The Office of Naval Research (ONR) TechSolutions programme has delivered a new 3D diesel generator simulator to Pearl Harbor naval facilities, to train sailors of the Virginia-class nuclear powered submarines to operate and repair them.
Called the Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training System (MRTS), the new advanced 3D software allows sailors to use 50in touchscreens to view and access all parts of the generators aboard the submarines.
ONR command master chief Jessie Thomas said: "This will be a big help for the fleet, getting sailors more training time and providing potentially significant cost savings.
"It has been challenging for all the sailors who need training on these generators to get enough work time on the actual boats, particularly given that the subs can be out to sea for extended periods.
"A state of the art simulator allows far more time to learn how these complex machines work."
Developed in response to chief of naval operations admiral Jonathan Greenert's navigation plan for 2015 to 2019, the new software is expected to provide estimated cost avoidances of $27m over building more generators for training.
The funds can be used for significant expansion of training capabilities.
Naval air warfare training systems division Virginia diesel programme project manager Darrell Conley said: "The beauty of the system is that it should reduce the amount of lab time, while increasing the scenarios the instructor can put the students through.
"The software can be loaded on any MRTS 3D trainer in the fleet, allowing any boat to schedule required training."
Over the next several months, sailors will work with the generator simulator at Pearl Harbor, following this period it may be transferred to naval sea systems command's undersea warfare directorate.
Image: The new diesel generator simulator lets sailors use 50-inch touchscreens to see and access all parts of the generators aboard the Virginia-class submarines. Photo: courtesy of US Office of Naval Research.