The UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) has awarded a contract to a XPI Simulation-led team to improve simulated technology.

Awarded under the synthetic environments (SE) tower of excellence project, the £3.6m contract requires the team, which includes QinetiQ, Cranfield University and Thales UK, to investigate future cost-effective methods and technologies to improve force and environmental representation in simulations and synthetic environments.

The XPI-led team will focus on force and environmental representations in support of training, concept development and experimentation, as well as acquisition, evaluation and mission preparation.

Dstl senior capability adviser Bharat Patel said: "The proposed integrated approach to developing these key components, with improved behaviour and wider EM representation, will provide future simulation capability with greater agility and affordability to train our people, evaluate our systems, and make informed decisions in a growing uncertain and ever more complex operational environment."

The team will carry out research and development towards a next-generation of integrated representation of all types of forces, adversaries and operating environments during the course of four-year simulation composition and the representation of natural and physical environments (SCORE) project.

"The XPI-led team will focus on force and environmental representations in support of training, concept development and experimentation."

Specific areas to be addressed include representations of the outside world environment such as terrain, features, weather and electromagnetic waves, as well as force behaviour, including systems, equipment, people and autonomy.

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The agreement will enable greater integration between the joint, land, sea and air simulated forces and environments, and between Nato nations and other coalition partners, leading to cost-effective national and multi-national defence exercises and experimentation.

The contract represents the third award in SE Tower, complementing the work led by SEA on looking at live, virtual constructive simulation architectures, interoperability and management of systems, and the QinetiQ-led work exploiting emerging technologies for defence training and simulation.

Initiated in 2004, SE Tower brings together the MoD, industry and academia to develop UK defence capability relevant to the use of simulation and SEs.

Image: A XPI Simulation-led team has been contract by Dstl to improve simulated technology for use by the UK Armed Forces. Photo: Crown copyright.

Defence Technology