In industrial control rooms around the world, operators are being asked to make faster and better decisions based on ever increasing process data. Fatigue from long shifts, constant distractions and stressful work situations make their task more arduous. In addition, teams are expected to bring their knowledge and expertise together to improve operational effectiveness and achieve business goals.
How do we make industrial automation teams’ lives easier so that they can make smarter decisions and improve business results? Honeywell posed this question to its researchers and designers as part of its Control Room of the Future program. This program is an ongoing multi-phase effort to increase situational awareness, improve operator effectiveness, and provide faster response to changing conditions. What followed was nearly a year of studying control rooms around the world, observing operator behavior and collecting insights on HMIs in different scenarios such as process startup, abnormal modes of operation, plant trips, and when multiple operators use stations.
Enhance Operator Effectiveness using Advanced Display Technology
The insights from observations and feedback gathered during this exercise led to the design of the Experion® Orion Console. It provides a large, flexible, ultra-high definition display that provides clear status assessments of process operations at a glance for better and more informed management. Operating limits and targets are directly integrated into the overview displays, allowing operators to run the process closer to boundaries, and therefore, more profitably.
The console incorporates advanced alarm management, pan-and-zoom capabilities, and improved ergonomics to prevent fatigue. The Experion Orion Console also has a mobile tablet that makes operations staff more versatile in terms of where and how they interact with the process.
Improve Collaboration across the Organization using a Common View
The Control Room of the Future program also directly influenced the final design of the Experion Collaboration Station. It brings together specialists from disparate locations and different disciplines, and provides them with a common view of the appropriate control system and business data to support process decision-making.
Experion Collaboration Station utilizes a large-screen multi-touch interface; intuitive navigation means no training is needed. It is an everyday tool that can be used to increase operational efficiency for troubleshooting, operational meetings, and engineering and business support.
Businesses can seamlessly integrate the Experion Collaboration Station with their existing knowledge and control system infrastructure for use in several scenarios, including:
A single plant,
A multi-site operation with a centralized control room, or
For remote support from central engineering.