The UK Newcastle College has installed a virtual reality system for offshore wind training at its Energy Academy.
Delivered by the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, in partnership with Scotland’s Energy Skills Partnership, Heriot Watt University and Animmersion VR, the Immersive Hybrid Reality (iHR) training facility replicates working conditions experienced by turbine engineers operating on offshore wind farms.
The technology allows users to virtually find and diagnose faults, in a realistic but safe environment which is said to help them develop the vital skills they need to work in the wind industry, ORE Catapult said.
“The immersive Hybrid Reality installation at Newcastle College is a huge, innovative step in training and skills development for the next generation of offshore wind technicians,” said Tony Quinn, ORE Catapult Operations Director.
“We are delighted to see this project come to fruition as a dedicated training facility, provided by a high-quality education and skills provider here in the North East.”
The technology is expected to allow Newcastle College to support the region’s energy sector, as part of the UK’s aim to create 27,000 skilled jobs in the industry by 2030. Future engineers at the Energy Academy will immediately start training with the new system.
“Newcastle College has always been aligned to North East LEP priorities and our training and development here at the Energy Academy is centred around the skills required by industry,” said Director of Business Partnerships at Newcastle College Marc McPake.
“Collaboration with employers is at the centre of everything we do and our partnership with ORE Catapult is a fantastic example of a relationship which will benefit our students and an entire industry.”