Promotes New Military Training Aids at AUSA
Meggitt Training Systems (MTS) has shared with MONS a number of enhancements to the company’s Firearms Training System (FATS) product line. The FATS ensemble includes a large screen which displays a specific situation to the trainee; such as the visual replication of a firing range, or the interior of a building. It also comprises the computer system to run the software, and a representative firearm for the trainee, which uses a compressed air supply or a compressed air magazine with the trainee firing blasts of air to simulate the firing effects of the weapon. The FATS computer then records where the trainee’s shots ‘land’ on the screen to determine their marksmanship.
The firm’s FATS-100MIL product is designed specifically for use by armed forces, and is in service with the US Army and the United States Marine Corps (USMC). The FATS-100MIL product forms the basis of the US Army’s Engagement Skills Trainer-II, and the Indoor Simulated Marksmanship Trainer (SMT) for the USMC, the principle difference between the two products being the replication of the service’s respective doctrine. For example, MTS told MONS that the SMT allows trainees to practice and enhance their marksmanship skills in combined arms scenarios where participants can practice calls for fires for mortar, artillery or close air support. To date, MTS state that they are in the fourth year of respective five year indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contracts for each service.
The company continued that the FATS-100MIL product includes three ‘engines’ which drive the training provided by the system: a basic marksmanship training engine which replicates an indoor or outdoor training range, this is joined by a so-called ‘judgemental’ mode where the trainee can be placed in specific scenarios, such as fighting in a combined space, with the instructor able to manipulate the scenario (placing civilians as well as hostiles in the building, for example) and finally a collective training mode where the trainee can work as part of a fire team or squad.
One of the latest editions to the FATS-100MIL product line is the Live Fire Screen which is constructed from self-healing rubber and enables trainees to fire at the screen using live ammunition. The screen is capable of being used with live rounds of up to 12.7mm.
Dr. Thomas Withington