Submarine Crews Will Learn Navigation, Mariner Skills in Simulators

By Grace V. Jean
GROTON, Conn. — The Navy is looking to buy a virtual submarine bridge trainer to teach crews navigation and mariner skills.

The Naval Undersea Warfare Center in Newport, R.I., developed a submarine bridge trainer prototype that immerses crews in a simulated environment viewed from the top of a submarine’s flying sail or bridge.  

“You open the door, you walk in, you’re standing on a bridge pedestal inside of a sphere, looking 360 degrees,” said Capt. Kenneth Swan, commanding officer of the submarine learning center, which oversees the Navy’s undersea warfare training. “There could be five of us in there training as if we were on the bridge, versus one person wearing the helmet doing virtual reality.”

At submarine schools today students typically do most of their learning after the fact during a walk-through reconstruction of the scenario with an instructor.

The simulator works, “now we have to pay for it; we have to roll it out and put it at our training sites,” Swan said. He is awaiting funding approval. “I’m convinced we’ll roll out the submarine bridge trainer and I’ll be given an execute order, and we’ll have a plan to do that.”
If the Navy agrees to procure the system in its 2012 budget, the submarine school here will receive it first, followed by Pearl Harbor.

Topics: Shipbuilding, Submarines, Simulation Modeling Wargaming and Training, ComputerBased Training

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