The technology in control rooms is always changing. To those outside the world of mission critical, it might seem like a static environment, consisting of rows of operators looking at large display walls.
However, in actuality the control room environment is continually changing. While some of the core components have remained consistent, the cutting edge equipment and methodologies necessary to run these spaces is always evolving.
Here are three major trends in control room technology today.
1. Interconnected technologies and IoT incorporated into system design.
Control rooms have more data points to pull from than ever before. From AI to behavioral data from the Internet of Behavior (IoB) to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), the access to real-time information is at an all time high – and only growing.
The IoB and IIoT have grown across multiple sectors including utilities, network operations centers, and security operation centers, allowing organizations to make use of even more real-time data. Harnessing these vast streams of real-time information enables operators to make decisions quickly and efficiently. These interconnected technologies make it easier for control room environments such as NOCs and SOCs to remotely monitor and manage their data and assets and respond to critical events. However, these expanded sources of data can present challenges as well, such as how to manage and distribute information from different source types.
An experienced integrator can assist you in overcoming these challenges. While designing the video wall system for your operations center, integrators like Constant Technologies can choose the best components such as processors to be able to support the sources you plan to use.
The rapid proliferation of these interconnected technologies has also emphasized the rapid development occurring within the field of control room technology. Design for these mission critical spaces needs to be dynamic; while the room itself is a long-term investment that needs to operate reliably, it also needs the versatility to shift along with the ever-changing landscape of technology.
2. Collaboration-ready features for flexible workflows
The control room of the 2020s is becoming a flexible environment with an emphasis on collaboration. The last few years have introduced a number of challenges resulting in changes to the workplace. While the main work in a control room happens in the physical, brick and mortar space, there is an increase in the need to accommodate occasional remote workers. Using technology with the capability to support remote operators alongside the operators within the space greatly increases your potential for productivity within a flexible workflow. Situational management regardless of location is an important technology trend within control rooms.
From remote workers to collaboration with other control rooms at separate sites, the demand for collaboration regardless of distance has increased.Effective and secure collaboration technology is more complex than it may seem,especially in mission critical environments. An integrator can also help you determine what features you will need in technology solutions to achieve your collaborative, multi-site goals.
The collaborative technology we integrate at Constant has multi-site capabilities with robust options for content sharing so operators in different regions can join forces to collaborate on the same real-time information. For our clients with operations spread out over multiple locations, this is absolutely essential.
3. LED video walls grow in popularity and use cases
Both LED and LCD video walls are great choices for data visualization in 24/7 environments like control rooms. While LCD walls have classically been the most popular choice, advances in LED technology have helped LED video walls catch up in the mission critical market.
Depending on the pixel pitch, LED walls may be better suited to larger rooms where operators will have a greater viewing distance. LED video walls for mission critical use can have a smaller pixel pitch and function well in a variety of room sizes, but it’s also important to keep in mind that the lower the pixel pitch, the higher the resolution – and thus the higher the cost.
When it comes to cohesive display, an LED video wall is the only type of display to offer a truly seamless viewing experience. It may be the better choice if you need to extend a visual across the entire video wall. However, if your content will have multiple applications where a perfectly seamless display isn’t as important, LCD is a good choice with many ultra-narrow bezel options available.
While LED video walls are on the rise in control rooms and come highly recommended by Constant, it’s important to choose the technology that works best for your space. Working with an integrator like Constant will help you determine whether LED or LCD will best fit your goals.
Creating a control room with Constant
Working with an industry specific partner is key to creating a successful control room. An integrator attuned to the specific needs of 24/7 will help you balance all the technology trends and considerations to create a system perfectly tailored to your unique use case.
Constant has over three decades of experience implementing video wall systems and console furniture in mission critical spaces. Our client list speaks for itself: we have worked with firms including CVSHealth, Akamai Technologies, Carnival Cruise, Facebook, Lockheed Martin, and more as well as with government agencies such as the Department of Defense, United States Coast Guard and Air Force.
With a project as important as a mission critical control room, you need an integrator you can trust to help you make the right choices and determine which trends will fit your goals. Constant has a depth of knowledge unmatched in the industry and offers a wealth of experience as well as custom design services and long-term service contracts, and we are dedicated to ensuring your mission critical space operates at peak performance.
If you’d like to learn more about visualization technology for your control room, contact us today.
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Constant Technologies, Inc. provides AV integration for 24/7 video walls and custom operation center furniture. With 30+years experience we can work with sensitive environments in the public and private sectors. Constant designs and installs projects of all scopes and sizes around in the world. We also offer long-term service and support. We create solutions with the highest levels of security, aesthetics and functionality in mind.