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A Holodeck Videogame Designed to Train Soldiers

February 4, 2014 | Telepresence Options


Story and images by Allen McDuffee / Wired

If the Army is going to keep up with military readiness pressures while also seeing a reduction in troop size and stagnant budgets, then it's going to need more cutting-edge videogames.

Last week, the Army Contracting Command issued a�Sources Sought�notice for companies interested in demonstrating "mature technologies" for military training. Northrop Grumman thinks its Virtual Immersive Portable Environment (VIPE) Holodeck just may be the answer.

Using commercial, off-the-shelf hardware combined with gaming technology, the�VIPE Holodeck 360 degree virtual training system provides users with a high-fidelity immersive environment with a variety of mission-centric applications, including simulation and training, mission rehearsal and data visualization. The VIPE Holodeck�can support live, virtual and constructive simulation and training exercises including team training, cultural and language training and support for ground, air and remote platform training.�Off-the-shelf technology keeps costs down while also making future upgrades and maintenance easy to perform and affordable, says Northrop.

Last year, the VIPE Holodeck took first place in the Federal Virtual Challenge for the navigation category, an annual competition led by the�U.S. Army Research Laboratory's�Simulation and Training Technology�Center, for the system's Kinect integration navigation sensor, which gives users the ability to crawl, walk, run, stop, jump, move side to side in the immersive environment.

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