Category: Switch room


High-availability control room supervises processes of oil storage in caverns

Nord-West Kavernengesellschaft mbH (NWKG) is one of the major cavern operators in Europe. The company’s largest cavern site is located near the port city of Wilhelmshaven in Lower Saxony. The administrative headquarters and a high-availability control room, whose employees do their part to ensure Germany’s strategic oil reserve, are also stationed there. For the technical and ergonomic equipment of this control room, NWKG has been relying on the know-how of the JST – Jungmann Systemtechnik® control room specialists for more than a decade.

Hundreds of meters below the earth’s surface (underground), up to 11.5 million cubic meters of crude oil can be stored in deep-lying salt deposits in artificially created caverns on the periphery of Wilhelmshaven. This is the way these huge underground reservoirs work: Oil is lighter than water. When oil is pumped into the salt cavern, it displaces the water that fills the cavern. If, on the other hand, water is pumped in, the oil floats to the top and is thus forced out of the cavern.

After almost twelve years, cooperation with JST again

In order to permanently monitor the processes of oil storage and retrieval and also its emplacement, the operators of the new control room have a 24/7 view not only of camera images, but also of pressure sensors, pumps and drives. “We run the cavern operation with this highly available control room,” summarizes Lars Janßen, head of electrical engineering at NWKG. The engineer worked with the Jungmann team more than a decade ago to implement a control room. Today, almost twelve years later, he has used the new construction of the NWKG administration building to benefit again from the know-how of the JST experts when planning a new control room.

Operators consciously involved in the decision

“Even the workshop in the control room simulator was a perfect introduction,” reports Lars Janßen. “We were able to see and touch everything on site, operate the technology and directly imagine the benefits the new installation will bring. It helped a lot that the operators accompanied us on this visit and that they were deliberately included in the decision-making process.”

Interactive experience in the new control room: Zoom, rotate, nighttime view and change of perspective – here you can experience control room concepts in interactive 360 degree visualisations! How does the new control room look? How can the operator consoles be optimally positioned? How big should the monitor wall be? With professional 3D studies and virtual tours – here at NWKG in Wilhelmshaven – these and many other questions can be answered at an early stage of the project. Light influences, colours, spatial conditions – there are almost no limits to the design possibilities. Go on a three-dimensional journey of discovery now!

In case of critical malfunctions, red flashing light pulses

In fact, NWKG employees were spontaneously enthusiastic about the possibilities realized with JST components in the new control room: ergonomic furniture with the Stratos control room console, the OPAL X11® acoustic ceiling sail, and extensive furnishings with customized cabinet and sideboard solutions – all equipped with the AlarmLight, which generates attention with red-flashing light pulses in the event of critical fault messages. In addition, a large screen wall whose high-resolution displays are perfect for cross-screen BigPicture presentations, for example, thanks to ultra-narrow frames.

MultiConsoling® performs all requirements

With the implementation of MultiConsoling® technology, several requirements could be performed at the same time: Thanks to an intuitive user interface, effortless handling of the entire control room operation is now possible. With only one mouse and one keyboard per workstation, all systems can be used in a flexible manner. Project manager Lars Janßen particularly likes the so-called MouseHopping, with which the cursor slides directly from the workstation monitor to the displays of the video wall.

Virtual machines comfortably integrated

Even virtual machines could be easily integrated into the control room applications via MultiConsoling®. The GrabberVM® enables comfortable integration and establishes the connection to desired sessions.

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NWKG control room before and after renovation

Maximum availability as the top priority

Another requirement that JST performs with the new control room: Maximum availability is the top priority for the operation of the cavern facility near Wilhelmshaven. Lars Janßen: “We have set up highly available technology here. That is of great importance to us.” All systems were designed with full redundancy. Corresponding service level agreements and PSM (Proactive System Monitoring) provide additional security.

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