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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 June 2016

BAE Systems’ Virtual Focus

At Eurosatory 2016, visitors to the BAE Systems stand were able to experience first-hand the method by which the company’s engineers use virtual reality (VR) to design and test new parts and assemblies without the extended and expensive process of manufacturing test components.

Using the Terrier Combat Engineer vehicle as a demonstrator, the company demonstrated, using a VR headset, how engineers can “see” the intended fit of a new component or assembly – and even “touch” it as the software superimposes the user’s hands on virtual equipment. Many engineering design issues have already been resolved in this way, and engineers have been able to highlight and resolve potential engineering, maintenance and even operational issues at a much earlier stage in the development process.

BAE Systems has also worked with soldiers to test changes in VR and uses their feedback to improve the design in real time. The company sees huge potential in using VR to provide better, more cost-effective training for their vehicles – in both operational and maintenance roles – a system already in use on the British Army’s CHALLENGER 2s.

We are also looking at how VR can help armoured soldiers on operation by providing a better feel for the battlefield. This should them react to threats more quickly, giving an advantage,” John Puddy, Technology Lead for BAE Systems Land (UK), said.