by Staff Writers
Dulles VA (SPX) Nov 16, 2011
Raytheon Technical Services Company LLC (RTSC) and Petrofac Training Services, a member of the Petrofac group, have entered into a strategic partnership to deliver water survival training to the global oil and gas industry. External customers can experience training at NASA's Johnson Space Center (JSC) underwater facility in Houston.
In 2010, NASA selected the Raytheon team to manage and operate the Neutral Buoyancy Lab (NBL) under the NBL/Space Vehicle Mockup Operations Contract and allowed Raytheon to use the facility for nongovernment purposes when it is not being used for NASA mission-related activities.
The partnership will fully utilize the resources of the NBL and combine the expertise and capability of Raytheon and Petrofac in training delivery and management, creating a center of excellence for survival training.
"The Raytheon team has managed NASA's NBL training facility since 2003, and has for more than 50 years provided high-consequence training solutions to NASA," said John Harris, RTSC president.
"Together, Raytheon and Petrofac will offer similar training solutions to the oil and gas industry customers, who also require a focus on safe operations and mission assurance."
The survival training program begins in December and will be delivered at the JSC facility, which until now has primarily supported astronauts' training. The program will provide trainees with one of the most realistic environments available anywhere in the world for learning critical aspects of water survival.
The 6.2 million gallon, 40-foot deep NBL pool was originally designed to support space-walk planning and training using full-scale mock-ups of the International Space Station and Space Shuttle. While the pool will continue to support NASA's space program, a grated floor will be installed in designated areas to support survival training activities.
The partnership will initially focus on delivering Helicopter Underwater Egress Training, Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training, and Further Offshore Emergency Training, three core survival courses delivered throughout the oil and gas industry worldwide.
The partnership will also expand into delivery of Emergency Response and Crisis Management training for the oil and gas and other industry sectors by using the NBL's on-site test control rooms.
"We are already seeing demand for survival and ERCM training outpace supply," said Paul Groves, managing director of Petrofac Training Services. "Through this partnership, we can support the growth of the oil and gas industry by combining the technical capability and industry best-practices of Raytheon, Petrofac and NASA to deliver world-class survival and safety training."
Raytheon Technical Services Co. of Dulles, Va., NASA's contractor for operations at the Sonny Carter Training Facility Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) near Johnson, has signed an agreement to partner with Petrofac Training Services in Houston.
Petrofac will use the NBL to provide survival training for offshore oil and gas workers. NASA will continue training International Space Station crews there for space walks. With the end of the Space Shuttle Program and the completion of space station assembly, the time required for NASA spacewalk training has decreased.
Oil field worker survival training is expected to begin in December. The NBL will provide trainees with one of the most realistic environments available to learn critical aspects of water survival.
The 202-foot-long, 102-foot-wide pool at the center of the NBL was designed to support spacewalk planning and training using full-scale mockups of the space shuttle and space station. While the 6.2 million-gallon, 40-foot-deep pool will continue to support NASA's activities, a transparent 12-foot faux floor will be installed in designated areas to support survival training.
In 2010, NASA selected the Raytheon team to manage and operate the facility under the NBL/Space Vehicle Mockup Operations Contract. NASA allowed Raytheon to use the facility when it is not being used for agency activities.
The partnership will efficiently use NBL resources while combining the expertise and capability of Raytheon and Petrofac to create a center of excellence for survival training.
The Raytheon team has managed operations at the facility since 2003. The partnership initially will focus on three core survival courses applicable to the worldwide oil and gas industry.
The core courses are helicopter underwater egress training; basic offshore safety induction and emergency training; and further offshore emergency training. The partnership also will expand into the delivery of emergency response and crisis management training for oil, gas and other industry sectors by using the NBL's on-site test control rooms.
The announcement highlights NASA's efforts to find new and innovative partnerships. By opening Johnson Space Center's facilities and resources for use by non-aerospace industries, NASA hopes to find areas of common interest where both parties can help each other foster new technologies that not only improve life here on Earth, but also pave the way for future human exploration in space.
The NBL is just one facility with the potential for use by outside industries with special needs for design, development, testing, operations or training, especially in extreme environments.
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Romanian accused of hacking NASA servers arrested
Bucharest (AFP) Nov 15, 2011
A 26-year-old Romanian accused of hacking several servers of the US space agency NASA costing it some 500,000 dollars has been arrested, prosecutors said Tuesday. "The suspect Robert Butyka is charged with illegally accessing several servers belonging to NASA on December 12, 2010, hereby violating security systems," prosecutors in charge of organized crime said in a press release. "By in ... read more
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