedded at the core of Team Orlando’s modeling and simulation training corridor. The STTC is a subordinate organization under the Research, Development and Engineering Command’s Army Research Laboratory that engages with other services, academia and industry to research and mature critical simulation and training technologies to increase Warfighter battlefield readiness and performance.

The center’s research focus is technology for the future--What are the requirements five to ten years down the road? Active investigation and development is taking place in the areas of intelligent tutors, immersive learning environments, human agent teaming, dismounted Soldier training, virtual world technologies, mobile applications (Apps) and medical simulators and simulations.

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