SAN DIEGO – The Center for Surface Combat Systems’ (CSCS) Combined Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) / Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Trainer (CIAT), onboard Naval Base San Diego (NBSD), recently trained Sailors from USS Lake Champlain (CG 57) and USS Cowpens (CG 63).
“The overall purpose of the CIAT is to provide our watchstanders a state-of-the-art training lab to detect, control and engage simulated modern threats in challenging environments,” explained Lt. Cmdr. Reisheid Dixon, CSCS Det San Diego’s officer in charge.
In total, 91 Sailors from Lake Champlain and Cowpens spent the week fighting their way through a hostile U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility, working together in watchteams to overcome waves of adversary attacks.
“The scenarios are more detailed and challenging than anything we have experienced in surface combat systems training,” said Lt. j.g. Manny Agah, Cowpens’ air defense officer. “I plan to keep our team in the CIAT as much as possible.”
The CIAT is completely customizable by CSCS instructors. They can reduce visibility, increase wave heights, degrade weapons systems, overwhelm the radars with clutter returns, and in the end, force every single watchstander in combat to adapt.
“This is how we achieve combat readiness,” Dixon said. “This is how we train our Sailors to fight and win.”
In addition, cruisers and destroyers going through an extensive shipyard or dry dock period now have a combat training outlet to call their own. Ships like Champlain and Cowpens are utilizing the lab’s high fidelity threat modeling and scenario customization for watchstander proficiency and qualification regardless of their position in the training cycle.
“We are talking year-round sustainment training,” said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Israel Villa.
What makes the CIAT truly unique is its impressive debrief capability.
It records synchronized ground truth, instructor and watch-stander console displays and audio to demonstrate the cause and effect of every decision.
“CIAT is the biggest training game-changer I have seen in my career,” said Villa.
CSCS' mission is to develop and deliver surface ship combat systems training to achieve surface warfare superiority. CSCS headquarters' staff oversees 14 learning sites and detachments, including CSCS Det San Diego, located throughout the continental United States, Hawaii, and Japan and manages and operates a Naval Education and Training Command (NETC) training division in Rota, Spain.
CSCS has two CIATs, one in San Diego, which opened December 2018, and one in Norfolk, which opened July 2019. In addition, there are two Reconfigurable Combat Information Center Trainers, a CIAT minus the ASW capability, at the AEGIS Training and Readiness Center (ATRC).
For information about the Center for Surface Combat Systems, visit: https://www.netc.navy.mil/centers/cscs/ or Facebook