Sydac specialises in rail simulation and has been at the forefront of the commercial application of simulation technologies since it was formed in 1988. Sydac ventured into the rail market in the mid 1990’s and has since grown to be the second largest supplier in the world.
Sydac has offices in Adelaide (South Australia) and Derby (England), and over 130 full time employees dedicated to the rail driving simulation activities, with in house capabilities in software development, 3D computer graphics, electrical and mechanical engineering and project management. From Computer Based Training & Assessment modules that can be delivered on laptops or tablet computers, through to full cab simulators using the very latest in display technology and Computer Generated Imagery, Sydac product portfolio covers the entire range of rail simulation tools. Sydac also undertakes to renovate existing simulators (supplied by Sydac or 3rd parties) in response to problems of obsolescence or new training and assessment requirements. Each project completed by Sydac is a custom adaptation of a standard and proven solution to specific customer needs. Sydac invested early in a core technology environment that allows today to offer particular solutions at a reduced budget while taking advantage of many years of rail simulation developments for a large variety of customers and applications.
Highly realistic virtual reality environments
Many safety and cost benefits are obtained by training drivers under simulated conditions, but to be effective the simulation must be convincingly realistic. Sydac is a world leader in the field of Computer Generated Imagery for rail simulation and the modelling of the visual environment is based on more than 20 years of experience of the Sydac graphical engineers in the field. The vision engine used to edit the Computer Generated Images is critical as well to the overall quality of the visual environment and Sydac uses the commercially available Unigine engine, which is a AAA game engine successfully used worldwide in creation of highly realistic interactive virtual reality environments, industrial design visualizations, virtual reality systems, scientific research, etc.
Track record of developing innovative technology in rail simulation
Sydac has also an excellent track record of developing innovative technology in rail simulation. For instance Sydac is the only rail simulator supplier capable of providing a proven and patented Live3DTM head- tracking vision system. Live3DTM allows the vision of the trainee to be warped in real time according to the actual position of the trainee’s head. The virtual camera used to compute the Computer Generated Images moves depending on the direction of gaze of the trainee to allow him to view objects outside its normal field of view. Sydac also differentiated itself in passenger simulation in the United Kingdom in 2006 by developing the industry's best simulation in passenger behaviour for London Underground. Recent investments have led to the development Scenario Creator, which is a user-friendly CBTA editing tool designed to make the development of situation based training and assessment modules easy and intuitive. It consists of a virtual world in which assets with assigned actions can easily be inserted to form a mini movie or scenario illustrating a particular educational outcome with a high degree of realism and a high level of interactivity.
Maintenance of simulators in operation
Sydac stands by all of its simulation solutions for their whole cycle life. Rather than seeing delivery as the end of a procurement contract, Sydac works with its customers to provide ongoing maintenance and support tailored to their specific needs. Sydac simulators are specifically designed to minimise the effort required for maintenance and support. The system architecture avoids the use of proprietary hardware or software, unlike the offerings of many of its competitors, therefore ensuring ongoing support without the risk of obsolescence. The use of Common-Off-The-Shelf components has the following benefits:
- Maintenance and support activities can be mainly undertaken by IT technicians.
- Components are supplied by global suppliers and readily available worldwide.
- New graphics technology can quickly and inexpensively be integrated in the simulator system without the need to replace the simulator.
Sydac and its parent company Knorr-Bremse represent a supplier with significant resources. Sydac was purchased by Knorr-Bremse in 2009 and is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Knorr-Bremse Australia Pty Ltd. We are now combining our simulation expertise with Knorr-Bremse's road and rail vehicle simulation divisions to become world number one in Land Transport Simulation.