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NORCAT virtual reality pre-operational circle check. (supplied)

NORCAT will be debuting new learning technologies in the Northern Ontario Mining Showcase at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention in Toronto this week.

The company announced Tuesday that it has partnered with Vale, one of the world’s largest mining companies with operations in Greater Sudbury, to develop and deploy an innovative blended learning program that will transform how the global mining industry trains and educates its workforce.

Officials with NORCAT say through the partnership the company is creating interactive and experiential technology training tools. It will allow for new methods of delivering equipment operator and maintenance training for enhanced safety, efficiency and productivity for mine training operations. These tools include virtual reality pre-operational circle check training tools and exercises for mine equipment, including forklifts and utility vehicles.

"Experiential learning technologies, including virtual reality, represent the future of training and engaged learning, and our work with leading mining companies has demonstrated that, when applied correctly, these integrated technologies create an immersive learning experience that drives meaningful learning outcomes and enhances knowledge retention," says Ed Wisniewski, NORCAT’s Director, Technology. "NORCAT’s portfolio of integrated learning technologies enables us to deliver engaging and meaningful content in an immersive experience for the global mining industry like no other in the world.

"Safety and operational excellence is a top priority for Vale, and we are pleased to announce the partnership with NORCAT to advance and augment our virtual reality training capabilities," says Chris Bamberger, Vale’s Manager of Learning and Development North Atlantic Operations. "We look forward to increased collaboration and innovation around this critical space to transform the future of work and learning in the global mining industry."