Simulation training for tomorrow

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Tony White (author), LEUT Harley Slatter (author), POIS Yuri Ramsey (photographer)

Location(s): HMAS Watson, NSW

Topic(s): Training, HMAS Watson

Lieutenant Chris Standon instructs Midshipman Harrion Rees in the bridge simulator at HMAS Watson.  (photo: POIS Yuri Ramsey)
Lieutenant Chris Standon instructs Midshipman Harrion Rees in the bridge simulator at HMAS Watson.

The Bridge Training Faculty at HMAS Watson, on the south head of Sydney Harbour, has used simulation systems to deliver effective training to sailors and officers throughout Navy for years but recently the ability to increase training throughput with simulation has been given a boost.

Lieutenant John Gregory, Second-in-Charge at the Navy’s Bridge Training Faculty said from July the capacity to train Junior Warfare Application Course Phase IV officers had increased by a third.

“With our new systems and trainer development we have the potential to further increase capacity to 54 trainees per course,” Lieutenant Gregory said.

The new capability is the result of installing two new bridge simulators, one full mission simulator and one partial mission simulator to meet increased training demands.

“The new simulators also provide ships the ability to conduct further collective bridge training in between the courses.”

Lieutenant Chris Standen uses these high technology simulators to teach the next generation of Maritime Warfare Officers how to manoeuvre warships in different situations.

As one of the team based at Watson, Lieutenant Standen also draws on his experience in operations patrolling our northern borders and tackling piracy off the East African coast to help train the groups he sees.

He joined Navy in 2007 to become a Maritime Warfare Officer himself, a role he has enjoyed since day one, and still thinks is the best job in Navy.

“Being a Maritime Warfare Officer means different challenges every day, with different opportunities to test yourself and your people”.

“These junior officers at Watson are just starting that journey but it’s one they won’t regret,” Lieutenant Standen said.

From December 2017 further upgrades will start to take place.

Advances in technology have allowed the removal of projectors and the use of LED screens.

The new simulation systems aim to provide increased realism of visuals to better reflect what life is like at sea.

Watson is one of four Navy bases on Sydney Harbour, and focuses on warfare training.

The base on South Head trains both officers and sailors in combat systems, navigation, bridge routines and systems through theory, simulation and practical activities.

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