Like the design of almost all man-machine systems, the key in control center design is to understand the functional requirements of the system prior to creation of the physical layout. Too often the first step in control center design is to start sketching out what rooms will look like. Without understanding the requirements for the building, this will likely result in a sub-optimal design.
The last step in the process should be the physical layout of the building and rooms for, without first defining the people who will be in the rooms and how the rooms will be used, a layout that satisfies those requirements will strictly be the result of luck.
Beville Engineering, Inc., has assisted in the design of control centers for BP, Chevron, Citgo, ConocoPhillips, and Shell, among others. Our approach focuses on the human aspects of the center, concentrating on the following to drive the layout of the control room:
Beville offers a free copy of our manual that discusses control center layout and design. Here is a brief snippet:
The main part of the control center is the control room, which itself is dominated by the individual operating consoles. Poor workstation arrangement is a major source of dissatisfaction with new control centers. The irony is that, often, the workstations are exactly what was asked for by the operators and approved by them. It is here that the adage of 'give them what they need, not what they want' becomes paramount, because what is asked for is often at odds with what is needed."
For more information, email us for a copy of our Control Center Design Manual or contact us at 937-434-1093.
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The dates for this year's Fall meeting for the Center for Operator Performance will be announced soon. For more information, please contact Lisa Via. Guests are always welcome!
The 2017 Spring meeting for the Center for Operator Performance was held April 3-5, 2017 in Lake Charles, LA. Please contact Lisa Via for further details.
David Strobhar's book, "Human Factors in Process Plant Operation," is now available in both hardcover and Kindle e-book.
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