MONTREAL, October 2, 2012 – L-3 MAPPS announced today that it has won an order to supply a human factors simulator to the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) located in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The INL is operated for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) by Battelle Energy Alliance. The project is effective immediately, and the simulator is scheduled to be delivered to INL in the fourth quarter of this year.
“This is our first project for INL, and we look forward to making a solid contribution to this prestigious lab,” said Michael Chatlani, vice president of marketing & sales for L-3 MAPPS Power Systems and Simulation. “It is rewarding that customers like INL recognize the flexibility and fidelity of our technology and are using our simulators for ‘beyond training’ applications.”
“The INL is developing the state-of-the-art Human System Simulation Laboratory (HSSL), a key resource for testing emerging technologies for their application in nuclear power plant control rooms,” said Dr. Ronald L. Boring, human factors principal scientist at INL. “At the heart of the HSSL is the L-3 MAPPS control room simulator, which can be used to develop and test the implementation of newer digital control room systems. Having the HSSL is a significant advancement that greatly enhances the DOE’s ability to support research on control room modernization.”
The INL is working with numerous U.S. nuclear utilities to perform research related to extending the life of U.S. nuclear power plants through digital control room upgrades focused on human factors. The vision is to upgrade analog-based control rooms to digital-based control rooms, considering plant operation from a human factors perspective. To enable INL staff to design, develop and test digital prototype replacement human-machine interface displays, the INL will use nuclear power plant full-scale simulators with digital control room mimics of existing analog instrumentation and controls to accurately replicate the control room layout.
The INL is currently conducting research to support the upgrade of the main control room at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS), a two-reactor plant operated by Southern California Edison Company. The existing SONGS simulator software, already using L-3 MAPPS’ platform and models, will be complemented by L-3 MAPPS’ Orchid® Touch Interface solution to provide an accurate representation of the control room environment using touch-screen technology to emulate the physical hard panels. In addition, L-3’s Orchid Sound System will be included to provide realistic control room alarm sounds. The fully integrated simulator’s emulated control room will then be modified by INL to develop prototype control room variations. The prototypes will be evaluated using operator-in-the-loop testing, and basic operator performance principles will be disseminated to the industry. Utilities will then work with their plant vendors to apply research-derived principles as design recommendations for their specific needs.
With the Orchid Touch Interface solution, released in 2011, high-fidelity panel graphics are displayed on large touch-screen monitors with 1080p full HD resolution. Three monitors are mounted on each frame, known as a bay. The order includes 15 Orchid Touch Interface bays. The top monitor of each three-monitor bay articulates, allowing passage through a standard door frame. Each bay is mounted on swivel casters for easy maneuvering from one room to another. Orchid Touch Interface’s touch-screen interface allows users to operate the panel graphics in the same way the actual plant would be operated and provides a life-like response. Additional Orchid software tools and training are also being provided by L-3 MAPPS to facilitate the INL’s research.
In operation since 1949, INL is a science-based, applied engineering national laboratory dedicated to supporting the U.S. DOE’s missions in nuclear and energy research, science and national defense. For many years, INL was the site of the largest concentration of nuclear reactors in the world. In the last 30 years, the laboratory’s mission has expanded into such areas as biotechnology and energy and materials research.
The Battelle Energy Alliance is wholly owned and led by global non-profit science and technology enterprise Battelle and consists of several team members, including BWX Technologies, Inc., Washington Group International, the Electric Power Research Institute, and MIT and other nuclear engineering universities. In 2004, the U.S. Department of Energy selected Battelle Energy Alliance to operate the Idaho National Laboratory under a 10-year management and operations contract valued at approximately $4.8 billion and involving some 3,000 employees.
L-3 MAPPS, a division of L-3 Marine & Power Systems, has nearly 30 years of experience in pioneering technological advances in the marine automation field and nearly 40 years of experience in delivering high-fidelity power plant simulation to leading utilities worldwide. In addition, the company has more than four decades of expertise in supplying plant computer systems for Canadian heavy water reactors. L-3 MAPPS also provides targeted controls and simulation solutions to the space sector. To learn more about L-3 MAPPS, please visit the company’s website at www.L-3com.com/MAPPS.
Comprising 25 operating companies, L-3 Marine & Power Systems (L-3 M&PS) is a worldwide leader in maritime automation and control, navigation, communications, dynamic positioning, and power distribution and conditioning for the U.S. Navy, allied foreign navies and commercial customers worldwide. L-3 M&PS also produces full-fidelity simulators for increased operator proficiency, resulting in safe operations for leading utilities and ship operators worldwide. With over 80 locations in 20 countries, L-3 M&PS is a cohesive, global partner with extensive capabilities and a proven track record in delivering the highest level of technology, service and integration. To learn more about L-3 Marine & Power Systems, please visit the company’s website at www.L-3com.com/MPS.
Headquartered in New York City, L-3 employs approximately 51,000 people worldwide and is a prime contractor in C3ISR (Command, Control, Communications, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) systems, aircraft modernization and maintenance, and national security solutions. L-3 is also a leading provider of a broad range of electronic systems used on military and commercial platforms. To learn more about L-3, please visit the company’s website at www.L-3com.com.
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Source: L-3 MAPPS