VR Simulation company secures grant to develop offshore wind industry trainingAugust 30, 2022
VRAI and BAE Systems new partnership set to facilitate next generation military training through Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence in synthetic air, land, sea, space and cyber forces environment.
UNITED KINGDOM – Gateshead-based VR simulation company VRAI has, today, announced a major partnership with BAE Systems to harness the power of virtual reality (VR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to accelerate next generation training for military forces of tomorrow. BAE Systems announced the partnership at the Farnborough International Airshow, which is taking place from 18-22 July. The two companies revealed ambitious plans to further develop a single synthetic environment (a metaverse) to enable air, land, sea, space and cyber forces to plug in and train alongside one another in a single virtual world.
VRAI have developed cutting edge technology that enables them to provide performance insights using machine learning and huge datasets generated by synthetic training, to assist people working in hazardous environments, including military forces.
The initial proof of concept to be delivered by BAE Systems by the end of 2022, will see the company integrate multi-domain synthetic environments to enable complex collective training scenarios in a secure environment.
Militaries around the western world are increasingly focused on using new technologies to remove their personnel from risk and reduce the carbon footprint of military training. Simulation and virtual training provides the opportunity for people to train in a wide variety of scenarios and hazardous environments, without exposing them to the risk of those scenarios, reduce the level of wear and tear of equipment, and reducing carbon footprint. The partnership between VRAI and BAE will enable the creation of a “training metaverse”, and VRAIs technology will enable the large simulation datasets to be captured, storered, analysed and presented back to the users in an actionable way.
Founded in Ireland in 2017, VRAI’s cutting-edge technology combines virtual reality technology with data capture, analysis and machine learning (ML) in order to measure, evaluate and predict human performance, and improve training outcomes. VRAIs vision is to democratise simulation training by bringing high end simulation capability, once the sole domain of elite roles such as pilots or surgeons, to whoever needs it. They are also currently building a VR simulation solution for the offshore wind industry.
According to Allied Market Research, the global virtual training and simulation market size was valued at $204.41 billion in 2019, and is projected to reach $601.85 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 13.7% from 2020 to 2027. Increased demand for such solutions from enterprise and government agencies is driving the market worldwide. In 2021, world military spending overall surpassed USD 2 trillion (£1.67 trillion) for the first time. The UK’s defence spending in 2020/21 amounted to more than £42 billion, and is expected to exceed £48 billion by 2025.
Sir Stuart Atha, Defence Capability Director for BAE Systems’ Air sector, said: “A single synthetic environment opens up huge opportunities for collective training, bringing crucial battlefield experiences without the challenges and constraints of live training and its limited warfare scenarios. Being able to use the data generated from simulation to tailor training for an individual is crucial for our armed forces. VRAI is a world leader in this area, so we are really excited to be working with the team. The modern battlespace is constantly changing and by collaborating with cutting-edge companies like VRAI we can meet this challenge and help our armed forces stay ahead of the curve.”
Speaking about the partnership with BAE Systems, Niall Campion, VRAI Co-Founder and Managing Director for Product & Customers, said: “We believe that data, particularly data captured via virtual training, has the power to revolutionise how militaries prepare for operations. By capturing, storing and evaluating individual user performance data within simulation we can deliver actionable insights to instructors actionable insights, personalised to each trainee. Our work with BAE Systems will enable us to bring these insights right to the front line of training.”
We are democratising simulation training by bringing high end simulation capability, once the sole domain of elite roles such as pilots, surgeons and F1 drivers, to whoever needs it, whenever they need it, wherever they need it
Our insight is that VR, as well as being a great way of presenting data to a user, is also an incredibly powerful data capture medium.
We combine virtual reality technology with data capture, analysis and machine learning (ML) in order to measure, evaluate and predict human performance and improve training outcomes.
VR simulation has the added benefit of reducing the cost and carbon footprint of traditional training.
We are focussed on helping customers in aerospace, defence and offshore wind, working through both MoDs and OEM/Primes.
We believe in creating shared value for our customers, investors, employees and community by adopting the ‘Triple Bottom Line’ and the B Corporation constitution. This means our company has a legal obligation to focus not only on profit, but also on people and the planet.
VRAI has offices in Gateshead, NE England and Dublin, Ireland. The company employs over 12 people.
About BAE Systems
At BAE Systems, our people provide decades of experience working with our customers across the globe to deliver and evolve training to meet their current and operational requirements.
Today we work throughout the training pipeline from the classroom, synthetic and live environments to deliver next generation effects-led training; producing the right skills to meet current and future operational requirements.
From the outset our approach is a partnership; we work to develop an intimate understanding of our customers’ requirements and collaborate with our partners and suppliers to provide the best training services to meet their needs.
Earlier this year, BAE Systems signed a MoU with distributed computing specialists Hadean to explore ways to use its technology to power its single synthetic environment proof of concept.