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Tanker, LNG Container Ship and Cruise Ship Manned Model Ship Handling Courses for Professional Mariners in St Pierre de Bressieux, France

port revel shiphandling

Located at St Pierre de Bressieux near Grenoble (France), Port Revel Training Center (Port Revel Shiphandling) offers manned model ship handling courses for merchant mariners in Tanker, LNG, and cruise ship model at Port Revel Lake. Port Revel is located on a man-made lake of about 13 acres that was remodeled in order to reproduce real sailing conditions. The courses help masters from the major oil companies to make the transition between ships and the VLCCs. Presently 80 to 90% of all the center's trainees are Marine pilots.

Manned Models training provides the most realistic simulation of ship handling in confined waters. The fleet consists of 11 scaled ship models and 5 radio-controlled tractor tugs. Most of them represent real ships with their corresponding characteristics. Given the various possibilities available for loading and modifying the ships, the fleet represents a total of more than 22 vessels allowing a variety of exercises for 8 to 10 participants working simultaneously.

Training on the scale models provides experience that could never be gained on real ships for the simple reason that neither ship-owners nor local authorities would allow such risks to be taken. The lake is fitted with wave, wind and current generators and complex port approach configurations.

port revel

Training Programs


Manned Model Programs

  • Ship Handling Course (5 days): This course was designed for pilots, captains and officers who have never been on manned models before.  It includes ship handling teaching and training. Each day of the week is devoted to a particular subject -  - study of turning in deep and shallow water, study of the role of the pivot point in ship maneuvers, berthing with or without current, maneuvering with anchors (dredging and mooring), and meeting and overtaking in a canal.
  • Advanced Ship Handling Course (5 days): For those who have already been on manned models, this course includes a lot of training aiming at enhancing their ability to anticipate emergencies. Participants may draw up their own program with the instructors in order to examine in greater detail some aspects of operations that are particular to their own pilotage district.
  • Pods and Emergency Ship Handling Course (5 days): This course is for those who wish to discover podded propulsion and associated mechanical failures. The course covers such operations as - docking and undocking with a current; crabbing, with pods and bow thruster; backing into a slip; maneuvering with a single pod (in the event of failure); and emergency stopping.
  • Q-Max Course (5 days): This course is focused on twin-screw LNG carriers and other large bulk carriers. The course includes emergencies with rudder and/or engine failures and work with escort tugs and anchors.
  • Cruise Course (5 days): Based on models with pod propulsion and twin screw inward/Becker flap rudder, this course is focused on cruise ships. Training with these two types of cruise ships in normal conditions or in emergencies is very interesting for master and pilot and will increase your safety at sea.
  • Fully Customized Ship Handling Course (5 days): A fully customized 5-days course can be organised, e.g. with more training with waves and berthing on our SBM/CPM and on our fixed offshore platform, using various kinds of tanker (we have 6 tankers ranging from 38,000 dwt up to 400,000 dwt with various loadings and three rudder types), more work with escort tugs and/or podded ships and/or CPP, or with container and/or LNG carriers, specific work on your local conditions, etc.
  • Emergencies Ship Handling Course (4 days): The course is dedicated to emergency ship handling with all failures available and the use of escort tugs. He is conducted for part of the time spent on the lake with remote controlled escort tugs (five tugs, all with at least 60 t bollard pull). Time is also devoted to use of anchors in emergency mode.
  • Pods Ship Handling Course (2.5 days): This course was introduced for pilots and podded ship masters. The course is focused on use of pods and includes exercises like - following an alignment ahead and astern, entering and backing into a slip, passing through a lock with bow thruster and one pod failing, use of anchors with one pod failing, and crash stop with and without use of anchors.
  • Green Ship Handling Course: Port Revel has equipped two of its eleven ships with sensors for measuring total energy consumption during a given ship handling operation. Trainees are thus challenged to carry out the operation in question with a target level of consumption (and hence atmospheric emissions) that is fixed in advance by the Center's instructors, who have themselves already faced the same challenge.

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