Madison-based software development company Holos, Inc.
has been awarded a $1.8 million government contract to further study its potential to fill capability gaps in the Department of Airforce’s (DAF) current technological training methods.
The $1.8 million Tactical Funding Increase Contract was awarded by AFVentures,
the commercial investment arm of the Air Force.
AFVentures is matching $1.8 million in venture capital funds to help Holos scale its platform across the United States Air Force.
Holos is developing immersive learning experiences leveraging Virtual Reality. The startup was incubated in UW-Madison’s HyperX program, a multi-disciplinary, student-run organization for hands-on experience with new technologies and innovation.
Over the next two years, Holos will be able to complete final product developments and integrate with Dynepic's MOTAR platform, which is used for training delivery across the U.S. Air Force. This will enable a new class of users across the U.S. Air Force to rapidly create, remix, and share immersive VR training experiences.
"This is a significant milestone towards deploying Holos as one of the de-facto VR training creation tools for delivery across the U.S. Air Force, putting the management of these virtual exercises directly into the hands of our airmen," said Daniel Borkhus,
co-founder and chief executive officer of Holos. "Crossing the 'Valley of Death' and taking a technology from R&D to a program of record is never easy. We have so many teammates, advisors, stakeholders, and investors to thank for helping us reach this inflection point."
Holos also announced this week that AFWERX,
a U.S. Air Force program aimed at engaging new entrepreneurs, selected the company for a $75,000 SBIR Phase I grant.
Holos will focus on using VR to rapidly upskill Air Force personnel working in harsh environments.
"The Air Force needs adaptable training content that can be both rapidly modified to address the specific emerging need and also delivered modularly for just-in-time training," said Borkhus."However, current training modules are often bespoke and are unable to be segmented and used separately as needed. Holos enables rapid and on-demand retrieval of specific training content in austere locations.”
The company aims to reduce preparation and execution times in deployed environments by half.