MTCR Introduces N e w Shipboard E n g i n e e r i n g T r a i n i n g Systems

— F r e e Literature Available Research and experience indicates . . . initially through Navy submarine fire control training and later through shiphandling training . . .

that using sophisticated computergenerated models during classroom review of training conducted during computer-based simulation is valuable, particularly when the material is presented via a large screen display.

Through instructor and student interactive use of computerdriven review equipment, key concepts are effectively illustrated, reducing training time by up to 50 percent and achieving better student understanding of the underlying concepts associated with the complex process being simulated.

These impressive results cannot be matched by traditional simulation training methodology. Additionally, the graphic presentation of student performance data during simulator exercise critique sessions can provide important insights on student performance that traditional discussion cannot match.

Based on the success of these new computer-based capabilities in various training applications, it was suggested that they may also have substantial benefits for training marine engineering skills. In 1985, District 2, MEBA-AMO, Safety and Education Plan joined with the U.S. Maritime Administration in a Cooperative Research Program to develop a prototype system for marine engineering training applications. The Computer-Aided Marine Engineering Training System (CAMETS), developed by Ship Analytics during this program, consists of a micro computer, a graphics terminal employed as an instructor station, and a large screen display system driven by a Ship Analytics-developed software program. (See Figure 1).

CAMETS is presently being utilized to support ongoing training at the Maritime Training and Research Center (MTRC) simulation facility in Toledo, Ohio. Operating Systems include: • A medium-speed diesel propulsion system comprised of twin diesel engines modeled on a Pielstick 2.2 "V" 16-cylinder turbocharged medium- speed reversable engine.

• A steam propulsion system consisting of high-pressure ahead and low-pressure astern impulse-type turbines.

• An electrical generation system comprised of one turbo and two diesel alternators which can be configured to a variety of training requirements.

• Cargo/ballast system based on a Great Lakes self-unloading bulk carrier with five cargo holds and 13 ballast tanks.

CAMETS can be employed to provide a variety of interactive graphic displays—illustrated in Figures 2 and 3—which can be effectively utilized even if a training facility does not have an engine room simulator. These "standalone" displays allow the instructor to change a wide variety of settings (e.g., fuel temperature, injector fouling) on the simulated engine, and illustrate graphically their impact on engine performance.

The "linked" displays, which ob- tain their data from exercises conducted on the engine room simulator, graphically depict variations in key engine parameters and student control actions over the entire exercise period. Multiple parameters can be presented on one display, facilitating instructor/student discussion of key interactions (e.g., the impact of turbocharger fouling on fuel consumption). Key benefits of this technology are: • Reduction of the time required to achieve specific learning objectives, resulting in course length reduced by 50 percent.

• Reduction of the need for an instructor through self-teaching modes thereby increasing instructor productivity and the required ration of instructors to trainees.

• Built-in measurement of trainee performance to assure learning is achieved.

• Overcomes language barriers and instructor-related variables which play a dominant role in effective training (e.g., the computer model, arranged graphically, is easily understood by the trainee as opposed to an instructor's attempt to explain a complex multi-variable process in his own words).

A one-week training program was designed specifically to implement CAMETS, primarily for chief engineers.

However, the majority of the material covered is also appropriate for watch-standers, prospective watch-standers, and shore-side personnel.

The program focuses on the effective operation of a mediumspeed diesel plant with a controllable- pitch propeller. Other potential shipboard energy-saving areas, such as proper tank heating and vessel operational planning, are also addressed.

The training program, using both the MTRC engine room simulator and the Computer-Aided Marine Engineering Training System, translate into effective dollars saved through energy movement.

Additional courses offered at the MTRC are: Casualty Control and Emergency Procedures; Effective Monitoring of Unattended Machinery Spaces; Diesel Plant Operation for Steam Engineers; and Operation of Automatic Load-Sharing Electrical Generator Systems.

For more information on available training programs and a free copy of the MTRC brochure, C i r c l e 5 4 on Reader Service Card

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 37,  Jul 15, 1986

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