VIRTUAL MISSION PLANNING – TABLE TOP : A VIEWPOINT
VMB also is useful in corporate security, its advantages being improved visualisation; 3D terrain environment of the environment; building interior and x-ray views enhances situational awareness Table top
The world awoke to the exploit of US SEAL Team 6 pulling off a spectacular raid to kill Osama bin Laden and sprint his body away, Pakistan oblivious to happening despite an Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) desk manned to monitor Osama, as has been recently disclosed. Picture of Obama and his staff monitoring the operation live back home was flashed all over; gains of advancement in technology and NCW. Capacity building in NCW is progressing in the Indian military albeit at slow pace.
The Army is developing the Tac C3I System in pursuit of the same capability. What is yet to be looked at and introduced is the Virtual Mission Board (VMB), a deployable multi-touch display table that enhances operations and training by improving mission planning and training through visual representation of the operating environment. Similar to a smart phone or tablet, it provides a multi-touch interface that enables the manipulation of 2D and 3D terrain models including cities and towns. The highly customised table touch-screen display provides situational awareness through full visualisation of the event and enables centralised mission control for military operations as well as security.
Enhanced visualization capabilities of the VMB permits dispensing of paper maps, overlays and elaborate models that often require an entire operations centre with many displays. Unlike these, the VMB allows users to virtually navigate the terrain from several perspectives including fly through and walk through that give the actual feel of the operational/training area before the warfighters go into the operational area.
In addition, the VMB synchronises the display of integrated live, virtual, and constructive environments to augment the operations and training process from planning and rehearsing to execution and evaluation. Capabilities of the VMB include: first, multi-touch interface – providing intuitive navigation of terrain model; second, extensive map imagery – display of up to 15-metre map imagery. Users can apply graphics to the terrain model as well as display location and distance information through single touch; third, multiple navigation modes – includes fly through, walk through and drag. Each navigation mode provides its own perspective (on foot or flight) along with line of sight tool that allows users to see when their line of sight is clear or obstructed; fourth, external interfaces – supports an integrated Testing Environment through COTS products like SE Core, One SAF, VB2 etc, as well as any programme of record (LVCG).
VMB also has a Level 9 Technology Readiness Level; fifth, customisation – enables advanced customisation features such as 3D terrain model of the operational environment or building interior and integration into an Immersive training Environment with video and audio feeds and RFID tracking; and, sixth, self contained and secure—provides a fully self-contained system that is adaptable for secure environments with the capability for external projection.
Simply put, VMB is an innovative solution for operations and training that facilitates planning, rehearsals, execution and assessment, latter both pre and post the mission or training. With the VMB, it is easy to develop and save pultiple mission plans. Conduct of split-screen operations for multiple users and viewing is possible. Monitoring of operations and training can be done effortlessly and significant events can be tagged for after action review. Additionally, incorporation and recording of audio, video, and personnel and vehicle tracking data is possible. Tailor made advantages in planning military operations and training comprises: plan and rehearse with virtual representation of chosen terrain; 3D terrain model and 2D map of the operational environment; user defined graphics tailored to each mission; synchronised display of integrated live, virtual and constructive environments; quality training centre facility at home station; synchronised playback of tracking data, video and audio via timelines with events tagged; and, immediate feedback following execution.
VMB also is useful in corporate security, its advantages being improved visualisation; 3D terrain environment of the environment; building interior and x-ray views enhances situational awareness; and, it is possible to integrate with existing security capabilities like personnel and vehicle location data, video, etc for holistic situational awareness. Considering that here is a solution that allows warfighters to gather around a table, and plan their operations, weapon fire and training, it would be useful for the military to examine the VMB for possible induction into service.