Firefight simulator trains face-to-face with real rounds

Marine Corps Times reporter Matthew Schehl, a former Army staff sergeant, uses a General Dynamics trainer against a role-player at Modern Day Marine. (Daniel Woolfolk/Marine Corps Times)

MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va. — Every Marine may be a rifleman, but it is a daunting training task to prepare individuals to directly engage other humans with live ammunition in real life, real time.

To bridge the gap between virtual and live-fire training, General Dynamics developed its Advanced Live Combat Training System, a live-fire platform that which will bring fully armed Marines face-to-face with live role players in complex and dynamic training scenarios.

Using Utilizing large panel mirrors made of Mylar — the same reflective plastic used in helium Happy Birthday! balloons — shooters engage 98 percent accurate reflections of the role players, who in reality are safely positioned out of the line of fire.

"Our approach is for the Marine to be able to walk on [the training site] with the kit they're going to go fight in, nothing else," Jeffery Moss, senior manager of marketing and business development at General Dynamics Information Technology, told Marine Corps Times during a demonstration at the Modern Day Marine exposition here on Wednesday.

"It's 'train as you fight,' so no blank adapters, no fake weapons; it's real stuff, real ammo."

Despite thousands of hours spent on firearms training, military and law enforcement personnel have a natural tendency to hesitate when it comes to discharging weapons at other human beings, according to Moss said.

By focusing on this decisive moment With a focus of honing in on this moment, General Dynamics' new training system the ALCTS is designed to challenge individuals and teams to make sound tactical decisions in complex and stressful environments.

Possible scenarios include negotiating vehicle checkpoints, multi-building room clearings clearance, close-quarters combat, hostage rescue and as well as sniper training.

"Here, it's human on human, and it's live-fire," Moss said.

When a weapon is discharged, the bullet perforates the Mylar panel to embed in a backstop. Sensors in the panels are able to register target positioning and wirelessly notify role players of a mortal hit, enabling them to react appropriately.

All information is recorded to enable thorough after-action review.