Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division (NAWCTSD)

NAWCTSD is the Navy’s principal source of a wide spectrum of training solutions for the Warfighter. We have an exceptionally skilled military and civilian acquisition, research and development workforce, which along with our advanced laboratories comprise a center of excellence that produces leading-edge advances in training systems and human performance. Our site in Central Florida gives us the advantage of co-location with other military acquisition, research and development organizations, the University of Central Florida, and close proximity to the center of the simulation-based entertainment industry.


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The roots of NAWCTSD reach back to April 1941 when then-Commander Luis de Florez became head of the new Special Devices Desk in the Engineering Division of the Navy’s Bureau of Aeronautics. De Florez championed the use of “synthetic training devices” and urged the Navy to undertake development of such devices to increase readiness. In June, the office became the Special Devices Section. Throughout World War II, the Section developed numerous innovative training devices including ones that used motion pictures to train aircraft gunners, a device to train precision bombing, and a terrain modeling kit to facilitate operational planning in the field. The Special Devices Section grew and became the Special Devices Division. In August 1946, the Division, at its newest home at Port Washington, Long Island, New York, was commissioned the Special Devices Center.


As NAWCTSD evolved and grew during the 20th century, it was aligned at various times under several different parent organizations within the Navy. In 1956, it became the Naval Training Device Center. During the mid-1960s, the Center moved from its Long Island location to Orlando, Florida. In 1985, the then-Naval Training Equipment Center became the Naval Training Systems Center. In 1988, the Center moved to its present headquarters building near Orlando, named for its founding father, Admiral de Florez. In 1993, the Center became the Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division (NAWCTSD). Today, NAWCTSD is a significant component of the Naval Air Systems Command.


The roles of the Department of Defense, the Navy, and the Naval Air Systems Command are changing. Simulation and training are now key to ensuring military preparedness and to adapting to new and changing roles and missions. These changes, coupled with diverse threat potentials, require innovative approaches to how our military trains. NAWCTSD will continue to play a vital role in responding to evolving training and simulation needs. NAWCTSD will also continue to work on transfering its products to non-military applications through cooperative agreements.

The Command has implemented competency alignment, allowing it to continue its high-quality support of the Warfighter. Hand-in-hand with competency alignment, the Command has adopted the Learning Organization principles, allowing NAWCTSD to continuously transform itself. As we progress into the 21st century, NAWCTSD will continue to play a vital role in maintaining the defense posture of this nation and our allies around the world, and ensure the readiness and safety of our warfighters.