News: Creating a virtual and constructive environment for NIE 14.1
Story by Sgt. Betty Y. Boomer
FORT BLISS, Texas—Soldiers of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, prepare to use virtual simulations to help create a more realistic battlefield environment for Network Integration Evaluation 14.1 on Fort Bliss, Texas beginning Oct. 25.
NIEs continue to assess the operational utility, maturity and technical readiness, integration and inter-operability with tactical systems from individual Soldiers to Brigade and higher levels.
“We [NIE] have a live brigade combat team in the field, 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division. In addition to that, we are creating a virtual and constructive wrap around, so that the adjacent forces and higher headquarters and subordinate elements that are not live in the field, are being replicated in simulations,” said Michael McCarthy, director of simulation operations and program manager of the Mission Command Complex.
The 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division’s virtual battle is with five brigades out of Fort Riley, Kan. The virtual simulation is equivalent of 20,000 soldiers participating in this evaluation.
“Everyone learns differently, and I would prefer to be in the actual fight than sitting in front of a computer screen,” said Pfc. Taylor Tanner, Infantryman with 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division. “Being an infantryman, I enjoy my job and it is a hands- on job.”
The Army remains committed to the intent of NIEs, which is to eliminate the integration burden on operational formations, develop and integrate mission command capability sets and provide a forum to leverage promising industry capabilities that solve operational gaps.
NIE 14.1 will continue through November, and soldiers will continue to assess the virtual simulations and offer suggestions for improvements that will lead to better performance on the battlefield.