By Amanda Rominiecki, RDECOM CERDEC Public AffairsApril 15, 2013
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md -- Soldiers and civilians alike can now test their knowledge of U.S. and foreign combat vehicles in a new, free Android application released in February.
The mobile app ROC-V, which stands for Recognition of Combatants -- Vehicles, was developed by the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center's Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate, or CERDEC NVESD, located at Fort Belvoir, Va, in collaboration with TRADOC Capability Manager Brigade Combat Team -- Mission Command.
Based on the official ROC-V computer-based training software also developed by CERDEC NVESD, the ROC-V mobile app is a publicly available Android app meant to teach Soldiers to identify combat vehicles using visible cues. The more extensive ROC-V computer based trainer trains the Warfighter to identify vehicles using Forward Looking Infrared and visible imagery. The purpose of the training is fratricide avoidance. CERDEC NVESD's Modeling and Simulation Division has been working closely with the U.S. Army and the U.S. Marine Corps for over 16 years to ensure the training effectiveness of ROC-V.
"As mobile applications really started to take off, we had the idea to create a mobile version of ROC-V," said John O'Connor, NVESD ROC-V project lead. "Taking into consideration comments from both users and TRADOC (U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command), we developed the app available today."
With several study modes, the user can choose to freely study at their own pace or pick between two challenge modes: Vehicle Discrimination and Timed Signature, both meant to test the user's knowledge and expertise on vehicle identification.
"This app means a Soldier can train anytime, anywhere," said O'Connor. "More importantly, it's fun. If a Soldier has a little spare time, he can pull up this app and train in a relaxing but challenging environment."
Users can study the visible markers of the over 80 U.S. and foreign vehicles included in the app. Once the app is downloaded, it requires no internet connection to be played.
While the app is currently only available on Android devices in the Google Play Store, an iOS version is currently under review to be released in the Apple App Store.
So far, user comments about the app have been positive.
"Excellent first version. Highly recommended for anyone wanting to learn basic and detailed vehile (sic) ID. Every military service member with an Android should download this on principle alone. There is now no excuse for not knowing what your loooking (sic) at," said one user in the Google Play store.
"We're very excited about this app," said O'Connor. "It's been 2 years coming, and with great support from TRADOC and the user community, we've developed an excellent product. It's really an evolution of training and support to the Soldier that we hope to continue as we move into the future."