Phil Ambrose is on to something.
If we give him our support, someday the kind of high tech 3-D video interface modules in this picture might be integrated with his realistic approach to the hardware used in training. This type of wearable technology could pave the way for augmented reality and allow us to realize the much sought after integration between technology and physiology necessary for more effective training.
Interactive modules of the kind Phil is designing to help prepare responders for hazardous gas confrontations are long overdue in our community and we should all be grateful for Phil's inventiveness and persistence in bringing his methods and equipment to market. He's taken the lead on hazardous gas response training and I'm glad of it.
But his technology is applicable to more than just hazardous gas detection training.
When I asked Phil about whether his approach could be put to use to train people to use high-powered infrared temp guns as an early warning system, he told me, "The short answer is yes. Using the housing and likely a beam to aim. The internals could be replaced with our internals and run on the platform. The long answer is yes too, just requires some work. The initial plan of Hazsim would be to be adaptable to many technologies." That's the kind of innovative thinking we need in the emergency response community.
I also asked Phil what's new and important at HazSim. Here's what he said:
"HazSim is listed on the responder knowledge base and has AEL numbers for grant purchase.
Feedback has been excellent and common reactions have cited not only the realism but the fact that the instructor has so many options during a drill. HazSim is proud to be providing our system to increasing numbers of public agencies in both police and fire hazmat. We are in the process of finishing an agreement with one of the top HazMat training facilities in the world whose instructors were impressed by the HazSim system.
HazSim is looking for a first responder HazMat agency or HazMat training group in the Chicago area interested in an evaluation studying the increase in learning through hands on interactive training. The preferred group should have at least 90 students going through a HazMat course which involves drill scenario and meter use. The training group would be part of a paper intended for publication and have the opportunity to use the HazSim Pro Trainer system. For details about this study, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 323-9HazSim."