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New 360 tug simulator at The Maritime Skills Academy in Portsmouth going live 6 December 2021

Published on: 11 November 2021

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The Maritime Skills Academy (part of the Viking Maritime Group) is further developing its training portfolio by expanding its state-of-the-art simulation facilities at the Portsmouth centre. 

The new addition will include a 360-degree full mission tug simulator, complete with Rolls Royce controls and electronics, and genuine Damen hardware winch controls. 

The intention is that this new simulator will be fully integrated with the existing full bridge simulator, to provide realistic exercises where tug operations can be combined with ship handling courses, to further enhance the training opportunities.

Viking MSA’s model of providing an innovative and tailored approach to training, has led to a significant increase in demand for simulator training from tug operators and ports alike.

Our fully integrated 360 tug simulator has realistic simulator visualisation and supports different types of training in:

  • Offshore tugging and towing
  • Ship assistance work
  • High-speed escort work
  • Operating various anchor equipment
  • Oil rig and platform moves
  • Integrated tug master and pilot training

All types of tugboats are simulated, including conventional single-screw tugs, conventional twin-screw tugs, cycloid-drive (Voith-Schneider) tractor tugs and Z-drive reverse tractor drive.

Working in partnership with Seaways Global, training courses can include:

  • Module 1 – ASD/ATD Tug Handling
  • Module 2 – Undertaking Harbour Towage
  • Module 3 – Active Escort & Dynamic Ship Assist
  • Pilot Azimuth Propulsion course
  • Effective Use of Tugs for Marine Pilots


The state-of-the-art simulator set up includes:

  • 360° vision via 44 LED screens
  • 31 computers
  • Rolls Royce controls and electronics
  • ASD/ATD/CTS/VSP controls
  • Genuine Damen hardware winch controls


Working closely in partnership with Wartsila, hydrodynamic modelling accurately replicates the dynamic interaction between the ship and the tug, to further enhance the realism and user experience.

The MSA in Portsmouth already boasts a full 270-degree NACOS platinum bridge with integrated bridge wings, connected safety centre, engine simulation suite with its control room, main switch board, high voltage and 3x virtual machinery spaces.  See more here

The MSA in Dover provides delegates with more of the practical safety training, covering basic and advanced STCW courses, GWO, hands-on engineering, commercial fire fighting and development training. The facilities include a real-life environmental effects survival pool, fire training centre, a damage control module, lifeboat centre and workshops. See more here.