The US Army is set to break ground on a new Digital Air-Ground Integration Range (DAGIR) at Fort Knox in Kentucky to boost training capabilities.
Construction of the proposed high tech live-fire range will start between September and October this year and is expected to be completed in 2023.
The fully computerised training facility will be used by military personnel to ‘coordinate and practice accomplishing missions from the ground and air’ at the same time.
The new DAGIR system will be established at the Yano Range in an area of around 3,000 square acres. To allow construction work to begin, training missions at Yano Range have been moved to Wilcox Range.
It is estimated that the project will cost nearly $52m, comprising $26m for construction and the remaining amount for instrumentation.
It will be the second such range after the US Army established the first DAGIR focused on air-ground integration at Fort Bliss in Texas in 2012.
Fort Knox directorate of plans, training, mobilization and security installation range management officer Rodney Manson said: “This is a big project, probably the biggest in army ranges for the next four or five years.
“The range will include target devices, battlefield effects simulators, aerial weapons scoring system; all the stuff that goes into a DAGIR.”
The DAGIR range is a significant improvement compared to the current facility at Yano Range, which allows training using only one or two tanks at a time.
The facility will be able to accommodate individual and platoon tank gunneries, dismounted live-fire exercises, artillery fires, and several capabilities for rotary and fixed-wing aircraft. It can serve as a venue to conduct aircrew qualifications.