The news follows the announcement on 19th January that the firm had been awarded the contract to upgrade the instrumentation for the French Army’s live combat training centres. The new training system will first be deployed at the force’s Centre d’Entrainement en Zone Urbaine (CENZUB/Urban Zone Training Centre) at Sissonne, in northeast France and then eventually replace Thales’ CENTAURE live training instrumentation system at the French Army’s open terrain operations training centre at CENTAC located in Mailly-le-Camp.
According to General Alain Bouquin, Thales’ army advisor, compared to the CENTAC and CENZUB training system: “CERBERE is more ergonomic and provides more advanced tracking and simulation.” This is particularly important for the CENZUB, where sensors will be scattered around each building at the training centre: “These sensors will detect the trainees’ laser transmitters (which transmit the trainee’s location) and will triangulate that information in order to provide accurate geo-localisation within buildings, including which floor and which room the trainees are standing in,” continues Gen. Bouquin.
The other key innovation in CERBERE is the use of 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) cellular high-speed wireless communications for all communication devices used during the training exercise. In practical terms, this means that trainees as well as instructors, both on the training ground and in the operational centre, will carry 4G LTE communications devices functioning on a secured network that can be accessed only within the CENZUB and CENTAC.
Gen. Bouquin continued that: “Thales will prioritise deliveries for the CENZUB … which will start in 2019 (while) deliveries to the CENTAC will commence between 2022 and 2023.”