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MILITARY TECHNOLOGY (MILTECH) is the world's leading international tri-service defence monthly magazine in the English language. MILITARY TECHNOLOGY is "Required Reading for Defence Professionals". Follow us on Twitter: MILTECH1

26 November 2015

Tactical Semi-Autonomous Forces for LVC

From Monday, 30 November 2015, the Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division (NAWCTSD) is showcasing some of the latest military training technologies at I/ITSEC 2015.

Many of the state of the art training systems on display during the four day conference are projects of NAWCTSD, headquartered in Orlando's Central Florida Research Park, located adjacent to the University of Central Florida. NAWCTSD is the Navy's principal centre for modelling, simulation, and training systems technologies. The centre develops training systems for all of the Navy's warfare areas. NAWCTSD employs about one thousand Central Florida engineers, scientists, and support personnel, and awards more than $1 billion in contracts to private industry each year.

Navy pilot training requires realistic, simulated, friendly and enemy forces. Today’s Semi-Automated Force (SAF) tools enable one instructor to role-play multiple entities, but SAF applications are labour intensive to operate and expensive to develop and maintain. This effort is developing tools that will enable end-users to rapidly author and modify SAF behaviours and to reduce operator workload by automatically adapting SAF behaviours to instructor intent.

Using Trainable Automated Forces (TAF), end-users create new SAF tactics by selecting recorded examples of the tactic from an archive of recorded exercises. Recordings of either live or virtual exercises may be used. New tactics are automatically integrated within behaviour models that are aware and responsive to the tactical and pedagogical situation. A Training Executive Agent (TXA) monitors scenario progress and adapts SAF enemy and friendly behaviour to meet the goals of the training scenario.

This process is costly, and does not efficiently adapt over time to the needs of end-users, new platforms, or changes in Tactics, Techniques and Procedures (TTPs). Specialised personnel requirements result in high support costs over the life-cycle of the product.

Trainable Automated Forces (TAF) supports Live/Virtual/Constructive training by generating a constructive entity to stand in for a human role player in response to constraints on manpower or aircraft readiness. TAF works by recognising the tactics used by a pilot in a previously-recorded live or virtual exercise, and generating a constructive entity that simulates the pilot’s tactics. The TAF constructive entity is not just a replay of recorded trajectory; instead, TAF configures a generalised behaviour model from NGTS (Next Generation Threat System) so it will respond in a similar manner to the human pilot when it encounters similar situations, but will respond differently if the training mission unfolds along a different path.

The Training Executive Agent (TXA) is a software agent that supports operators and training by automatically adapting scenario execution. It reasons and acts in accordance with the instructor-define training scenario context. The TXA monitors the dynamic scenario and maps its progression to instructor intent. When appropriate, the TXA will enact a behaviour change in the echelon, group, or individual entity’s behaviour in order to better match instructor intent. The TXA is founded on dynamic tailoring and supervisory control technologies.

For more information please see MILITARY TECHNOLOGY #12/2015, available at  I/ITSEC 2015 on booth #453; and frequently check back for more NEWS FROM THE FLOOR.