The U.S. Space Force obviously won’t be able to train most of their service people in actual space, so the relatively new arm of America’s defense forces has tasked Slingshot Aerospace to create a VR space sim, in partnership with The Third Floor, a Hollywood VFX firm that worked on blockbusters including “Gravity,” “The Martian” and “The Mandalorian.” The goal is to generate a simulator that can replicate real-world physics, and provide interactive training capabilities for the Space Force.
In total, the partners have received $2 million toward development of the sim, including a $1 million contract from the Space Force itself and $1 million in funding from ATX Venture Partners. The end result will be called the “Slingshot Orbital Laboratory,” and will be used to provide Space Force members with a better understanding of how objects and spacecraft operate and behave in the unique theater of outer space.
“Space operators need to understand complicated concepts like astrodynamics, the effects of various items in orbit, and how spacecrafts maneuver among other objects in space—all of which demand more adaptive, interactive, and tailorable educational tools than what we are currently using,” said Col. Max Lantz, Commandant, National Security Space Institute, United States Air Force in a press release. “Building an immersive environment to drive better comprehension of these foundational theories will be vital to support the Space Force.”
Slingshot Aerospace, which is a provider of data analytics, tools and computer vision related to both aerospace and terrestrial intelligence, will be handling all the informatics components of the system, while The Third Floor will take care of the immersive visuals. The Laboratory will aim to be a tool that’s simple to use, with the goal of creating a final product that’s accessible to service members with any level of education and technical understanding.
Anyone else getting Ender’s Game – Battle Room vibes from this announcement?