May 11, 2011 defpro.com
ORLANDO, Florida | Cubic Corporation is introducing a new system for the U.S. Army – a mobile version of its virtual small arms trainer that can be deployed to installations in the U.S. via tractor-trailer, or shipped by sea to any overseas location.
Called the Mobile Engagement Skills Trainer 2000 (M-EST 2000), the program is funded by the U.S. Army Program Executive Office for Simulation, Training & Instrumentation (PEO-STRI). M-EST 2000 supports the Army’s goal of optimizing homestation training and is designed to reduce costs and bring training to the troops.
M-EST 2000 consists of a 40-foot-long unit mounted on a 53-foot-long trailer. Both sides of the unit fold down hydraulically when in use, creating a training area that is environmentally controlled and self-powered. Inside is a standard five-lane EST 2000, the U.S. Army’s program of record system for virtual small arms training, and the only marksmanship trainer with weapons ballistics validated by the Army.
Manufactured by Cubic’s Simulation Systems Division in Orlando, Florida, EST 2000 is a laser-based system that uses digital video projectors, high-definition screens, game-based computer graphics and ballistically accurate simulated weapons to create highly realistic virtual combat scenarios. It replicates the performance of individual small arms and crew-served weapons. Its geo-specific virtual scenarios can be varied from urban to jungle and mountain terrains to Middle Eastern desert environments.
The system is widely used for teaching and maintaining marksmanship skills, judgmental use of force techniques, and collective training of soldiers and police. Cubic has delivered more than 1,000 EST 2000 systems and 18,000 simulated weapons to U.S. and allied military installations around the world.
However, many installations, particularly Army National Guard armories, have limited access to such virtual training. The new mobile system allows the EST 2000 training experience to go on the road. “Sometimes soldiers have to travel long distances to get to an EST,” said Mark Saturno, Director of Business Development for Cubic Simulation Systems. “We are taking the training to the troops, rather than the troops to the training.”
Over the next 10 months, M-EST 2000 is scheduled to be displayed and evaluated at the U.S. Army War College in Pennsylvania, at Fort Knox in Kentucky, at the Mississippi National Guard armory in Springfield, at Camp Dodge in Iowa and other locations around the country.