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Inflatable walls for training

Survitec has introduced its Inflatable Walls Training System (IWTS) to the European market after finalising a licensing agreement for the product in 2018.

After uptake in the United States, IWTS was presented to European civil defence and security leaders at the Enforce Tac event in Nürnberg, Germany in March. Survitec is now taking the walls on a year-long roadshow to take in ten or more European countries.

Based on Survitec’s inflatable technology, IWTS is used to create temporary structures for use in training exercises to simulate the built environments that civil and defence forces operate in. Recent contracts include the US Air Force.

The flatpack design for storage and transport of the walls makes IWTS suited the firm says to military and law enforcement use as it can be deployed wherever a unit is based and reconfigured to create layouts. Walls can withstand non-lethal training ordnance allowing armed forces to convert their own weapons to aid realism

Walls are in use in the British Army and Royal Air Force, Australian Army and Austrian army. Civil applications include police forces in Switzerland, Germany, Italy and Hong Kong.

David Stelling, IWTS Category Manager at Survitec said: “Being unfamiliar with the layout of a building or urban area that personnel are faced with in a real-world combat, active shooter or hostage situation is a real concern for the individuals involved. Developing tactics ahead of incursion are often addressed through the creation of a simulation of the threat area, using boards and bricks or other difficult-to-configure materials to create a layout or floor plan. This can be a time-consuming and expensive activity. Survitec’s IWTS offers a rapidly deployed and economic solution to the challenge of providing a reality-based environment in which to train.”

A room, corridor, entrance, exit and window can be recreated so that when operators face the actual structure, they already have the appropriate knowledge to make the correct tactical decisions.

IWTS comprises five basic shapes which can be configured to create layouts. All wall assemblies are available individually while there are six standard configurations – three geared towards law enforcement and three for military. Each wall section inflates in about 90 seconds and a two- or three-room layout can be created in less than 20 minutes with a 2000m2 layout taking two hours, or less depending on the number of personnel, the supplier says. Capability can be further enhanced with a breach door module and roof system for low light and smoke containment.

The waterproof, UV-resistant fabric walls have been used for training in car parks, garages, fields and warehouses. They could also be deployed on a ship if required.

The walls are made from a rubber internal air bladder and tough vinyl outer skin and are currently manufactured in Survitec’s Dunmurry site in Northern Ireland.
Survitec entered into an exclusive licensing agreement for IWTS in early 2018 with Battlefield Sim Limited.


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