Three Keys to Accelerated Readiness in the Pacific

How Digital Twins, Wearables and VR Training Can Help the Joint Forces Keep Pace

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Speed has become the most critical factor for the joint forces in the Pacific. Traditional time frames to sense, decide and act—and even to train—no longer apply. In a conflict, the advantage will go not just to the strongest, but the fastest. 

Three emerging technologies being developed by Booz Allen are now helping to give the joint forces the speed they need for advanced readiness in the Pacific. Digital twins are making it possible for commanders to evaluate multiple possible courses of action in real time, to make decisions quicker. Biometric wearables are helping warfighters—on the ground, in the air and on ships—to stay at peak performance. Augmented and virtual and augmented reality (AR/VR) are allowing warfighters to quickly train—in place—for fast-changing threats and conditions.

Each of these technologies is informed by artificial intelligence—and in some cases generative AI—to provide the kinds of exponential leaps in data analysis now needed to keep pace with today’s adversaries. And, the technologies are expressly designed to leverage the joint forces’ current capabilities, making all three feasible and cost-effective for quick adoption. 

Digital Twins for Readiness Speed in the Pacific 

A digital twin is a virtual representation of an object, system or process that is directly connected, or twinned, to its physical counterpart through continuously updated data feeds. Digital twins enable real-time monitoring, analysis, and simulation, and can be used in a variety of applications, including real-time operational planning. 

For example, an AI-aided digital twin of a particular area of the Pacific—which might include islands, archipelagos and strategic waterways—could allow military planners to wargame various courses of action before committing troops and resources. Because multiple users can have secure access to digital twins, U.S. forces and their allies and partners can work closely together in realistic virtual environments.

Digital twins can also create comprehensive and dynamic representations of military assets — such as vehicles, aircraft, and weapon systems—to improve decision-making, resource allocation, and overall operational efficiency. 

Biometric Wearables for Readiness Speed in the Pacific

Wearables generate information on heart rate, respiration, sleep patterns, stress levels, posture, reaction time, and other metrics, providing critical insight into a warfighter’s physical and mental readiness. While a warfighter might seem in top physical shape, a closer look at cognitive data might show that he or she is experiencing anxiety or fatigue. For example, subtle changes in heart rates and stress levels might show that a Navy aviator who is patrolling a high-tension area in the South China Sea is sleep-deprived and has lower than normal reaction times. 

Aided by AI, biometric insights offer valuable data that can help decision-makers optimize individual and unit readiness from training to tip-of-the-spear operations. For example, by monitoring cognitive workload through brainwave activity or other biometrics, commanders can assess team fatigue, and ensure that warfighters are not overloaded in critical situations.

AR/VR Training for Readiness Speed in the Pacific

With threats and conditions in the Pacific changing so rapidly, warfighters often need to constantly train for new missions, new scenarios, and new tactics, techniques and procedures (TTP). AR/VR allows warfighters who are spread across the Pacific on ships and far-flung islands to train in place, so that they are ready now, not later. 

AR/VR training can take place almost anywhere. For example, sailors can stay on their submarines as they update their training on unmanned undersea vehicles. And soldiers on bases can train in portable units—such as shipping containers—that can quickly be configured for any number of specific battlefield environments and scenarios.  

VR immerses users in a computer-generated environment, and AR overlays digital content onto the real world, enhancing the user's perception without fully replacing it. With mixed reality, warfighters can wear VR headsets and manipulate physical props such as weapons.

Generative AI can play a key role, for example by dynamically changing training scenarios as warfighters move through them, creating new and unexpected challenges. AI is also valuable in analyzing warfighters’ actions—for example, where they are looking at any given moment—to improve their skills. 

Accelerated Readiness that is Both Feasible and Cost-Effective

Rapid advances in the technologies behind digital twins, wearable biometrics, and AR/VR training are making them increasingly cost-effective for defense organizations. All three capabilities provide significant cost savings while greatly accelerating the speed of readiness, training and decision-making in the Pacific and elsewhere. 

About Booz Allen

Booz Allen has been providing readiness solutions to the U.S. military since 1940, when it assessed the nation’s preparedness for a major war. Booz Allen continues to pioneer a broad range of approaches that provide defense organizations with both the insight and the speed needed to stay ahead of today’s adversaries. 

Learn how Booz Allen accelerates readiness in the Pacific. Read the full report

This content is made possible by our sponsor Booz Allen; it is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Defense One's editorial staff. 

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