Case Study

QinetiQ: Moving naval submarine training on to firmer ground

The Challenge

As part of their new strategy, the Royal Navy and their defence technology partner QinetiQ wanted to move more sea training to shore. Submariner training presented a particular challenge, as it currently takes place onboard real submarines or in physical simulators, requiring travel to a specific site and only allowing a small number of trainees at a time. This makes the training process time-consuming and expensive.

It was clear they needed a technology-based solution to cover a very broad range of role-specific skills training. The technology also had to facilitate team training for those who had reached a certain level of competence, enabling them to practise working together effectively and safely.

Shell logo


Farnborough, Hampshire
“Our clients want to train people for anytime, anywhere, and the Immerse platform enables you to do that. It allows people to enter into a virtual environment as a team and train together wherever they are located at whatever time”
Helen Dudfield, Chief Scientist for Training & Human Performance, QinetiQ,

What we did

We developed a unique multi-user VR environment simulating a real submarine control room, complete with working displays, operators and multiple interaction points. Helping trainees learn and practise skills in a realistic environment, with the instructor appearing as an additional head and pair of hands to point or guide them. All participants are also linked by voice as well as visually, enhancing the interactive realism and learning potential.

What this means

  • Less reliance on in-demand equipment and less time spent at sea
  • Dangerous scenarios can be repeatedly rehearsed safely
  • Encourages smooth and efficient teamwork
  • Uses relatively inexpensive VR equipment for significant cost savings
  • Scalable and highly flexible for both new and experienced submariners
  • Trainers can access progress reports and insightful analytics from recorded data in each training session

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