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Virtual Marine Technology (VMT), provider of real-time simulation technologies for small marine craft, is the runner up of a 2007 Seatrade Award, announced Monday, May 21, in London, England.
VMT’s Lifeboat Launching Simulator was short-listed in the 2007 Seatrade Awards Safety at Sea category. VMT was the only Canadian company shortlisted out of 91 entries worldwide. The Lifeboat Launching Simulator has also been featured in a number of publications and programs, including a piece on CBC’s The National commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Ocean Ranger tragedy and highlighted the advancement of safety training, practices and procedures since 1982.
The Seatrade Awards were started in 1988 to recognize achievement and innovation within the international maritime community. The award encourages advancement in the shipping industry by acknowledging companies and individuals that make substantial contributions in the fields of safety at sea, countering marine pollution and innovation in ship industries. An esteemed independent panel of judges representing a cross-section of the maritime industry chooses the award winners.
VMT’s immersive Lifeboat Launching Simulator allows trainees to practice lifeboat launch and departure operations in conditions considered too dangerous for live boat exercises, such as launching in harsh seas, reacting to equipment faults, and performing in reduced visibility. The simulator is comprised of a complete mockup of a lifeboat and instrumentation, a 270 degree-projected visual environment, and an audio system. Realistic mathematical models of lifeboat water entry and performance in high sea states were derived from extensive scale model testing and form the backbone technology. Training scenarios focus on providing the trainee with a valuable skill set including timing a vessel launch into waves, quick evacuation and escape procedures, and reacting to equipment malfunctions.
“The technology used by Virtual Marine Technology to improve the safety of life at sea was developed through research undertaken at Memorial University and by alumni of the university,” said Dr. Axel Meisen, president and vice-chancellor of Memorial University. “Recognition for this work at Seatrade provides another example of the university’s commitment to excellence in the global ocean technology market.”
Randy Billard, president of VMT, said, “it is fantastic to be recognized for your achievements on a worldwide stage, and a compliment to our team and the growing community of ocean expertise in Newfoundland. Being acknowledged by the Seatrade Awards proves that the quality and effectiveness of the product is what really matters, and VMT is pleased to provide a technology with such impact and benefit to the safety of life at sea.”
VMT is a member of Memorial University’s Genesis Centre and the Ocean Technology Enterprise Centre at the Institute for Ocean Technology. The company’s technical team is housed at Enthuzium, the incubation centre of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, where the team is completing the development of a Fast Rescue Craft Simulator for the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary Pacific in British Columbia.
About Virtual Marine Technology Inc.
VMT is improving the safety of life at sea by providing realistic, effective and safe training technologies for small marine craft operators. Based in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, VMT’s simulators provide a means for personnel to train in various environments, ensuring they are prepared for actual emergency evacuation and rescue scenarios without the risks inherent in training at sea. For more information regarding Virtual Marine Technology or its simulation solutions please visit www.vmtechnology.ca
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