The Integrated Land Target System (Integrated LTS) Program has briefed around thirty separate industry entities on the Request for Information (RFI).
The Integrated LTS Program is a whole of capability approach to land targetry systems to support challenging, realistic, effective and safe combat training. Via the RFI, it is endeavouring to identify targetry and related systems that: mimic an operational adversary such as a soldier or a tank; mimic other targets such as a materiel target or a mine; enable skills for the individual and team such as speed of action and accuracy; mimic the battlefield physical environment such as peepholes and walls; simulate battlefield effects such as the smells and sounds of battle; and assist the shooter to learn about his/her physiological reactions like heart rate and breathing, in response to battle conditions.
Additionally, it seeks value for money commercial arrangements that are commensurate with the capability being offered including procurement, leasing or full service arrangements.
LTCOL Dan Harrison of Army Headquarters, the program sponsor, emphasised the new approach being taken.
“The days of shooting at yellow and black human shaped silhouettes and plywood tanks are over. Combat places the ultimate demand on the human mind,” LTCOL Harrison said.
“The more that the mind of a combatant can rely upon experience and familiarity, the greater a soldier’s capacity to deal with the unexpected and that experience provides us with preparedness.
“So the broader intent for the Land Combat Training System of which targetry is a part, is the replication of the operational environment in our training areas, ranges and combat effects and the replication of operational actors, and those are our targetry systems.”
“Army now recognises targetry as an important element of the training cycle as it trains soldiers to take decisive and often lethal action at a critical point, specifically that sometimes heartbeat moment when the enemy is contacted or detected,” LTCOL Harrison added.
“Accordingly, because of that recognition of importance by Army, we are now emphasising a whole of capability approach to targetry with the establishment of the Integrated LTS Program at CASG which is a program approach to supporting the delivery and sustainment of targetry systems for training,” Iain Dunn, Director of Simulation at CASG said.
“To date Land targetry has been procured on a relatively ad hoc basis and frequently by projects that are procuring a particular weapon system such as a new rifle or a new platform such as a light armoured vehicle.”
Dunn emphasised that “the Program will be largely responsible for land targetry requirements, contracts and ongoing support and will support projects and other initiatives in delivering and sustaining land targetry.”
The RFI provides a comprehensive functional and non-functional overview of the requirement and examples of the types of services and commercial arrangements that Defence might consider.
“We would like to encourage industry to provide a response to the RFI as the requirement is broad covering many target types and other needs as well as requiring simple targetry items all the way through to complex autonomous robotic targets,” program manager Pat Byrne said.
Byrne also reiterated CASG’s desire for industry to offer innovative commercial options: “CASG is resource constrained so we are looking for genuine partnerships with industry capability to help us deliver against this broad requirement.
“If industry has any questions then please go to AusTender and download the documents and subsequent presentation and current questions and answers, we would love to hear from you.”
“There is plenty of time to respond as we have not sought any specific response format so even if you only have one simple target you feel might offer Defence value for money, please submit a response by close of business Friday 8th March.”
The RFI is available here.