The Brazilian army received a number of Leopard vehicles for training drivers under the contract for the purchase of basic combat tanks 220 Leopard 1A5BR in Germany
The Brazilian military has begun an ambitious plan to modernize its material base and training opportunities on simulators and combat training as part of an expanded program of transformation of its army.
The implementation of this plan began in the Southern Military District (Comando Militar Do Sul - CMS), and more precisely in the military town of Santa Maria. This is the location of the third division, the main armored formation of Brazil. The division consists of three armored brigades and a motorized infantry brigade, as well as combat support and logistics units. The division has more than 850 armored vehicles registered.
The division's headquarters, most of the personnel and some units of the 6 motorized infantry brigade are stationed in Santa Maria, there is also a training tank center (Centro de Instructao de Blindados, CIB) and a training and assessment center - South (Centro de Adestramento e Avalia-cao - SUL, CdAA). There are two training grounds, a smaller area of 48 km2, and a second area of approximately 800 km2 at a distance of 140 km in the town of Rosario to Sul.
CIB conducts combat training for all officers and all non-commissioned officers for combat operations as part of armored and mechanized units. It includes technical training on all armored tracked and wheeled vehicles in service with the Brazilian army, as well as their tactical application to the level of the battalion.
In order to support its training programs, the Center has a number of simulators. Most were acquired as part of the purchase of the Leopard 220A1BR main battle tanks (MBT) from Germany, the last of which was obtained at the beginning of the 5 of the year.
There are two tower simulators manufactured by Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) for training the tower’s crew. They represent the cuts of the towers, including a fully functional weapons simulator with reusable training ammunition for training the crew loading crew. System faults are initiated by the instructor.
The main armament of the tower simulator is integrated with the Saab BT41 laser simulator, the predecessor of the current BT46 model. Doors in the wall of the tower simulator can open to provide an overview of the surrounding landscape, and simulators mounted on wheels can move forward. BT41 can in this case be used in conjunction with moving around the area machines equipped with laser detectors. In addition to the simulators in the CIB center, each of the four Leopard 1A5BR tank regiments has one turret simulator and a limited set of BT41 laser systems.
CIB has one training simulator for training drivers of a Leopard tank from KMW, which with a high degree of accuracy reproduces the real driver's position with the help of multi-visual and sound systems. Moving platform in this case is not provided. Each regiment and each combined arms unit has one training simulator for driver mechanics. The deputy head of the CIB center, Lieutenant Colonel Mario Eykhov, said that they intend to purchase more such systems.
In the CIB center there are three TTT desktop simulators (table-top trainer) from KMW. They consist of four networked jobs for the driver, commander, gunner operator and instructor. The simulators are notable for mobility, since steel frames that serve as supports also act as shipping containers. Although they are based on the standard KMW Leopard TTT simulator, they were specifically designed for the 1A5BR tank. Each tank regiment and general military units have one simulator, that is, a total of 7 units. There are also two TTTs for the Leopard 1A5BR.
KMW desktop simulator. Almost the same simulator for the tank 1A5BRA installed in the Brazilian armored center. Pictured simulator for tank Leopard 2
As part of the Leopard 1 tank contract for CIB, another simulator with a high degree of reality was also purchased. It is intended for the shooter and the commander; if necessary, an additional external workplace for the driver can be organized, and a place for the instructor is also provided. In the simulator, allowing the commander to pop out of the hatch, uses the virtual space from the company KMW.
Devices with less realism
CIB is in the process of developing its own shooting and combat training simulator, which will use the Virtual Battle Virtual Space from Space (VBS) 3 Bohemia Interactive Simulations (BIS) and Steel Beasts software. This will be a significantly cheaper simulator with a lesser degree of realism.
In addition to individual platform simulators, there is a tactical simulator consisting of 50 workstations located in two rooms, which operate as two separate systems. The training complex includes standard commercial equipment running on VBS 3 and Steel Beasts software. CIB has 46 licenses for VBS and 58 licenses for Steel Beasts licenses, but Eykhov said they are purchasing more licenses.
This simulator is one of the most intensively used systems in the CIB center. It provides tactical courses when 50-60 cadets are trained for six weeks, and also used by individual units for weekly training.
The future general concept of the Brazilian army provides for the organization of four integrated combat training centers CTC (combat training center) in different parts of the country in four specializations: CTC (S) in Santa Maria for the preparation of armored and mechanized forces; CTC near Rio de Janeiro for training light forces; another in Manaus on the Amazon in preparation for jungle action; and the central CTC in the capital of Brasilia for command and staff training. The first three will close the full range of the integrated LVC environment, whereas the center in the capital of Brasilia will provide only the constructive computer component.
It should be noted here that the LVC (Live Virtual Constructive) integrated environment is a combination of real (L - Live, real troops using special sensors, or sensors, for exchanging operational data), virtual (V - Virtual, simulators or simulators) and constructive (C-Constructive, virtual troops, the actions of which are simulated on a computer) simulation tools in a single information space for practicing combat training tasks.
The CTC (S) is a flagship project for the transformation of the Brazilian army, aimed at creating a center of competence for the preparation of armored, motorized infantry and combined arms units. It will also serve as a tool for regional integration, and its material base will be offered to neighboring units for joint and possibly national training.
In developing its concept, the Brazilian army visited combat training centers in a number of countries, including France, Germany and the USA. The head of the training and certification center - South CdAA said that they were particularly struck by the Russian center in Mulino, which is a fully integrated LVC center.
The result of these preliminary studies was the CTC creation plan in Santa Maria, which will provide all three components of the LVC triad. The military town of Santa Maria was chosen for a number of reasons. This is the second largest military center in the country, known as the “capital of armored vehicles”, there is already significant infrastructure along with CIB. The Air Force base is also located here, which will assist in joint training, including the possibility of using unmanned systems in the future.
Santa Maria is the center of the Southern Military District and is therefore well suited for combat training. There are several universities here, including the Federal University of Santa Maria, which already participates in military research programs, including the newly created Technopark; they will supply a large number of graduates. Several local and foreign companies are also located there, including KMW and AEL (Elbit Brazil), involved in modeling and simulators.
In this plan, the virtual component of the LVC triad will be a building with training systems, in which several network immersive (providing the full presence effect) places will be located for training in actions on combat vehicles and in dismounted orders; the first are capable of simulating various combat vehicles, and the second are various anti-aircraft weapons. A tactical training class will also be organized with a large number of computerized jobs.
The CTC exercise control center will be located in a separate building and will be responsible for supervising all activities, including combat training in Rosario do Sul. He will also have advanced tools for analyzing the activities carried out.
The first stage of CTC development is already close to completion. Within its framework, a fire support simulator (Simulador de Apoio de Fogo - SAF) is being created. It is based on a similar complex already operating at the Agulhas Negras military academy near Rio de Janeiro. There will be fire training on M109 self-propelled howitzers, 155-mm and 105-mm towed guns, 120-mm mortars, and anti-aircraft weapons. However, although during the planning of the fire mission training will be carried out to attract air support, there will be no conditions for the training of advanced aviation gunners or artillery observation officers to manage air support.
Management of the lower echelons of the 3 division of the Brazilian army “Blue Liberty”. Right-hand computers are operational management systems, left is COMBATER, providing artificial intelligence for these exercises.
Fire support training
The SAF fire support simulator will allow training of all artillery units based in the southern part of the region, while the remaining units will receive training in Agulhas Negras.
The building has four separate sites for training in fire control and the organization of observation posts, a large audience and several booths for individual training. The fire support modeling system was supplied by the Spanish company Tecnobit; it is already in use in Agulhas Negras, and will soon be installed in a center in Santa Maria. It is based on the Simulador de Artilleria de Campana training complex (SIMACA), which is used by the Spanish army, but modernized and adapted for Brazil.
There is also a “fire line” for training with real equipment. This is a large hall where artillery systems can be deployed with built-in sensors, such as 105-mm towed guns or 120-mm mortars. Part of the building can be opened in order to get an overview of the surrounding landscape. Heavier weapons systems can be installed on the external concreted site.
The structural component (C) of the LVC triad will be based on the application of the COMBATER system, which will be installed in a new, dedicated building. COMBATER is a command-training system developed by the French company MASA and based on the Sword product, which is currently used in 15 countries. Sword can be finely tuned and integrated with the existing user management system; in conjunction with the correct doctrine, it widely uses artificial intelligence to create an operational environment.
COMBATER was required to be a constructive modeling system designed for command and staff exercises at battalion, brigade and division level, with symmetrical / asymmetrical combat, as well as public safety scenarios. In 2013, MASA received a contract worth 7 million dollars for 18 months to customize software to customer requirements and five years of technical support and maintenance.
The first large-scale exercises were held in less than six months, and the full adaptation and adjustment of the doctrine and requirements of the Brazilian army took 13 months.
In August 2015, the third division conducted Blue Liberty exercises in Santa Maria using the COMBATER system. They became the main event aimed at training the headquarters of the division, its brigades, combat support and logistic support units. An employee of the CdAA Training and Certification Center, who is responsible for constructive training, noted the significant contribution that the COMBATER system made to combat training, in particular, in reducing the human resources needed to conduct large exercises.
With the exception of the lowest levels of field training (component L) associated with the CTC, the rest of the training will take place at the training ground in Rosario do Sul. The goal here is to obtain, ultimately, a fully equipped base for the simulation of combat operations, at least at the battalion level. The advantages of a large training range outweigh the distance to Santa Maria, and the communication channels with high bandwidth level out many possible difficulties. Mobile means of processing reports and local control will be provided, while overall control will remain with the Santa Maria training center.
The task is to develop the CTC (S) center in three five-year stages, to obtain certain operational capabilities in all areas by the end of each stage, and also to increase the center's capabilities as the project improves.
The full cost of the entire project has not been disclosed, but, being an important part of the transformation plan of the Brazilian army, its funding will be provided and included in the long-term budgets.
The Brazilian army has a clear idea of what kind of combat training infrastructure it wants, how to use simulation and how to achieve it.
The enthusiasm and approval of the senior officers was quite definite, especially regarding the COMBATER system, which allowed them to conduct significantly more complex command and staff exercises at the troop level and would undoubtedly be of great help in ensuring the planning of the 2016 Olympic Games of the year.
In the field of sales of field training and virtual immersion systems, there are significant opportunities and it is obvious that in Europe and the United States, the main players in the combat simulation market are exploring all the available options.