Virtual Simulations in Gunnery and Crew Procedure Training

Virtual Simulations in Gunnery and Crew Procedure Training
2004: Early days

2004: The early days of desktop gunnery training – Oksbøl, Denmark

Over the past ten years eSim Games has expanded its original armor simulation game into a full-featured training solution which is currently employed by nine armies on four continents. Steel Beasts Professional is a PC based virtual simulation, suited for the training and education of crews of armored fighting vehicles in a wide spectrum of everyday training situations.

It covers basic and advanced gunnery training for currently fourteen different AFV fire control systems, suitable for gunnery and crew procedure training. All this is being presented in a tactical context of up to battalion level task force strength. This is provided by a powerful yet easy to manage constructive simulation. It has semi-automated forces for realistic medium and high intensity combat scenarios involving armored and mechanized forces.

 

A Steel Beasts Pro classroom in Finalnd

2006: Training Facility in Parolanummi, Finland

Gunnery training is supported by using 3rd party control handle replicas, or by integration of the software into new or existing crew trainer cabins. In cooperation with the Danish Army a series of new crew trainer cabins have been developed for the Leopard 1A5 and 2A5. New cabins are under construction for the CV90/35. Existing containerized simulators have been successfully retrofitted with Steel Beasts Professional. In close cooperation with its customers eSim Games has developed a solution where a microcontroller is programmed to transmit the system state of the simulator cabin to Steel Beasts Pro and to receive status updates from the simulated fire control system to activate control lights or to cue other system events in the hardware. This basis is currently being used for similar projects that will be delivered in the future.

 

 

Close-up of desktop trainer station

A Leopard 2 gunner’s control panel replic

Each exercise ends with the after action review (AAR). The AAR starts with presenting the instructor with a pre-screening of gunnery performance which can be filtered and reviewed for each student to identify key elements like laser range finder usage, aim at the moment of weapon release, impact location analysis, and eventually the procedures to correct the aim. Once that the pre-screening is complete the AAR for the whole audience can start (or be saved for later). Eventual comments on the pre-screened events can now be seen as well as all tactical events and the flow of forces in the map view as well as the virtual environment.

Finally, Steel Beasts Professional creates a tabular overview over the logistical footprint of an exercise as well as a complete and detailed event list which can be accessed with a normal web browser or a spreadsheet calculation which allows the customer to pull the relevant information into a training database for further statistical analysis.

Crew Trainer Cabins (Holstebro)

2009: Crew Trainer Cabins in Holstebro, Denmark

 

As a desktop trainer Steel Beasts Professional offers a wide range of functionality at an unprecedented price point of under 10,000.- EUR per workplace, including PC hardware and gunnery handle replica. This enables to use the solution as a supplement to traditional simulator training for better crew preparation prior to simulator rotations, and better retainment of acquired know-how and skills after simulator training, or even during deployment where patrol and guard duty might otherwise result in a deterioration of skills in medium and high intensity combined arms operations.

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