HELENA – A cave simulator came to Helena to give people the experience and knowledge of caving.
The simulator helps teach people how they can explore caves without causing too much damage.
Sensors embedded in the course tell you if you get too close to delicate features, that may be damaged if not properly approached.
Dave Jackson invented the simulator. He tells MTN he got the idea when he and his wife were doing a live training for a cave rescue.
You can visit Capital High School for a free cave simulation experience until the end of the week.
When Dave Jackson, owner and inventor of CaveSim, was asked about his inspiration he said “You know, we were just practicing for cave rescue. Why are we damaging the fragile beautiful formations? So, I went to MIT for electrical engineering and thought, hey I’m gonna take my engineering skill, combine it with this problem.”
Dave and his wife keep the Cave Sim up to state standards, so they are able to come and teach at schools.
They have reached 20,000 people.
The cave sim is available for all ages. Ava Kind says “When I tried to go in, I could almost not fit in the space. I squeezed down and went on my belly. It was fun.”
Knee pads and safety helmets are supplied.
The simulator is in town as part of the National Caving Convention.
Reporting by Mercedies Pruneda for MTN News