Fort McCoy News January 10, 2014

Consolidation of simulation facilities proceeds on time

STORY & PHOTO BY ROB SCHUETTE
Public Affairs Staff

Consolidation of Fort McCoy's simulation facilities in the 200 block is progressing as the first step of a comprehensive construction schedule is near completion, said Rob Weisbrod, Training Support Officer for the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security (DPTMS).

Photo for simulation article
Members of a Regional Training Site-Maintenance Armorer course train in weapons firing at the Engagement Skills Trainer (collective), building 1762. The equipment will move to the 200 block as part of a modernization/consolidation construction project.

Currently, building 220, which houses the Engagement Skills Trainer (EST) and the Call for Fire Trainer, and, building 221, the Reconfigurable Vehicle Tactical Trainer (RVTT), already are located in the area, Weisbrod said.

Four new facilities, including the Call for Fire Trainer, the EST (individual), the EST (collective) and the Reconfigurable Tactical Operations Center (RTOC) are scheduled to be completed in the January/February time frame. Renovation of building 220 is tentatively scheduled to be done in fiscal year (FY 15) to prepare it as the site for the Mission Command Training Center (MCTC) hub. The MCTC hub will be used to conduct battalion and higher-level staff exercises and to establish a Live-Virtual-Constructive (LVC) Integrated Training Environment (ITE), which technically connects or combines LVC and Mission Command Training systems, using a network-integrating device, into one common exercise.

The new facilities will provide a modern environment to support simulation training and upgraded computer, lighting, and heating/cooling equipment, etc.

Simulation training allows Fort McCoy training customers to conduct individual or collective training in almost any contingency scenario they would encounter from individual weapons fire to drivers training, communications training, land navigation, convoy operations, and dismounted operations, he said.

"One of the benefits of having all of the simulation facilities in one general location is that it cuts down travel time," Weisbrod said.

"It also will make it easier for units or groups to conduct round-robin training in one general location."

Planning and/or construction for buildings to house the other simulation facilities is underway.

Weisbrod said these facilities are scheduled to be completed during FY 2015 and include: the Gaming Facility, the Virtual Battle Space Simulator, the Dismounted Soldier Training System, the HMMWV (High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle) Egress Assistance Trainer or HEAT and the Tactical Analysis Feedback Facility (TAFF). These simulators currently are housed in existing facilities throughout the cantonment area. The TAFF is a new capability.

The project also includes trailer pads to house simulation training conducted from specially designed mobile trailers.

Weisbrod said the Virtual Clearance Training Suite trailers will relocate from the Wisconsin Military Academy to the 200 block.

"These projects will allow us to expand our training capabilities," he said. "We now will have additional infrastructure for units to conduct mission command training and the ability to achieve the LVC ITE.

"The parking lot also will be expanded to provide adequate support for the units or organizations using the simulation training facilities."

After all the projects are completed, building 220 will serve as the MCTC hub, and be a coordination point for mission command training and to establish the LVC ITE.

"This will allow the MCTC to serve as the linking site for all of our simulation capabilities to be integrated into a (large-scale) exercise scenario," Weisbrod said.

The Medical Simulation Training Center will remain in the 1000 block near the Regional Training Site-Medical Fort McCoy facilities, Weisbrod said.

Authorized personnel can use the installation's simulation facilities as part of their training at Fort McCoy. For more information about simulation training opportunities at Fort McCoy, call 608-388-2752.