FORT LEAVENWORTH, Kan. -- Army leaders asked industry and academic partners to help the force revolutionize training for units ranging from squads to theater armies.
Some 175 defense industry representatives and academic experts attended the Synthetic Training Environment Industry Day from Sept. 18-19 at the Frontier Conference Center. The event was held by the Combined Arms Center -- Training (CAC-T), which supports training across the Army.
The Synthetic Training Environment (STE) will be a single, interconnected training system to prepare units in the most appropriate training domain -- live, virtual, constructive, and gaming -- or train in all four domains simultaneously.
Lt. Gen. Michael D. Lundy, commanding general of the Combined Arms Center, welcomed the attendees and explained the importance of the STE in preparing units for missions ranging from counterinsurgencies to large-scale conflicts.
"Getting our Soldiers ready to deal with the full range of military operations is one of the big reasons for the STE," he said. "It's about building readiness from squads to theater armies."
Lundy said commanders' most precious resource is time. They do not have the time to rely solely on live training. The STE's use of virtual, constructive and gaming training capabilities will give commanders the time for exercise repetitions.
The STE will improve the Army's current training capabilities to provide training at home stations, the Combat Training Centers and deployed locations. "We need to deliver training to where the Soldiers are," he said.
Maj. Gen. Maria R. Gervais, deputy commanding general Combined Arms Center - Training, said the STE is more than a tweak in Army training.
"The STE will revolutionize training to build readiness," she said.
Gervais acknowledged that the STE effort has a number of technological challenges. The STE must be able to capture the entire world's terrain, allowing commanders to prepare their units for missions anywhere.
The Army also will need to replace its vehicle and helicopter collective trainers with ones that are easy to configure, provide realistic training and are inexpensive to operate, she said.
Gervais said CAC-T will work with other Army organizations to streamline the requirements process and get new training capabilities to Soldiers faster.
She said a Fort Leavenworth organization showed how that could be done. The Combined Arms Center- Training Innovation Facility sped up the requirements process for the Stryker Virtual Collective Training by getting feedback from Stryker unit Soldiers.
Though the Army needs assistance in a number of other areas to create the STE, Gervais expressed confidence in the Army's industry and academic partners.
"I know we can make the STE a reality," she said the industry day audience. "I know that because I know we have all the right people in this room."
CAC-T fields training systems, delivers leader training and sustains training capabilities to support Army institutional and operational training of Soldiers, leaders, and units to successfully execute Unified Land Operations in complex, ambiguous environments.
CAC-T's website is http://usacac.army.mil/organizations/cact/. You can follow CAC-T on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/usacactraining and Twitter at: @usacactraining.