Virtual reality (VR) has entered maritime industry, and is now increasingly used in product training. As one of the leading suppliers of offshore gangways, Uptime International now uses VR simulators to reduce training costs for its customers.
Morild Interaktiv recently launched a VR crew gangway simulator for Uptime International. The simulator is purpose built to train gangway operators in procedures and handling the gangway.
“We are committed to being at the forefront of development and giving our customers the best tools,” says Olav-Rasmus Vorren CEO at Morild Interaktiv which specialises in developing training solutions based on high-end simulator technology.
Bjørnar Huse director of sales and development at Uptime International tells that it is expensive for their customers to train on the use of the gangway on board the vessel. With a VR simulator, the operators can train on shore as often as they want before they use it in actual operations.
The simulator technology is very well suited for learning procedures and testing out functionality, and not least for repeating the operations multiple times. In particular, simulators based on VR are well suited for training purposes since the cost is low compared to traditional simulators.
“We now deliver VR simulator along with our gangways. First out is the company Candy Fleet located in Louisiana, which has many vessels and operators, and thus a great need for product training,” says Svein Ove Haugen sales & marketing manager at Uptime International.
The crew boat gangway simulator delivered to Candy Fleet consists of a laptop, joysticks and VR headset. Operators are trained in operating the gangway and land it under different weather conditions.
“The operators have to train completely without risk of damaging the walkway or landing platform. In addition, they are trained to handle all functions before operating the actual gangway. This significantly reduces training costs and time spent,“ says Svein Ove Haugen.
Initially, it is the company's 12 meter gangway that is offered with VR simulator, but Bjørnar Huse has plans to offer simulators along with several of their products.
"The technology in VR has come so far today that it is easy for everyone to use the equipment, and we get feedback from our customers that this is useful and cost-saving for them," explains Huse. He adds that this is a supplement in the training of operators, and cannot replace the certification schemes offered by the company.
The simulators are developed in close collaboration between Uptime and Morild Interaktiv.