With the continued developments in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) continuing to offer new opportunities for applications, it seems that once again the technology is being used for training Police on how to deal with terrorist situations.
The Automated Serious Game Scenario Generator for Mixed Reality Training (AUGGMED) project has been developed as an online multi-user training platform for joint first responder and counter-terrorism training. This allows users a chance to train and perform exercises within VR, exploring digital reconstructions of real world locations all while interacting with virtual civilians and terrorists. The AR application sees those virtual civilians and terrorists appearing in the real world, offering two different approaches to the same training.
In March of this year, security offers with the Piraeus Port Authority in Greece used AUGGMED to train for potential terrorist-related threats. The AR application allowed the on-site trainees in Piraeus to work alongside other trainees working remotely who were interacting with the same experience through VR. Together, they had to effectively respond to a terrorist attack which meant review the nature of the incident, ensure the safety of civilians and ultimately neutralize the threat. The training is also been used across the world from New Zealand to Singapore, showing that the application for VR training is vital to ensuring police and other first responders are prepared for real-world events.
With AUGGMED aiming to develop a number of ‘serious games’ for VR and AR platforms, which can be used by single users or by many in cooperative training, the platform will enable users to train in countless VR situations. Though there are many benefits to this solution including being a more cost effective way to keep staff training up to date, it is also the most immersive way to train next to the real event taking place.
This is not the first time that VR and AR technology has been used for training police as earlier this year the Pennsylvania Police were awarded a grant to help develop VR training. This was allowed by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency Justice Assistance Grant, offering the department in Scranton a chance to set up a new simulator that will offer 300-degree field of view thanks to borderless screens along with five digital cameras. This will allow police forces a chance to train in a countless number of situations in a near lifelike experience. Even the Idaho State Police are looking to use VR to aid with their recruitment.
AUGGMED has received the backing and support of the European Union and United Nations organisations showing that the future of training is set to be found within virtual space. VRFocus will be sure to bring you all the latest on this topic in the future so keep reading for more.