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Barco helps Vattenfall stay on the right track

The control room of this European mining group benefits from a Barco videowall.

Vattenfall Europe Mining, part of the Vattenfall Electricity Group, owns and operates five lignite mines close to the Group╒s lignite-fired power plants in eastern Germany. The company owns a 380km long rail network, which was built to transport lignite to its power plants: its rail transport activities are operated by the Zentraler Eisenbahnbetrieb (ZEB), which controls and monitors the tracks at a dedicated building in Schwarze Pumpe. With the requirement to monitor countless trains, 20 signal boxes, 340 sets of points and over 700 light signals, it was important to install a system that enabled rapid response to changing events. The control centre╒s first videowall was installed in 1996 – but, increasingly, software compatibility and spare parts availability meant that an upgrade was unavoidable. Moreover, Vattenfall wanted better ergonomics, including a higher-resolution and brighter display wall. Vattenfall Mining called in Barco for the total refurbishment of the control room. The circular form of the ZEB building and the pillars in the middle of the control room, for example, challenged the design team. The Barco wall now installed comprises an array of 2 x 11 70in cubes, and the customer is said to be delighted with their brightness, with the high contrast and with the wide viewing angles – all improving ergonomics, reducing operator fatigue and boosting productivity and morale. To ensure wall uniformity, the OV-715 projection module incorporates Barco’s Sense6 sensor technology that continuously monitors and adjusts luminance and colour characteristics to ensure optimum viewing.