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Visual Threat Recognition and Avoidance Trainer (VTRAT)

VTRAT Article Image
By combining interactive computer scenarios with advanced tutoring methodologies, the VTRAT program provides critically important personnel training for ground-to-air threats.

The VTRAT training system delivers standardized courseware that builds introductory procedural skills for basic tactics, techniques and procedures related to aircraft threat avoidance and survivability.The courseware was developed using standard Instructional Systems Design processes that include cognitive psychologists and subject matter experts, as well as material drawn from existing tactical manuals.

VTRAT courseware leverages modern simulation technology to provide a very focused and simple visual depiction of a combat environment. This includes a highly realistic visual representation of the appearance and behavior of anti-aircraft artillery, surface-to-air missiles, small arms, rocket-propelled grenades and other weapon fire currently encountered in combat. The threat visuals are carefully crafted and maintained for realism based on real-world experiences of subject matter experts and other available military intelligence.

The automated instruction engine used to deliver the VTRAT courseware incorporates both modern speech recognition, which is used to monitor the full range of student interactions, and high-quality text-to-speech for delivery of instruction, reinforcement and remedial content. Instruction is tailored to individual student strengths and weaknesses using intelligent tutoring techniques that are built into the automated instruction. Interfaces with actual equipment used at crew stations maximize transfer of learning to the real-world work environment.

Since its inception more than 10 years ago, the BAE Systems VTRAT program has grown from a single customer covering one airframe and one aircrew observation position to multiple customers at more than 60 sites. The program now covers 16 different types of airframes and more than 80 crew positions. The courseware is tailored to the needs of each customer, airframe and crew position. New airframes and mission protocols are also often added based on changing training needs.