Training with live ammunition is a critical element of ground forces training, but live-fire training has an inescapable risk factor and there is a small but steady worldwide casualty rate from live-fire training accidents. The risks can be mitigated by careful planning of danger areas and supervision, but the former is a laborious manual process and the latter is not infallible.
SimCentric Technologies has developed a system that it said automates the planning process and can be integrated with the tracking capability of instrumented training areas to provide safety information in near real time. The system, called SAF-Foresight, is the result of a three-year collaborative project with the Australian Defence Force (ADF), with a spiral development process since the initial version was presented at the Australian Army Innovation Day in November 2017.
Gareth Collier, SimCentric vice president for strategy, told
at the 2019 Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation, and Education Conference (I/ITSEC) in Orlando in December, that the focus was to reduce the risk of fratricide in collective live fire training while maintaining realism. “The more realistic you make it the narrower your safety buffers become,” he said.
A screenshot showing the 3D live-fire range planning process using SAF-Foresight. (SimCentric)
The system has two modes: planning and live. Planning is based on whole earth rendered mapping which can zoom into military specification maps. Shapefile boundaries show range danger areas that can be inserted based on a pull-down ammunition type template generator from a library based on approved doctrine. “You can do more accurately in about one minute what takes about 15 minutes to draw by hand,” claimed Collier.