Distributed control system for control rooms are no longer an afterthought given the importance of operator performance; the operators’ ability to identify and accurately respond to what is heard and seen is critical to protection of lives and property.
The Importance of Ergonomics and Video Monitoring Tools in the Control Room
The security control room operator cannot be expected to remain alert and capable of reacting to events within facilities that are ill equipped for the job. Often operators are forced to spend long hours sitting at outdated consoles or office furniture. Modern control room furniture is designed for specialized equipment storage and made of materials that are intended to hold up for years in a 7/24 environment. The typical control room workstation is equipped with IT equipment and armed with monitoring software displayed on the latest high definition video screens. Today’s large screen technology is most effective as a matrix of displays forming a video wall. A video wall controller is used to accept a variety of signal images that are then displayed on the screens. The operator can simply size the images and place them anywhere on the screens.
The most important factor is always the human element. The control room operator that sits for long periods viewing large video screens should be afforded the opportunity to leave the workstation for short periods of time. When that’s not possible, then a sit to stand workstation should be considered.
Technical furniture manufacturers design customized systems by evaluating information gained from customer feedback and site visits. Unlike many foreign furniture makers, American technical furniture manufacturers offer robust, heavy duty products that accommodate a variety of IT and communications equipment.
An experienced and talented design team play an important role in developing a customized technical furniture and video wall system. The team designs each and every part of the console so that there is enough space for the operator to sit comfortably with all tools within easy reach. Ergonomics play a critical part of the design process. There should be adequate space and accessibility to wiring, communication devices, adjustable computer displays and control system for the video wall. Integrated furniture systems incorporate custom-made racks for larger or deeper components. These racks allow for easy management of cabling and vertical power strips without restricting airflow to the electronic components. Manufacturers are also conducting research to develop future solutions for systems that will comprise fiber-optic cabling.
The video wall technical designer develops the appropriate size video wall for the room size and ceiling height. The conforming video wall controller is configured to accept signals from DVRs, TV, individual computers and computer networks. The video wall displays are either mounted on the wall or reside in a freestanding cabinet with all electronics installed in the cabinet. The video wall is controlled from the operator’s desktop by either keyboard and mouse, or programmed touch panel controller.
A comprehensive analysis is done to select the furniture equipment and audiovisual technology for the security control room. Plan drawings, 3D illustrations are created for client understanding and approval. These drawings are ultimately used for manufacturing and technology integration.
Innovative design and quality workmanship are critical to the performance of security control room furniture and monitoring systems. The right distributed control system means a control room with effective interaction between people and the monitoring tools that they use on a continual basis. Look for a US company with many years’ experience at manufacturing and project management. Choosing experts like Americon that have all services “under one roof” makes the technical furniture and audiovisual design and implementation process easy for the client.