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Operations and Control Center Command Console Success

Eaton’s Profile command console provides new Operations and Control Center with ergonomic workstations that support the rigors of a 24 hour, 7 day a week facility.

The right workstation makes a big impact at a new Operation and Control Center (OCC)

OCC facility challenges

As an industry leader in Operations and Maintenance (O&M) services for renewable energy projects, EDF Renewable Services (EDF RS) is fully equipped to manage the day-to-day operations of their clients’ wind, solar and biomass projects. 

When it came to their move from a small facility in Minnesota to San Diego, they were challenged with creating a state-of-the-art 24/7/365 control room.  This required quality, functional stations that were flexible, modular and aesthetically appealing. 

Eaton’s Profile command console solution

Although the OCC team reviewed several potential solutions, they saw the value of the Eaton Profile solution for its modular, yet functional design for future expansion as well as its aesthetic appeal.

  • Flexibility and versatility for future reconfiguration and expansion
  • Ideal for flat panel display (FPD) accomodation
  • Configurable for either single or double-sided workstations

Profile’s core connector permits a variety of angled configurations from comfortable cockpit viewing of monitoring equipment to shared workstation platforms. Furthermore, the product provides electronic or manual height-adjustable work surfaces for sit-to-stand applications, as well as a superior power and cable management for easy service access.

I really saw the value in the Eaton product because of the modularity of it …  That was one of the biggest selling points for us. It allows us to make changes as we expand in the future, and we liked the way that we could combine stations.

– Bob Szymanski, Director of the OCC

The story begins...

Last year, as EDF RS prepared to relocate its OCC from a small Minnesota facility to its San Diego headquarters, the company had the opportunity to create a state-of-the-art control room from the ground up.

“There was just the shell of the building with no interior walls,” explains Bob Szymanski, director of the OCC. “We were able to design everything completely from scratch.”

When it came to selecting the console system that would serve as the operators’ workstations, Szymanski had several details in mind.

“The primary concern for me was to provide quality, functional stations for our operators,” he shares, adding that flexibility, modularity and aesthetic appeal were other important considerations.

“We also wanted something with a curvature,” Szymanski says, “because we have a large 55-foot curved front wall with twelve 80-inch monitors, we wanted to replicate that design feature throughout the room.”

Eaton to the rescue

Seamlessly addressing all of Szymanski’s prerequisites — and delivering some additional bonuses, as well — was the Eaton Profile Console System. Revolutionary in both design and construction, Profile offers an ergonomic solution within an ultra-durable steel frame that is ideal for a wide variety of work applications and environments. The product’s flexibility and versatility make it the perfect flat panel display (FPD) console, and its unique core design can be configured for either single or double-sided workstations.

Although Szymanski reviewed several potential solutions, “I really saw the value in the Eaton product because of the modularity of it,” he reveals. “That was one of the biggest selling points for us. It allows us to make changes as we expand in the future, and we liked the way that we could combine stations.”

“We have assurance that we can reconfigure and gain additional stations, just by changing the components,” he adds. “This is critical as we make facility investments for the long-term growth of our operations."

EDF RS opted to deploy nine Profile Command Consoles facing the video wall, and a tenth in the adjoining training room. Then, beginning in July, the company embarked on the arduous task of transitioning its Minnesota facility to the new San Diego OCC, a process that was carried out over a four-month period. 

“We built out all nine stations, even though we only needed six initially,” Szymanski says. “That way, we’d have everything in place for future growth.

”Adding to the consoles’ aesthetic appeal was EDF RS’s ability to select from a range of material and color options. “We were able to make it look very professional, yet functional,” Szymanski confirms. “We have a mix of side panels and table top surfaces. I think we ended up with a really sharp color combination.”

Beyond the visual score, the Profile Consoles also address important ergonomic issues. For instance, EDF RS opted to install electronic lifts for the back row of consoles to ease use for employees. Profile’s manual height-adjustable keyboard platforms and sit-to-stand height-adjustable workstations are available in multiple configurations, and single and dual lift platforms allow users to adjust their working postures to comply with the most current ergonomic recommendations.

“Our people love it and we show that off all the time,” Szymanski confirms.

In addition, EDF RS employees appreciate the consoles’ cable routing and power management options, as well as convenient rotary book shelves installed underneath the work surfaces.

Management and command center operators aren’t the only ones impressed by Eaton’s Profile Consoles. “Another advantage was our IT personnel loved the systems integration capabilities,” Szymanski says. “They could put client PCs right into the consoles, and it provided a very clean, functional installation.”

The solution also enabled the company to overcome a challenge it experienced within the Minnesota OCC, where monitors were stacked in a way that was not visually appealing. “The facility had some monitors stacked 3 x 4, and it just didn’t really look very good,” Szymanski recalls. “With this system, we could neatly integrate the monitors, giving it a very professional, clean look.”

Noting that EDF RS frequently hosts both existing clients and prospective customers for facility visits, Szymanski says he gets a kick out of unveiling the new OCC.

“We have a privacy screen in a separate conference room and when we lift it, we immediately get a lot of ‘Wow’s,’” he says. “The room shows itself really well. The layout of the workstations adds a lot to the look."

In addition to the numerous benefits afforded by the Profile system, Szymanski is quick to praise the Eaton sales team.

“They are a very responsive product group,” he reports. “They were very receptive and helpful, which factored into my decision. I felt I could work with the organization because they understood my needs as a customer very well."

EDF RS also turned to Eaton to help address other aspects of its project, including the installation of an airflow management solution. In a separate IT server room, the company deployed vertical containment walls, end-of-row doors and vertical blanking panels. Three Eaton transformers were also deployed.

A happy ending...

With the OCC completely up and running, EDF RS is reaping all of the rewards promised by the Eaton Profile Command Consoles.

“Because of the functionality and the system integration, it ended up being an excellent solution for us,” Szymanski sums up. “We’re very happy with it, and it adds a lot to the look of our facility. It provided a lot of flexibility for the look we wanted while also maintaining the functionality.”

Thanks to the customized look, feel, color and design of Eaton’s Profile solution, OCC was able to:

  • Achieve workspace functionality for its operators
  • Allow for flexibility as the company grows
  • Help protect its employees with the highly ergonomic work stations
  • Provide a visually appealing environment

Learn how the Eaton Profile Console System can help you

Eaton’s Profile Console System offers sit-to-stand workstation lifts for optimum operator comfort and ergonomics.