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The US Department of Defense is collaborating with Google in the advancement of an artificial intelligence-driven virtual training system for remote pilot exercises.  

The Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) and Google Cloud have entered into an agreement with the Air Force to modernize pilot training.

Through the Joint Immersive Training System (JTS), the 19th Air Force, Air Education and Training Command, will use off-the-shelf equipment such as virtual reality headsets, joysticks, rubber pedal controls and video gaming chairs to build training devices that can be deployed to service members worldwide.

As part of the year-long contract, DIU will deploy about 50 devices at the bases to train students on the T-6 and T-38 aircraft.

The system aims to overcome three main limitations with current training: First, 

it isn’t scalable beyond current production levels without massive infusion of additional resources. 

Second, a lack of training assets limits students’ ability to practice and learn through repetition and personal discovery. 

Third, it lacks sufficient use of data to produce meaningful insights into student and instructor performance.

Also, current training assumes all students need the same access to the same lessons presented in the same order, but the Defense Department needs to train more pilots than the current model allows.

According to gcn.com, the JTS platform will empower DoD flight instructors to use modern adult learning methods while managing risk and ensuring wide access to simulation technology. 

Another benefit is the ability to collect data on students’ and instructors’ performance, which can allow for self-paced training and individualized instruction. 

Not having to use purpose-built equipment at specified locations is crucial to expanding training accessibility. By putting its learning management system in the Google Cloud, students and instructors can access it anytime from anywhere. Google Cloud is also using its Apigee application programming interface platform to create connection points back to the data repositories the Air Force needs for training.