Google Cloud said today it has reached an agreement with the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) and the U.S. Air Force (USAF) to modernize initial flight training for Air Force pilots through the use of cloud technology.

USAF will host its immersive training devices (ITDs) on Google Cloud, which will help scale the project to thousands of users and increase access to training time.

“Through the Joint Immersive Training System (JITS), the U.S. Air Force has committed to increasing readiness of its pilots,” Google Cloud said in a press release. “By using commercial, off-the-shelf equipment, virtual reality headsets, joystick, throttle and rudder pedal controls, and video gaming chairs – the Air Force will be able to build its own [ITDs] that can be deployed more efficiently and at scale.”

Mike Daniels, VP of Global Public Sector Sales at Google Cloud, said in a conference call that “if new devices come along like a new virtual reality headset, a different set of pedals, a different type of joystick – whatever they want to plug into from an API perspective into this – it can be delivered on the cloud and accessible worldwide.”

Further, DIU will be able to provide “a consistent interface for USAF’s learning management system, as well as a single location for storing and managing pilot training data,” he said.

“Adopting Google Cloud provides a consistent and secure user experience for student pilots regardless of where they undergo their training,” said Daniels. “And with Google Workspace, we’ll also enable collaboration and remote learning with the best instructors who may be located in another state or at another Air Force Base.”

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.