AUSA 2020 at a Glance: Modernization, Synthetic Training, and Project Convergence

AUSA 2020
Dr. E. Casey Wardynski, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs (left), along with Gen. Paul E. Funk II, Commanding General, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, record a public service announcement prior to a scheduled meeting to discuss operationalizing the Army’s People Strategy for a ready and resilient force at TRADOC Headquarters, Fort Eustis, VA, Oct. 1, 2020. (U.S. Army photo by David Overson)

Last week, AUSA 2020 took place on a virtual platform for the first time. While attendees normally gather in-person in Washington, D.C. every year to discuss the latest and greatest updates from the Army, COVID-19 had other plans. Instead, attendees were ushered into a virtual venue where they could find their expected materials like show dailies and session overviews and could then listen in on important updates from defense leaders either on-demand or live from the comfort of their home offices.

Key themes discussed at this year’s show included the relationship between readiness and modernization, updates in synthetic training techniques, and a big focus on Project Convergence – both lessons learned from Project Convergence 2020 and the path forward for Project Convergence 2021.

In case you couldn’t attend this year, Modern Integrated Warfare captured some of the top themes and trends discussed at this year’s show. Here’s some of what attendees and speakers had to share at AUSA 2020:

Military readiness is closely tied to modernization and prioritizing more collaborative and holistic concepts like multi-domain operations according to experts at AUSA 2020. Several discussions at the show delved into modernization plans and what challenges are driving those efforts.

Great strides are being made in synthetic training technologies. In a time when being able to train at the point of need is more important than ever, realism, fidelity, and training efficacy are all continuously improving with the help of industry leaders.

The Modern Integrated Warfare team actually had the opportunity to hear directly from training technology experts in a media round table focused on One World Terrain and how the ability to create a more realistic training terrain contributes greatly to the lethality and readiness of today’s warfighters.

Perhaps one of the most discussed topics at AUSA 2020 was Project Convergence and important takeaways from recent demonstrations that will be carried over into next year’s iteration of the program. Various AUSA 2020 speakers pointed to the importance of collaboration across domains and branches to make Project Convergence 2021 successful.

While this year looked quite different than years past for the AUSA Annual event, attendees were still able to hear important updates from defense leaders about the future of the space and important innovations taking place with the warfighter in mind. We look forward to seeing what the next year holds.