Explore the future of combat training in the piece that outlines the latest Synthetic Training Environment (STE) program updates and recent developments.

The Synthetic Training Environment is the U.S. Army’s initiative to converge virtual, constructive and gaming training environments into a single unified architecture. This ambitious project will enable simulation systems Army-wide to leverage a persistent virtual world for every imaginable training need. As the Army shifts its focus to fighting in a multi-domain environment, this new, STE system will enable collective training across air, ground, sea, cyber and space with greater fidelity that can be used not only as a trainer but also as a mission-planning tool.

STE's Common Synthetic Environment (CSE), designed to allow interoperability between live training simulation systems, is scheduled to reach initial operational capability status in September 2021. The Army plans to deploy the system to more than 400 locations upon the attainment of full operational capability.

So far this summer, the DoD has awarded 5 contracts to accelerate the development and deployment of STE systems. The following is a summary of recently awarded contracts, OTAs and other new developments driving the STE initiative forward.

FAAC is the sole supplier of weapon and Electronic Combat Environment (ECE) simulation software for the family of Navy Tactical Aircrew Combat Training Systems (TACTS) and Air Force Air Combat Training Systems since their inception in the early 1970’s. These training ranges provide pilots with real-time air and ground combat environments, which allow realistic evaluation of the pilots’ combat skills and weapon utilization. The simulations not only provide realistic hit/miss/probability of kill analysis for both threat and friendly weapons, but also provide the participants a factual “reason for miss” evaluation as an added feature to aid their understanding of weapon system capability and employment. The state-of-the-art technology driving the TACTS/ACTS ranges allow for simultaneous simulation of dozens of aircraft, making it the most advanced simulated air warfare application in the industry. Training facilities that utilize TACTS/ACTS are able to develop more comprehensive training programs for their pilots than a facility that focuses only on maneuvering and navigation training, because TACTS/ACTS is specifically focused on weapon utilization.