Barco was selected as key technology partner because they have the solution & expertise to deliver in mission critical environments.
Recently, they were faced with the task of upgrading one of their Control Room to meet their evolving needs. Like so many power company control rooms, they had a dozen monitors on their operator’s desk. This not only took up too much space now, they had little room to grow for future expansion. They wanted a solution that would provide all the access they currently had, but in a more compact ergonomic workspace that would allow them to expand. This solution had to be easy to use, ergonomic in design, and incorporate best-in-class security. No small order. They took their requirements to their integrator of choice, CCOMM – a highly successful Canadian technology integration company who specializes in the design and build of control rooms, collaboration suites, IP video distribution, and integrated audio-visual solutions - who then turned to a leader in Control Room solutions, Barco.
The marriage of Barco’s OpSpace operator solution with Barco’s CMS software, an advanced control room management suite, provided the ideal solution for this utility customer’s unique needs – ensuring they had to compromise on nothing. OpSpace creates a single workspace for viewing, monitoring, and interacting with multiple clients that reside on multiple networks. In this way, the operator is at the center of the information and has all data within easy reach.
In addition to OpSpace, there is an overview ribbon with 4 65” QHD monitors above the window that makes overview application easy to display. Those are powered by two NDN-210 Pro output nodes with Barco TFN/CMS media distribution platform. From a signal flow point of view, it uses the same applications/sources that are connected to the network encoders (NGS-D320 FLEX). Simply put, a connect and display anywhere solution, done with success.
After the control room renovation, they now have two operator desks – each with two QHD monitors and two dozen applications/sources connected and available – plus a third supervisor’s position with one QHD monitor. In addition, we installed an overview ribbon with four 65” monitors above the window that makes overview application easy to display. What was once crowded and complex is now streamlined, simple, and secure - with plenty of elbow room.
Focused on Security
Another key component for this solution – as it is with every control room –was ensuring security was airtight. This upgrade required stringent cyber security review of the system, drawing from NERC/CIP requirements, to minimize data and operational threats. Since OpSpace creates a blend of pixels from different sources and mixing sources of data inputs can bring in potential security threat, third party isolators were used to layer on top to minimize the security threat.
To maximize physical security, as well as maximize space in the physical Control Room, the OpSpace infrastructure was easily stored in a different location and locked away. This helps prevent unauthorized access as well as potential hacking/theft. The virtual display runs CMS that then connects to OpSpace using encoders and decoders from Barco as part of the solution. This was a big differentiator. As was the ability to have a desktop control mechanism that has access to all content in the same visualization layout as a videowall and yet doesn’t require a ton of additional cable to mount or add-on wiring. Clean. Secure. Reliable.
Tailored Solutions from Barco
Barco has a long-standing experience with Control Rooms in general and the Power and Utility industry. And while we bring all that experience to the table in helping create solutions for end user customers, each one is tailored and engineered to meet specific requirements. This customer needed easy and unlimited access in a compact and ergonomic workstation with absolute security. Barco’s products and expertise are exactly what they were looking for and the result was a big win for all involved.