The Southwestern Oregon Community College Board of Education approved Monday the bid of $51,000 for a Virtual Motion Welding Simulator (VRTEX 360) to be used in a new mobile training lab as part of the welding and metal fabrication program’s Community Based Job Training (CBJT) grant.
The mobile lab, a 36-foot fifth wheel currently under construction, will enable the college to provide training and demonstrations at any location throughout the college district.
Under the simulator’s linked welding hood, the trainee moves a similarly linked welding tool. Immediate feedback is given to the trainee on a computer monitor on a minimum of five variables as they realistically simulate the welding motion. This immediate feedback allows for instant review of techniques without the need for expensive welding gases, metal coupons and electricity that welding machines require.
In order to deliver the services of the mobile lab, the Board also approved the bid of $45,400 for a 2010 Ram 3500 SLT Crew 4x4 diesel truck to serve as the towing vehicle. The amount will be paid out of the grant and had been previously approved by the grant’s program manager.
Southwestern was awarded a $1,998,518 CBJT grant provided through the Department of Labor for advanced manufacturing programs in February 2009. The grant was requested with the intention of further developing and expanding workforce talent in welding, metals fabrication and design for the Rural Oregon South Coast region. Southwestern was the only college in Oregon to receive this grant. The grant runs through February 2012.