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Thales introduces enhancements to weapons training, tactical engagement simulators

The Airsoft surrogate Glock pistol that Thales Training and Simulation has integrated into its Gladiator laser-based TESS. There are no additional attachments to the basic form factor. (Giles Ebbutt)

Thales Training and Simulation unveiled new capabilities for its live and indoor training systems at the Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference (I/ITSEC) 2023 in Orlando.

The main addition to the company's Gladiator tactical engagement simulation system (TESS) is a laser-capable surrogate pistol, enabling those who have a handgun as a primary or secondary weapon to participate fully in live laser-based TESS training. The weapon is integrated into the Gladiator dismounted TESS harness.

Jan Uebersax, head of operational marketing for Thales Training and Simulation, told Janes that a key consideration was that the weapon had no additional attachments so that it can be holstered and used in a natural fashion. The solution integrates the instrumentation electronics, a battery, and a laser projector into an Airsoft pistol and it includes a compressed air-driven recoil simulator.

Uebersax said the first weapon model to be developed was a compact Glock handgun, which was the “shortest available on the market”. He explained that this had been selected so that the solution could then be modified to fit larger weapons and that versions had been developed “for HK [Heckler & Koch] weapons and others”. He added that an advantage of using an Airsoft weapon was that there were no security considerations related to its storage.

“The customer is pretty happy,” he said, adding that this was a police organisation.

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