The upgrade project is being carried out during the summer and will include installation of the simulation systems and improvements to the buildings that house them.
“Although our simulation facilities are continually updated and improved we understand the need to keep at the cutting-edge of technology and quality in order to meet the changing training requirements in the industry,” said Paul Hodgson, technical and projects manager, School of Marine Simulation & Senior Marine at South Tyneside College.
“Our first Kongsberg simulator was installed in 1997, when we decided that the Polaris ship’s bridge simulator/Neptune engine room simulator combination was a more powerful and flexible system than the available competition.”
“This opinion hasn’t changed and we are looking forward to offering the possibility for our students to train on the very latest versions of these simulators, using the extensive library of exercises and models we have developed over the years.”
The project will feature a total refurbishment for the main Polaris bridge simulator, which includes two full-mission bridges and four part task bridges, with new consoles including K-Bridge and Polaris Radar ARPA upgrades.
Multiflex panels will also be used, which offer the ability to change functionality through software, rather than swapping out hardware panels.
The bridge will feature a new projection system that is twice as bright and provides twice the resolution of the existing system, while all standard PCs will be replaced and the computer network upgraded from CAT5 to CAT6 cabling.
The second Polaris bridge simulator, which consists of eight desktop simulators and a VTS simulator, will move to a newly refurbished building at STC, which brings all School of Simulation & Senior Marine simulators into the same location.
The school's full mission engine room simulator will be upgraded to include use of touch screen technology and new Local Operating Stations for mimic presentations, as well as 65-inch touch screens for interactive virtual engine room applications.
The simulators will allow different engine types to use the same hardware, as all dials, indicators, buttons etc are presented on screens and either controlled by mouse/trackball or touch.
All four full mission simulator models (MAN B&W 5L90MC VLCC L11-V, Wärtsilä RT-Flex Container L11, M22 PC Ferry-IV and DE22 Cruise vessel-III) will be integrated with the main Polaris bridge simulator.