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Awards Registry

Modular Multi-User VR Remote Training Platform
Profile last edited on: 8/26/2021

Program
STTR
Agency
AF
Total Award Amount
$1,149,161
Award Phase
2
Principal Investigator
Chris Lobello
Activity Indicator

Location Information

Resolution Imagery LLC (AKA:MOTH + FLAME)

2012 Pine Grove Avenue
Colorado Springs, CO 80906
   (917) 756-3475
   contact@mothandflamevr.com
   www.mothandflamevr.com
Multiple Locations:   
Congressional District:   05
County:   El Paso

Phase I

Phase I year
2021
Phase I Amount
$149,470
Moth + Flame, in collaboration with the Johns Hopkins University Department of Immersive Storytelling and Emerging Technologies, will study the impact of an artificial intelligence instructor in virtual reality for training. The study will examine learning outcomes in training using traditional materials vs. virtual reality simulations in combination with an AI-powered instructor. This study will apply conversational methods of learning via an AI instructor and measure the impact on study participant’s learning retention immediately after training, 2 weeks after training and 1 month after training. The study will also examine the amount of time it takes students to master skills across the two mediums of learning (traditional, virtually reality with an AI instructor). The study will utilize Kirkpatrick's Four-Level Training Evaluation Model to evaluate the efficacy of the 3 forms of instruction.  The Johns Hopkins University Immersive Storytelling and Emerging Technologies Lab has experience studying the impacts of virtual reality environments and has partnered with other departments across the university including the JHU School of Education and the JHU School of Medicine to produce world-class research. Moth + Flame’s natural language processing technology, machine learning capabilities and virtual reality simulations have already been deployed successfully with Air Force customers. We believe that through this study, we will be able to demonstrate increased retention and faster training time for training via an AI instructor in a virtual reality simulation. With these results, we can establish an effective AI-driven VR training program that can be integrated into Air Force programs such as Agility Prime’s eVTOL platforms.

Phase II

Phase II year
2021 (last award dollars: 2021)
Phase II Amount
$999,691
According to Lt. Col. Robert Knapp, Operations Officer at Air Force Education and Training Command (AETC) Detachment 24 (DET 24), in a traditional pilot training environment, students use paper documents or an iPad with their training documents on it. They then transition from that into an extremely expensive traditional simulator where they can execute the full range of flight maneuvers. The problem with those expensive sims is that there are only a handful of them, and they are constrained on the number of times a student can get into them. Air Education and Training Command’s (AETC) Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) Training Next (RTN) program has a national defense-related mission need to improve the rate and quality of pilot and sensor operator certification for the MQ-9 Reaper. RTN is a competency-based concept where RPA students undergo a tailor-made program based on their capabilities and needs rather than an entire class following a rigid construct and transitioning through the entire pipeline together. Every year, the MQ-9 Formal Training Unit (FTU) is expected to produce 650 Basic Combat Elements (BCE) (a crew consisting of a pilot and sensor operator). However, the FTU currently has the capacity to only graduate 550 BCEs due to instructor and simulator availability shortages. Moth+Flame's READY VR Toolkit accelerates Airmen training by augmenting current solutions with autonomous, scalable technology to help increase pilot production, and has 10 aircraft already contracted for integration onto its platform (Figure 2.3.1.1-1). This means 10 pilot and maintenance communities benefit today from current Air Force investment. By leveraging current AF investment, VR programs get off the ground faster and cheaper than starting from scratch. With tremendous advances in recent years, VR is the perfect solution to augment both basic skills and advanced training and supplement traditional simulators with an integrated, adaptive, immersive, and low-cost solution. Providing data-driven training enhancements to traditional practices, our mission-oriented VR solution brings technology for learning everything from checklist procedures, to formation flying, fighter maneuvers, and multiparticipant tactical scenarios. READY will refine the MQ-9 RTN training and systems roadmap, equipping RTN instructors and students with state-of-the-art VR training that will accelerate the rate of BCE production.