TESS is used to safely train personnel in the tactical operations of the AH-64D/E Attack Helicopter. Live fire training includes cooperative force engagements, evasive procedures, and the use of Aircraft Survivability Equipment (ASE). Player and Event data is transmitted in real-time for display and tracking on the Modular Mobile Command and Control (MMCC) to provide situational awareness, player-to-player communications, decentralized engagement adjudication, Real-Time Casualty Assessment (RTCA), and After Action Review (AAR).
The A-kit includes the Training Laser Designator (TLD), the tray assembly for the Advanced Smart Onboard Data Interface Module (ASMODIM) and modified software in the weapons display and systems processors with cable connection provisions. The B-kit includes the ASMODIM, TESS Gun Control Unit (TGCU), TESS Training Missile (TTM), and GPS and Telemetry antennas.
The Advanced Smart Onboard Data Interface Module (ASMODIM) interfaces with air and ground vehicles to provide live fire and simulated weapons training and is fully compatible with MILES and laser-based direct fire weapons. It computes Geometric Pairing solutions and processes Simulated Area Weapon Effects (SAWE) data for all weapons. Aircraft and targeted vehicles are Geometrically Paired by their GPS positions for RTCA. The ASMODIM selects a target from its player position database in the appropriate weapons impact footprint, and computes Probability of Hit (Ph) algorithms specific to each weapon type and player type. It then informs the target via the data link that it is selected for assessment and passes RTCA feedback directly to the aircraft weapons processor and ground station through the onboard telemetry radio.
TESS enables pilots to safely perform force-on-force training without firing a round. Weapon systems acquire and engage TESS instrumented targets. TESS uses MILES Laser and Geometric Pairing to adjudicate all weapon engagements. SAL Missile and 30mm Gun engagements are simulated with MILES eye-safe lasers. RF Missile and Rocket engagements are simulated with Geometric Pairing. Pilots receive visual and audio cues in real-time.
The Training Laser Designator (TLD) is permanently embedded within the Phase III Modernized Day Sensor Assembly (M-DSA) for the AH-64D/E M-TADS/PNVS. The TLD simulates the designation performed by tactical hardware. The TLD is a self-contained subsystem consisting of a collimated Class 3R (ANSI) 904 nanometer (nm) eye-safe Laser energy transmitter capable of transmitting MILES coded messages to simulate designation during training exercises. It includes the optics required to direct the laser beams and the associated electronics to drive the TLD. MILES output is enabled when firing simulated Hellfire Missiles or Rockets when Aviation TESS is installed and engaged on the aircraft. Parameters for direct fire routine are in accordance with PMT 90-S002A. MILES Player IDs range up to 1320 unique Players and 4 Ammo codes.
The TESS Gun Control Unit (TGCU) is mounted within the 30mm Gun Turret and receives commands from the aircraft to control the TGCU and TLD. A new Boresight Tool Kit was developed to align the TGCU Laser with the aircraft target crosshair reticle in the TADS display.
The TESS Training Missile (TTM) mounts onto a pylon launcher and interfaces with the aircraft weapons processor to enable training mode and weapons emulation. The TTM replaces and emulates the Hellfire missile in size, shape and weight. A Flash Weapon Effects Signature Simulator (FlashWESS) provides visual signals of weapon firing events, and the Aircraft Kill Indicator (AKI) provides visual indication of RTCA status of the aircraft platform.
Aviation (AV) TESS instruments the UH-60 Blackhawk and CH-47 Chinook helicopters for collective training at U.S. Army Combat Training Centers (CTCs) and Home Stations. MILES Laser engagement capability is added by integrating the SMODIM, Aircraft Kill Indicator (AKI), and GPS and Telemetry antennas. The AKI is a hermetically sealed, high-intensity strobe light that transmits standard “Hit”, “Kill” or “Near Miss” flash sequence indications when the Laser Sensors detect MILES Laser energy.
AV TESS is designed to interface with the CTC’s Core Instrumentation System (CIS) through the existing Army Aviation Data Management System (AADMS) network. The SMODIM processes signals received from the Laser Sensors/Detectors to calculate Real-Time Casualty Assessment (RTCA). Based on the outcome, the SMODIM controls AKI signaling, injects audio messages through the aircraft Intercom System (ICS), and transmits event data through the telemetry network.
The Aviation MILES Detector Plate (AMDP) provides detection of 904nm MILES Laser engagements. Four assemblies per platform are installed to detect, identify and characterize MILES engagements. The MILES Sensors have a viewing window of 120°, 60° off the center line spherically. They are designed with a Built-In Test (BIT) capability and report BIT status to the SMODIM. AMDPs are installed and connected to the aircraft Laser Warning System when the aircraft does not have the AN/AVR-2 Laser Warning System installed. The Plate is installed in the same location as the AN/AVR-2.
LUH-TESS provides dual capabilities for the UH-72A Lakota Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) to perform as an Observer/Controller (O/C) and Opposing Force (OPFOR). An Offensive Weapons Capability is added to provide target acquisition and simulated weapons for the OPFOR threat aircraft. Weapons are simulated with a MILES coded Laser. New platform integrated components include the Articulating Sensor Package (ASP) with embedded FlashWESS Laser Transmitter (FLT), Weapons Processor, Hand Controller and two Color Cockpit Displays.
The FlashWESS Laser Transmitter (FLT) employs a 904nm MILES coded Laser that provides weapons simulation for missiles, rockets and 30mm cannon. The FLT is manufactured by ICE and embedded inside the MX-10 Surveillance Turret manufactured by L-3 WESCAM and includes an HD Electro-Optical (EO) Infrared (IR) surveillance camera and HD TV. The combined assembly is called the Articulating Sensor Package (ASP).
The Articulating Sensor Package (ASP) interfaces to the existing LUH-TESS components and is mounted on the forward fuselage. The ASP provides day/night video and communicates with the Weapons Processor for target acquisition and engagements.
The Weapons Processor is the interface between the ASP and the LUH-TESS SMODIM. The Weapons Processor controls weapon events and interfaces with audio/video functions, ASP, and SMODIM. The Weapons Processor is packaged in a MIL-STD qualified enclosure and installed in the avionics bay.
The Hand Controller articulates the ASP and controls the zoom and focus of the internal camera. A weapons trigger provides an offensive capability and indicates when the Laser is armed and active. Two Color Cockpit Displays provide situational awareness, targeting, weapon selection, rounds count, range and trigger pull.