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By GCN Staff

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1940s motion simulator rehabbed for tech testing at sea

The Navy is repurposing a piece of training equipment from World War II and converting it into a facility for testing and simulating how radar and other tactical communication systems would operate at sea. 

The 96,000 pound “motion table” platform, rechristened the Ship Motion System (SMS), was originally used in the 1940s to simulate ship motion for training machine gun operators for action at sea.

Now the Naval Research Lab and the Office of Naval Research are mounting an effort to restore the system to test how radar, tactical electronic warfare, communications, optical sciences and remote sensing would operate with rolling and pitching on the deck of a Navy ship maneuvering at sea.

To use the SMS with today’s high precision systems, NRL will upgrade its control and monitoring systems. The foundation and two main decks will be reused. The hardware will be replaced with state-of-the-art equipment including motion control and monitoring, according to a Navy notice.

NRL engineers Richard Perlut and Chuck Hilterbrick are leading the effort to refurbish the system at the NRL Chesapeake Bay Detachment, on the shore of the Chesapeake in Calvert County, Md. 

The NRL uses the site for research in radar, electronic warfare, optical devices, materials, communications and fire research. It says the facility is ideal for the SMS project, as well as for experiments involving simulating targets of aircraft and ships. 

Posted by GCN Staff on Jan 17, 2014 at 8:55 AM


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