Spanish maritime design and engineering company PROES combine the use of their own desktop simulator with the full-mission simulators at FORCE Technology in order to bring their projects to the next level.

Desktop simulations are a necessity

PROES purchased their own desktop simulator from FORCE Technology three years ago as they found that they were offered a good balance between price and performance. José Manuel Garcia, Head of Marine Terminals, Port and Development at PROES, elaborates, ”We also appreciate the flexibility FORCE Technology offers. You can start with something simple and then build on to make it more complex and therefore more realistic. This way we got a flexible simulator system at an affordable price.”

José also states that the use of a desktop simulator is not only a benefit – it is actually a requirement from the costumers. Since PROES is a part of the engineering process, from the conceptual stage to the finished product, they need a simulator to help them through the design process to reach the best solution regarding many different aspects such as required navigational areas and detailed sizing of marine structures. “Our customers demand a numerical verification when it comes to everything from optimising canal widths, structural response or moored vessel behavioural studies. Today this kind of tool is a necessity!”

Taking the project to the next level

PROES use their desktop simulator for the engineering and design stages of their projects. When a project stage requires further detail and more specific devices, they use the full-mission simulators available at FORCE Technology. “It is a very efficient way of working because we already have the numerical models prepared by using our desktop simulator at home. When we bring the model to FORCE Technology’s facilities, it is ready for implementation in the full-mission simulator. Therefore the workflow can be described as a seamless process,” says José.

José also explains that the easy implementation is not the only benefit of using the full-mission simulators. The knowledge of the employees is also a crucial part of the process. “We have obtained a lot of knowledge before we come here, but the tug masters and designers at FORCE Technology bring us further with their knowledge of e.g. manoeuvring strategies. On top of that, the realism of the virtual universe is an essential part.”

According to José, the full-mission simulator also functions as a necessary validation and optimisation tool when designing a well-functioning harbour facility. The designers and engineers at PROES obtain the navigation areas using the desktop simulator. However, they need the full-mission simulator to confirm the design. They also involve pilots, captains, tug masters and others to learn what needs to be optimised or improved.

Naturally, the main reason for the visits is to create the optimal product for the customers. Therefore, PROES bring the stakeholders on these visits in order for them to experience the realism of the virtual universe in the full-mission simulators. However, the situation is also an opportunity to incorporate the perception of the end-users into the project: “By bringing the pilots, harbour masters, nautical and environmental authorities, owners and developers along, we can adjust, optimize and validate the project. This way we end up with a successful product that everyone feels comfortable with” says José.

Knowledge sharing goes both ways

During their visits, PROES also provide FORCE Technology with information that can improve the products. “Our mariners and pilots are accustomed to a very specific traffic and a specific type of vessel. Therefore, they can equip FORCE Technology with knowledge to make the simulations even more realistic. These visits give us the opportunity to combine our knowledge, which gives us an upgraded response model that complies better with our reality,” says José and continues, “We learn a lot from FORCE Technology, but sometimes we are also able to provide some assistance.”

The yearlong cooperation between Proes and FORCE Technology is a huge success. “We feel very comfortable with FORCE Technology in terms of flexibility and quick response time on the service. A quick reaction time is a great benefit to us because then we can offer our customers a flexible service if they have last minute changes or additional wishes. We appreciate the combination of skills, capabilities and flexibility FORCE Technology has to offer,” José concludes.

Josè Manuel Garcia, head of marine terminals, port and development at PROES (on the left) in one of the full-mission simulators at FORCE Technology.