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NMCI Services,
National Maritime College of Ireland,
Co. Cork,

Telephone: 021-4335609
Fax: 021-4335696

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NMCI Services

We have added extra #STCW refresher dates to our January schedule. Short route STCW #refresher #training dates have been added to the week commencing Jan 18th.… Long Route STCW refresher training dates added from Jan 20-23rd.…


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Result! GAC-sponsored Crystal Palace promoted to Premier League

Posted: May 29, 2013


“The cheers could be heard all the way from London to Athens, Dubai, Singapore, Cape Town, Sydney and throughout the GAC world last night when our sponsored team Crystal Palace beat Watford and won promotion to the Premier League.


It’s at times like this that we really feel the appeal of ‘The Beautiful Game’ and enormous pride that we have been the Club’s main sponsor since 2004.

For news of Crystal Palace and other teams and athletes we support, as well as the latest updates from the GAC Group, check out our pages on Facebook ( and LinkedIn (”

GTSS combines the NMCI’s state-of-the-art facilities with GAC’s global reach and 50 years of shipping experience.

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TRACE certification sends strong message for GAC Egypt

Posted: March 27, 2013

 TRACE certification sends strong message for GAC Egypt

Underlines commitment to ethical business practice

Gulf Agency Company (Egypt) Ltd is the latest GAC company to become a member of anti-bribery body TRACE International, underlining its strong commitment to ethical corporate conduct.

“TRACE International, Inc. is a non-profit group that offers practical and cost-effective anti-bribery compliance solutions for multinational companies which are required to demonstrate transparent business practices regardless of pressure, local law or custom.

GAC Egypt’s certification comes after a stringent due diligence review of every aspect of its operations and key managers, highlighting the company as a beacon of compliance and stability.

The GAC Egypt Management Team with their TRACE certificate

Managing Director Capt. Mohammed Badawi (pictured, holding the certificate) says: “TRACE certification is yet another recognition of our integrity, a reflection of our transparency as well as an endorsement to our Code of Ethics.”

About GAC Group

GAC is a global provider of integrated shipping, logistics and marine services. Emphasising world-class performance, a long-term approach, innovation, ethics and a strong human touch, GAC delivers a flexible and value-adding portfolio to help customers achieve their strategic goals.

Established since 1956, GAC employs over 10,000 people in more than 300 offices worldwide.

Sign up for GAC’s free HOT PORT NEWS email for daily updates from ports around the world and RED HOT PORT NEWS for free SMS alerts of breaking news at

Follow GAC Group on Facebook at and LinkedIn at

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GAC World Interview with Joanne Kelleher Marketing Executive of GTSS

Posted: December 21, 2011

GAC Training and Service Solutions (GTSS) Marketing Executive Joanne Kelleher was interviewed for the January 2012 edition of GAC World. In the interview Mrs Kelleher outlines the importance of training even in economically difficult times and talks about the ever growing presence of women in the maritime industry.

Click here to view interview.

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Posted: October 19, 2011

GAC Training and Service Solutions (GTSS) launches high value bunker course to increase understanding and improve efficiencies

GAC Training and Service Solutions (GTSS), one of the world’s leading training providers for seafarers and shore-based shipping personnel, today announced the launch of its inaugural “Complete Guide to Bunkering” course, to be held from 22 to 24 November at the $100 million National Maritime Training College of Ireland in Cork.

Led by leading bunker market experts Robin Meech and Chris Fisher, this new course is designed to reflect the latest trends facing the bunker suppliers, traders and brokers, as well as bunker fuel purchasers, class societies, surveyors and other bunkering stakeholders. The course reflects the new importance of bunker fuel as the major cost for the shipping industry – with fuel costs having risen 600% over the past 10 years and representing over 70% of most shipping companies’ costs.

The new course has been designed by bunker industry expert Meech, managing director of Marine and Energy Consulting and co-author of “Outlook for Bunker Fuel Oil and Heavy Fuel Oil to 2030” published in July 2011. Focusing heavily on delivering value for money, the course content encompasses the full breadth of the bunker industry, including: history and background, the latest regulations (SOx, NOx and Greenhouse Gases), abatement and energy efficiency, demand and pricing, LNG (LNG training)and other alternative fuels, the latest fuels standards (ISO 8217:2010), sampling and surveys, metering, price risk management and an introduction to the legal framework and contracts.

Robin Meech explained:

“The modern bunker market is a constantly changing operating environment – increasing prices, environmental regulation, record prices, poor credit, growing demand for metering, the potential of LNG powered vessels; all of which directly influences the decisions taken by those operating across the full spectrum of the bunker supply chain. This course reflects the bunker market as it is today and GTSS should be commended for looking at the bunker industry and allowing it to use its state-of-the-art training facilities.

“Given the sheer scale of relative cost for bunker fuel in the modern shipping market, it is not only the buyer and seller of bunkers that play a crucial role in maximising profitability. Expanding the depth of people’s knowledge right across the value chain, including board members, can help provide them with a better understanding of the bigger picture, as well as the consequences of their actions, enabling them to make more informed decisions with confidence. Ultimately this improves the overall efficiency of end-to-end operations and allows organisations to benefit from the associated commercial savings.”

The course has been created paying close attention to the current trends and likely future of the bunker market. It combines elements of strategic long-term thinking with technical and regulatory requirements, as well as the day-to-day realities of bunker sales, procurement and delivery.

Conor Mowlds, Director, GTSS said:

“With bunker prices at an all time high the bunker purchaser has a more influential role than ever before. The viability of many a company is resting on the successful purchase of bunkers at the right price, and when done effectively this can give an organisation a competitive edge. In today’s operating environment, increased understanding can indeed provide competitive advantage, which is why GTSS has designed the best value for money course in the industry.”

The first GTSS ‘Complete Guide to Bunkering’ course will run from 22-24 November at the National Maritime College of Ireland in Cork – a 45 minute plane journey from London’s Heathrow, and serviced by flights from Geneva, Lisbon, Amsterdam and other international destinations.  The course costs Euro 1,645 per person and includes three nights accommodation, breakfast, lunch and daily refreshments, a welcome drinks reception and a networking meal on the final evening. Other evening activities can be arranged for attendees. An early-bird rate of Euro 1,495 is available until 28th October. For more information please visit

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Simulation advances lead to better vessel manoeuvring

Posted: August 23, 2011

lngtrainingSuppliers deliver new systems to colleges, academies and ship operators as guidelines on ship-to-ship transfers and vessel handling are set to increase demand for innovative bridge simulators

Colleges with 360 degree simulators are the main beneficiaries when ship managers follow guidance on training for vessel handling and ship-to-ship transfers (STS). The guidance regarding STS training comes from the UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), which has called for practical courses to help mitigate the safety and environmental risks arising from these operations.

Training centres have invested heavily in new simulators from suppliers including Kongsberg Maritime, Transas and Ari Simulators in response to the rising demand for training on modern bridge equipment. The National Maritime College of Ireland (NMCI) in Cork claims to have the world’s largest bridge simulator suite, supplied by Kongsberg Maritime and utilised by GAC Training and Service Solutions (GTSS) for its STS courses.

According to Clive Hotham, who lectures for GTSS on its simulator-based STS operations course, training requirements for these activities will become mandatory in the future.

“Any situation in which ships are in close proximity to each other or moving at speed poses very real dangers, including vessel damage, injuries to the crew and environmental implications,” he says. “This makes ship-handling experience critical, especially in delicate operations such as mooring or STS. At the moment, specialist training for STS professionals is voluntary. But the MCA has started issuing guidance on the subject and it never seems long before guidance becomes law. I have no doubt that it will become mandatory that the master, at least, has been on some sort of training course.”

There are advantages with using 360 degree screens as they add a high level of reality to the training. “Simulator training enables a progression of challenging scenarios and such a flexible and varied range of conditions that we can clearly see if our trainees are operating in a safe manner,” explains Mr Hotham. “It also allows us to train them to recognise when they should make the decision to abort the operation because of poor weather or other problems.

“Once an exercise has begun, participants tend to forget it’s a simulation. This is particularly useful when we throw things at them that we hope would never happen, like engine breakdown or steering failure. They experience the full stress of the situation in a safe environment, allowing us to train them to react appropriately.”

NMCI’s simulator also has the capacity to link two bridges together, as in real world ship-handling scenarios. “We have eight or nine ships in our electronic tanker fleet, and with just a phone call we can obtain more from Kongsberg Maritime’s database,” adds Mr Hotham. “For clients running a lot of courses it’s even possible to train in simulations of their own real-world ships. In a simulator you can change the time, weather and seasons as you wish – summer to winter, day to night, sunny to thundery.”

In another deal, Kongsberg Maritime will supply eight Polaris ship’s bridge simulators to academy Vlaamse Dienst Voor Arbeidsbemiddeling en Beroepsopleiding (VDAB) in Zeebrugge, Belgium. The VDAB facilities will help train crew for local shipowners, including two of the world’s major dredging companies, Jan De Nul and DEME.

The Polaris simulators will allow students to train in a large number of sailing areas and over a broad range of disciplines including navigation, manoeuvring and ship handling, plus search and rescue operations. Starting in August, Kongsberg is due to deliver two Polaris DNV B bridges with 225 degree visual systems and six Polaris special task stations, each equipped with a 30 degree visual system. The installation will also include an instructor station and a secondary instructor or debriefing station.

Kongsberg Maritime recently helped shipowner Ezra Holdings open a suite of simulators in the EMAS Academy, the first of their kind in Singapore. The new facility includes a full-mission offshore vessel simulator with fore and aft bridges and a Kongsberg K-Poss dynamic positioning simulator. There are also two anchor handling simulators and one for training engineroom personnel.

Transas Marine will be delivering a full mission simulator to Kimberley TAFE Broome Maritime in Western Australia. The simulator will be used to train pilots and tug masters, who will operate in a new port development. The centre’s range of services will be expanded further through a research project. For this, Transas will develop rotor tug ship models and will integrate real drop-in panel and steering controls from Schottel for advanced training of masters and integration with pilots in live situations. The Transas simulator will have a number of replaceable panels including a set of controls for anchor handling vessel manoeuvring and all associated offshore training. The facility will have a configurable design for the main bridge console, so trainees will be able to use real steering controls from Sperry Marine and Raytheon Anschütz integrated bridges.

The system is based on a Navi-Trainer Professional 5000 ship handling simulator. The visualisation system will have the highest level of realism, featuring wind-generated sea state and variable swell models. There will be accurate vessel and wave interaction, full scene and environment reflection, and three dimensional bow waves and propeller wash. New grounding, synchronous rolling, broaching and other modelling features will be included.

Ari Simulation has supplied simulators for Indian shipowner Great Offshore for offshore vessel and crane handling. The facility can recreate the bridges found on anchor handlers and platform supply vessels operated by Great Offshore. It can be integrated with Poscon controls and dynamic positioning. Great Offshore will use the training centre to simulate ship handling, crane operations, heavy lifting, towing and navigation. The main simulator has nine plasma displays providing a 270 degree field of view. The aft bridge simulator has ship handling and engineering controls.

German company Safebridge has signed an agreement with Sperry Marine to provide online training for users of its VisionMaster FT ship navigation systems. Safebridge’s software allows students to train on all the watch modes found on the Sperry Marine bridge products supplied to the vessels they work on. It enables seafarers to access hands-on training at any time, so long as they have internet access. Users are taken step by step through a number of modules, replicating the use of the actual equipment, and are shown how to use each feature in various simulated scenarios.

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