War Games: How Virtual Computing Is Advancing Troop Training

by Matt Tovey

War games are now virtual. With combat readiness at stake, they’re anything but a game.

Driver Trainer on Platform.
Driver trainer on platform.

Battle-ready troops are needed as the military adjusts to meet the ever-changing demands of a combat zone.

Thanks to advances in GPU-powered virtualization with NVIDIA GRID, everything from equipment instruction to training for battlefield combat can be delivered to soldiers in any location via the cloud, far from the confines of boot camp.

Old-school training programs can be so limited in their purpose they’re described as “stove piped.” The shift to the virtual battlefield isn’t new, but virtualizing an intense combat situation and delivering it in a classroom is as good as having boots on the ground.

Any enterprise architecture system used for military training must allow for resources to be shared at low cost while boosting operational efficiency by using off-the-shelf equipment. As always with military spending, the bottom line counts.

The U.K.’s Ministry of Defence developed a system known as Training and Education Architecture (Land), or T&EA(L), that gives commanders the opportunity to train troops in a variety of simulated scenarios that mimic battlefield events in a realistic manner, much as video games do.

In terms of military instruction, training applications could be delivered through a data center via the cloud to multiple devices — including PCs, Macs, tablets and other mobile devices — in any location.

This resembles cloud-hosted gaming on platforms such as NVIDIA GeForce NOW, which streams a library of popular PC games at high resolution and fast speeds.

Maintainer Training Aid.
Maintainer training aid.

Military training programs can mimic the gaming world by adding fresh content and new applications in real time. Training can then be delivered outside a traditional classroom and curated for troops needing instruction for specialized roles.

Hear more about what we’re doing at the I/ITSEC conference in Orlando, Fla., where I’ll be presenting at a visual computing session on Dec. 3, moderated by NVIDIA Principal Engineer Doug Traill.