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A new Head Mounted Display (HMD) and Augmented Reality (AR) software app will enable U.S. Army Basic Rifleman Marksmanship training to replace traditional silhouette targets with virtual targets. These enhancements will provide advanced training scenarios while significantly reducing maintenance.

U.S. Army officials green-lit Phase II of the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program for “Augmented / Mixed Reality for Live Fire Ranges.” BANC3 is developing the see-through Augmented Reality prototype to create realistic simulated human avatar overlays in lieu of standard silhouette representations.

This technology can simulate more complex scenarios, including low light conditions, obscurants (smoke), and realistic target behavior during live fire training exercises, according to mil-embedded.com.

BANC3 provides Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) services to the US Department of Defense and various government agencies.

This AR solution addresses major technical challenges including highly accurate head tracking to correctly adjust the simulated target position in the shooter’s field of view, real-time object recognition to compensate for occlusion from the weapon sight and other objects, and helmet mounted display optics and sensors that are small and light enough to avoid any impact to the shooter’s head position and aim.

According to the company website, they envision that the technology commercialization path will include integration with the US Army training ranges, transfer of the technology to the USMC training ranges, and ultimately, transition to civilian law enforcement training ranges.