North Carolina-based research institute RTI International has received a $70 million contract from the U.S. Army to produce Abrams tank repair simulations.
RTI's simulations will become a part of the Abrams Maintenance Training System at the U.S. Army Program Executive Office for Simulation, Training, and Instrumentation in Orlando, Florida. More than 8,000 Abrams tanks are currently in the possession of the Army and U.S. Marines.
RTI has previously produced ground vehicle maintenance training simulations for the Army in the early 1990s. Current RTI simulations take the form of Web-based applications that can be implemented using low-cost personal computer stations.
"RTI's approach to this requirement reflects the latest advances in desktop simulations using serious games technology as well as an unprecedented degree of integration with other members of the Abrams community," said RTI training business division vice president Sam Field.
Field continues: "For years, RTI has pioneered the application of virtual reality on low-cost desktops as a means of providing learning-by-doing in a cost-effective and safe environment. These new Abrams products will feature new technologies and everything we know about learning methods."
The project will be developed in cooperation with multiple RTI-affiliated firms, including the Anniston Army Depot in Alabama, DEI Services Corporation and TJ Incorporated of Orlando, and DRS Test and Energy Management of Huntsville, Alabama.