John Deere Simulators Give Customers Training in a Safe, Controlled Environment

Fri May 13, 2011 - National Edition

To help customers reduce traditional training costs and the need to use real equipment, John Deere has introduced two new operator training simulators for crawler dozer and backhoe operation along with new technology that enhances the virtual environment.

Deere now offers a line of five simulators, including previously introduced models for excavators, 4WD loaders and motorgraders.

“Customers told us they wanted a cost effective, safe and efficient way to get their operators familiar with machine controls in a risk-free environment,” said Mike Hoeg, senior instructional designer and developer of John Deere Construction & Forestry.

“We’ve responded with simulators that teach operator technique and safe operation in a controlled environment before they ever step into a real machine.”

Customer feedback also has led to new features making the training experience even more realistic and immersive. The new motion platform option lets operators feel the simulator react to the virtual job site terrain. An optional, inexpensive head- tracking device links the operator’s actual head movements to the in-simulation view for enhanced realism.

“Now the machine moves with the terrain you’re moving over, and the view changes as you look around the virtual job site,” Hoeg said.

“When you couple these new, exciting options with a focus on job site safety, the eight to 10 detailed and realistic lessons, and the ability to see how the operator’s performance affects the bottom line on a detailed score sheet, simulators offer the closest experience available to equipment operation,” Hoeg said.

“Customers can conduct training without machine fuel or maintenance costs for machines, or worries about weather. It’s truly an economical, easy solution,” he said.

John Deere simulators have become a popular training tool for unions, trade schools, colleges, large contractors, the military and any other groups that wish to train operators for safe, productive operation.

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