Marines test cutting-edge tech for bullet trajectory and simulated wounds

February 21, 2024
1 min read


  • The Marine Corps fielded new technology in a California exercise to measure bullet trajectory and simulated wounds.
  • The new equipment called the Marine Corps Tactical Instrumentation System (MCTIS) provided more accurate data compared to older systems.

In its largest annual war game, the Marine Corps outfitted thousands of Marines with new technology to measure bullet trajectory down to the inch, simulated wounds in different places on the body, and real-time individual Marine locations. The exercise in California included 2,700 Marines, 230 vehicles, and more than a dozen buildings equipped with the MCTIS. The system provides data that is usable at all levels, from squad leader to regimental commander. The equipment can tell Marines when they are being bracketed by indirect fire, whether and where they have been wounded, and more.

The MCTIS allows for after-action reviews and provides reliable and effective feedback for training. The system replaces older generations of “laser tag” training systems and aims to change the way Marines train and analyze their combat ability. The equipment includes body harnesses, helmet harnesses, weapon mounts, and sensors attached to vehicles. Saab Inc. was awarded the contract for the new force-on-force system in 2021.

The ultimate goal of the MCTIS is to make data available from individual Marines to higher echelons and provide a more realistic training experience that reflects today’s battlefield conditions. It is part of the Marine Corps’ efforts to modernize training and become more agile and adaptable. The system was able to demonstrate its capability in the exercise and aims to revolutionize how Marines train and prepare for combat.

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