To date, Transas has sold a total of 76 Navi-Trainer Professional 5000 simulator systems worldwide. Amongst its happy customers in Asia are the National Keelung Maritime Vocational High School in Taiwan, the Philippines’ ASTRA Marine International and Malaysian ship operator MISC Berhad. The latter was so awed by the NTPRO 5000, which was commercially released in July 2009, that it acquired two. We’re not at all surprised by such market response.
Transas, we have blatantly said before, is the name to reckon with in marine simulators. In the NTPRO 5000, the Russian company narrows the gap between reality and the simulation of it like never before. “Our customers and industry demand the highest training standards,” says Project Division Director Andrey Sitkov, “Ongoing improvements in mathematical model realism and new model creation tools meet these needs. Advancements in new wave and interaction modelling along with new features of grounding, parametric rolling, broaching and many more raise behaviour realism to a completely new level.”
Particular attention has been paid to radar. The new radar picture generation algorithm considers the geometry of objects, their relative position, the reflection capability of materials, 3D wave, antenna three-dimensional motion and earth curvature. It generates an accurate and highly realistic radar picture in accordance with all modern requirements for simulation training. There’s a slew of realistic effects: shaded areas, loss of targets in heavy sea, radar picture change depending on ship’s rolling and pitching, echo-signals of different range depending on geometry and reflection capability of a shore line. All these features enable students to practice radar operations in a life-like environment. Monitors with different screen resolutions can also be used.
To achieve its stunning visual effects, the NTPRO 5000 employs a brand-new Seagull 5000 visualisation system. The instructor can control wind-generated and swell components independently. The simulator uses a number of sea spectrums: Pierson-Moskowitz, ITTC (International Towing Tank Conference), JONSWAP (Joint North Sea Wave Project) and user-defined. Visual presentation of a new wave includes reflection of the entire scene, water translucency, white caps, foam and splashes, and 3D bow wave. The instructor can set any colour for the sea surface and manually control sun and moon position and phase to generate visually attractive scenarios.
Not the least of the areas that have seen a make-over is the instructor station. The NTPRO 5000 has the new capability to obtain real-time on-chart plotting of the relative position of vessels in respect of each other, their CPA and TCPA, which are continually recalculated in order to consider any change in speed or course of any of the marked vessels. The horizontal depth cross-sections feature allows the instructor to evaluate depths, helping to get a clear presentation of the deep-water routes in this area or to obtain information on danger shoals and banks. Graphic presentation of ship motion parameters enable advanced research capabilities and comprehensive debriefing.
Throw in the integration of type approved Navi-Sailor 4000 ECDIS Multifunction Display (ECDIS, Radar, Conning); built-in VHF and intercom solutions; voice communication and CCTV video recording (with time synchronised playback for debriefing). And what you have is a simulator that makes you feel that Transas rocks while the competition sucks. Those who are still on NTPRO 4000 will definitely want to upgrade, which is fairly easy as the Transas development policy is to support compatibility between old and new versions of its products.
Explains Mr Sitkov: “Customers could retain control panels, consoles, monitors, projectors etc. Some computers, however, will need to be upgraded due to the higher load of some applications (e.g., use of a higher-end video card). If the customer is subscribed to the Transerv program, most probably all such upgrades already would be performed as part of the Transerv contract. Thus the procedure will not require major investments.” Those in the Philippines who don’t wish to be left behind by the new technology had better call up the local Transas distributor, Captain Roberto Uy. ~Barista Uno