DHS explores virtual world technologies

Department looks at potential uses for training

The Homeland Security Department wants to know how virtual world technologies can be used for training, according to a notice from the department.

DHS’ Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) wants information on immersive virtual world technologies that could help authorities prepare for different types of hazard incidents and respond to those incidents, according to a request for information (RFI). The department also wants data on Web-based training capabilities for incident responders, the notice posted on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site said.

S&T’s Infrastructure and Geophysical Division (IGD) is considering the potential applications of virtual world technologies to support training, along with assessing response tactics, techniques and plans, according to the RFI. IGD wants information on using virtual world technology to support multi-agency coordination, DHS said.

Meanwhile, the IGD is also exploring Web-based emergency management training tools that are in development or may be available as commercial-off-the-shelf products, according to the RFI. The purpose of the training software is to help teach emergency managers and others who work in preparedness how to perform their jobs during an emergency, the RFI said.

Although the original response date for the RFI was Sept. 16, DHS may review white papers submitted by Oct. 2, the department said.

About the Author

Ben Bain is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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