PMEL introduces a safer, efficient way of teaching
By Airman 1st Class Seth Haddix, 81st Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published January 29, 2020
KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. (AFNS) --
The 335th Training Squadron at Keesler Air Force Base has introduced a new way of teaching students of the Precision Measurement Equipment Laboratory career field in 2020.
A new virtual reality training experience was designed by Spectral Labs Incorporated to create a more interactive way of training. The training focuses on PMEL career field objectives and allows the user to train as if they are in a working environment.
Airmen in the PMEL career field are responsible for calibrating the equipment used by maintainers and ensuring they are in working order. The expensive and dangerous equipment requires extreme precision to eliminate damage to the equipment and danger to the Airmen.
Master Sgt. Nathan Cyr, 335th TRS PMEL career field training manager, pursued this training to create a more efficient way of teaching.
“We needed a safer and cost-effective training environment that was more susceptible to failure,” Cyr said. “Working with hazardous equipment worth thousands of dollars is not only dangerous but also expensive. Using virtual reality training saves money and reduces the risk of failure.”
Cyr believes the virtual way of learning can be applied across the Air Force and influence others.
“The mobility and pace of this training is unmatched,” Cyr said. “Using virtual reality equipment is faster and can reach more people.”
John Rolando, Spectral Labs Incorporated division manager, believes these capabilities will transform the future of Air Force training.
“The time for virtual reality is now,” Rolando said. “The flexibility and uniformity of digital training will transform the future of training in the Air Force. The technological possibilities are endless.”
After spending multiple years in this career field and in the Air Force, Cyr believes this is the best route to teaching the Airmen.
“The technology brings fun to the job,” Cyr said. “I have calibrated 36 test cells in my career and I have never been more engaged. We can teach the students better by giving the students a more entertaining and interactive way of learning.”