Live, virtual and constructive (LVC) environments are playing greater roles in training, and are more the norm for strike groups getting underway for predeployment and certification exercises, and battle through realistic scenarios laced with virtual adversaries and faced off against real and virtual OPFORs including actual and simulated ships.
Ranges will be a key part as the Navy expands its use of LVC training and inclusion of more realism into scenarios. “When we take a strike group to sea, we are at sea conducting live training. We have live opposition forces out there, but they are augmented” with a blended presentation,and from the perspective of the training audience.
With the tactical displays – they can’t tell the difference between a live OPFOR and a virtual OPFOR presentation that stimulate their combat systems.”
It is critical that submarine commanders learn from the mistakes they make each day instead of waiting weeks or months for corrections.
An In-Stride Debriefing Team IDT participants in the air, surface and undersea domains understand each day what contributed to their success in finding the target submarine in that day’s serial, or if they didn’t find the submarine, what opportunities they had to detect the sub and why they missed their target.
In some cases, the issue could be as simple as operating a sonar at the wrong depth in the water column, where a simple fix could help the team find success the next day. In other cases, the lessons learned may be more complicated – but participants are finding out during the exercise while they can consult other experts and try to correct out their mistakes, whereas in other exercises they might not understand until weeks or months later what went wrong.
“Normally during most exercises you don’t get that sort of immediate feedback. So what we’re hoping to see is maybe at the beginning of the exercise the people shaking the rust off, if you will, to at the end of the exercise they are feeling really that they’ve gotten that feedback that they need in a real-time feedback loop such that their skillsets are improved.”
The capability is like a test where you can see the answer to the first question and know if you got it right or wrong before moving on to the second question.
That immediate feedback can help participants “see if you’ve improved and understand where maybe your mistakes are. And that’s incredibly important, because a lot of times in these exercises the ships, the assets don’t know if they got the answer right until weeks later after there’s been some feedback. So that real-time here’s the answer to Question 1, this is how you did, let’s take Question 2, is really important.”
For an example, say an exercise had nine submarines and 40 maritime patrol aircraft missions that were flown – but no surface ships at the time. All the data had to be collected when the aircraft came back from their missions, and in sorting through stacks and stacks of papers from the exercise, you realize that 75 percent of the missions were cold – the airplanes did not detect a submarine – and the aircrews would have no way of knowing if there was just no submarine in their operating area or if they missed it due to a mistake they had made.
“They were cold, and they don’t know why, if they missed anything.”
With just a little more information on the submarines’ actual tracks, you could figure out what detection opportunities were missed and, with perhaps with a little more information, why. For feedback, the snapshots are mapped out every interval or so, where the subs were versus anti-submarine warfare assets, and comments regarding what actions the crew took versus what they should have done.
“The idea is that the operations officer takes that aboard ship, gets the whole team around it and talks his way through it and picks up on what went well and what could go better, to accelerate the lessons learned process.”
The PBED process – planning, briefing, executing and debriefing – is above all else a way to improve proficiency quickly. “That is exactly what we’re doing here. So we receive the data, do the analysis and debrief.”
During tactical training, PBED process is enhanced by playback tools that allow operators to listen back to conversations on the bridge and re-look at what they could see on their screens at the time, to discuss in vivid detail what they knew and how they arrived at the decisions they made.
“Being part of Dynamic Manta, we’re constantly analyzing the tactics being used in each combined ASW exercise to provide lessons learned to all of the major players. During the debriefs, we have a chance to teach doctrine and help the participants from every community become a more lethal force.
Does the concept of wearing VR gear that digitally provides situational awareness create an upside that outweighs what it takes away for rifleman skills? With all these close-action skills, will augmented reality create more distraction than enhancement? Is it too early to push digital situational awareness all the way down to the soldier in maneuver units? Is the upside present?
How reliable are the sensors? Can the sensors be easily spoofed? Is it too early to push it all the way down to the individual soldier? A technologically advanced adversary will likely devote research to develop one-time use, tossable, simple, low-cost devices that can — in close combat — create spurious sensor data and derail VR. If the integrity of the sensor data is in question, it will likely force commanders to refrain from using digital tech.
A recent pilot program tested in the fleet to provide information systems training virtually to shipboard trainees proved promising enough that the Navy plans to implement it, enabling students to learn and work on the exact systems they will operate on their ships.
The Consolidated Afloat Networks and Enterprise Services CANES Training Virtual Environment will provide a workshop, using displayed network connection and linked up with an instructor for training that’s realistic, relevant and up-to-date with their particular ship’s systems.
Trainees and instructors have grappled with training that hasn’t replicated or fully reflected the onboard systems infrastructure that sailors encounter when on their ships, which can vary by ship. While the Navy had fielded to the workshop the same equipment the fleet uses, shipboard trainees haven’t always had the latest technology available.
“It’s hard to keep up with the technology refresh rate on all the things when you’re trying to modernize a fleet, so over time, the equipment we are training our CANES operators on became out of date and out of sequence with the majority of the fleet.” Often, “whatever trainees would see in the fleet would not exactly be what they would see” in the workshop simulator.
So the virtual training environment ensures that’s no longer the case, and trainees will learn from training virtually on systems with the look and feel of the same systems and versions installed aboard their ships.
Here’s how CANES TVE works: A trainee logs in and selects the particular version of CANES on their ship for whatever they are training to, and the instructor sets up the virtual environment. “It send a series of instructions to the network, and it would be built into the virtualized environment.
The servers that make up the CANES stack. It would be fed back to the trainee, and they would see the environment, and it would replicate and operate exactly like their version” on their ship.
The CANES TVE was ran through a pilot program with the forward-deployed naval force while both ships were pierside. They were able to bring up the instruction, with a facilitated instructor, and do that kind of background training that they couldn’t do otherwise.”
“Debrief is the most important part, that’s how the guys get all their lessons learned. So we construct the maps with detailed tracks, depth movements, detections, and commanders’ commentary on what tactical thinking drove their decisions.
The we got the chance to interact with the squadrons and the surface ships and submariners and poke them to talk about what they did and how they can improve.”
1. Transfer lessons into real life scenarios
For many construction companies, the problem with traditional training methods is . With VR, a construction company can create realistic scenarios in a 3D environment, making any skills learned all the more transferable. Consider the example of a crowded city street you can replicate the situations your workers will actually find themselves in. Trainees can develop essential skills through in-depth, vivid imagery.
Too often, we rely on assumptions, or even worse, accident reports to develop and assess our safety procedures. This approach is made even more ineffective by the fact that construction safety is often dynamic, based on the current project plan, available equipment, and working conditions/environment — all factors that probably should require refinements in on-site safety procedures.
With virtual reality training tools, we can construct scenarios that are specific to the job site or project planning scenarios and then realistically and safely test and evaluate those procedures. You can also test project plans to ensure that you are creating project plans that are realistic and can be safely executed.
2. Better Performance
Complex projects and problems for training can be simplified with difficulty levels and choices, easing the mind of both the trainer and the trainee. By training in a controlled and suitable environment, it means that trainees can perform to their best ability and focus on the task at hand rather than being concerned about the safety of other workers.
3. Ability to Create Riskier, More Realistic Training
Creating physical construction simulations has so many limitations. Try finding a training facility that can accommodate a superstructure, swinging tons of steel with an enormous crane, or pouring thousands of pounds of cement footing.
We build structures to reasonable heights, we swing simulated loads, and we role play or inject equivalent distractions. The limitation of the physical world, training budgets, and rational risk tolerances force us to train in environments that can only simulate a tiny fraction of the real risks and hazards of a real job site.
Virtual reality training allows us to push training exercises to the very edge of realism, up to and including hazards and actions. Simulating the actual hazards and results of following or not following safety procedures is one powerful advantage. We can practice most, if not all, of the hazardous activities that a worker will be expected to perform in accordance with the project plan. Also, they can practice these assignments under the same working conditions they will experience on the job site.
With VR training you can also introduce the realistic sensations of heights, distractions, stress, and environmental hazards. These intangible hazards are often missed in training because we simply can’t push the risk envelope.
4. Virtual Reality Training Allows for Endless Repetition
Repetition is the secret to mastery, a well-defined discipline can be achieved with hours of deliberate practice. In construction, that kind of repetition is prohibitively expensive, and consequently, the majority of that deliberate practice necessarily takes place on-the-job.
Virtual reality training has the power to make this level of deliberate practice much more, well, practical. The incremental cost of running a VR training scenario is de minimal, unlike more traditional training in the physical world. With VR training, workers get to strap on the VR headset and go at it again and again until they can accomplish the task flawlessly — and safely.
5. Training Can Be Customized for Specific Sites, Scenarios, and Standards
Every company and job site is unique. And no matter how consistent we try to be with construction safety, the real-world will always throw some curveballs our way.
Each project will likely have its own special challenges and problems because of location, unique requirements, weather, or just the complexity of the project itself. General construction safety training can leave workers exposed to or unfamiliar with local job hazards.
Virtual reality tools provide a huge advantage in the flexibility and costs to offer site- and company-specific construction training.
Physical training facilities rarely can be reconfigured to approximate any particular job site realistically. And most construction projects can’t absorb the lost time and additional cost of shutting down portions of a job site for training.
Necessarily, with increased customization comes increased cost, but these costs will almost certainly lower in comparison to those of closing a real-world job site for one or more days for training purposes, or the inherent risks of on-the-job training for the same purpose.
Further, different companies often have slightly different ways of doing things; specific protocols and standards that help define how a company operates. Premium VR training can accommodate these variations for a more tailored training experience.
6. Virtual Reality Can Make Training More Efficient
Many of the benefits that we have reviewed so far point to the overall efficiency and effectiveness of virtual reality over traditional, physical training environments. Virtual reality training allows for your construction training safety programs to be far more relevant, site-specific, frequent, and repeatable without significantly increasing cost or time. In fact, studies and real-world applications of VR Training show it drives down the time needed to learn the same information usually taught with more traditional training methods.
7. VR experiences can build extreme environments and situations
Virtual Reality Provides Practice in extreme Environment to Test and Evaluate Procedures. Firefighters and military personnel need to learn how to respond in dangerous situations without risking their lives. , allowing users to test and learn without severe consequences.
This not only eliminates risk, liability, and injury; it also allows users to more easily train and master procedures, so, when the time comes, they’re prepared for the real deal. Added bonus: With greater safety, comes fewer costs.
8. Behavioral Interaction/Response
Workers get excited for new impressions. Virtual reality immerses students into a realistic environment that makes the experience really memorable and the educational process more enjoyable. VR displays different places around the world. Trainees showed more interest and engagement in learning about the locations they visited virtually.
Behavioral skills should also be taught, like learning how to interact in a group. In the VR experience, the participants see only a representation of other students. Interaction with digital avatars makes such sessions easier. At the same time, a carefully written plot adds real value to the experience.
9. Control Movement of Objects
What helps us connect with our environment in the real world? It is the ability to easily touch and feel the objects around us, isn’t it? But what happens in a digital world? For long, we have relied on keyboards to facilitate this sense of interactivity. But now, with virtual reality, we can gain a more natural sense of interaction by moving the objects around and by even controlling data streams. You can gain a deeper analysis of data quickly and easily to make faster decisions and improve employee efficiency.
10. Virtual Reality Training Research Indicates Higher Retention
Sitting through the class, passing the test, and getting the certificate is of no value if you can’t recall your training when you face the situation in the field. Knowledge retention is critical, especially for specialized training that focuses on protocols that will only be encountered occasionally, if ever in real life but which have to be performed more or less perfectly when they are.