Acoustics in the Control Centre: No Room for Error
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The history of a control centre has proven to be crucial for many events. Whether it’s a computer data centre or an emergency response call centre, control rooms are places where every second count. As such, they need to be flawlessly designed and executed to allow professionals to do their jobs.
Dannis Lo is one of the people who help make that happen. He’s worked for more than a decade to provide acoustic solutions in control room environments. The stakes are high, but he enjoys the challenge.
“The environment is very serious and any noise disturbance would be a disaster,” Dannis says. “Every little alarm signals a different kind of threat that control center needs to be notified about. To be able to hear them the whole environment must be in control.”
Operators must also be able to differentiate between the types of sounds and alarms in the room to know whether something is a disaster or not. Dannis helps ensure this is possible by setting the frequencies for each alarm appropriately so the operators can be trained on which is which.
Moving From Afterthought to Forefront
Even though hearing alarms and other signals is essential in a control room environment, Dannis says acoustics are often considered as an afterthought when they are being designed. He counts this as one of the most frustrating parts of his job. It is mindset he hopes to change.
Dannis studied robotics and worked on video wall display systems before settling in acoustic design. He’s also worked in the area of ergonomics. Control room operators often sit at their desks for long periods of time and need well-designed workstations to support them.
The best environments happen when sound, lighting, and other design elements are planned simultaneously. Moving forward, Dannis hopes to continue educating his clients about how important this cohesion is to the finished control centre product.
“The biggest challenge I face is getting clients to understand how ergonomics, acoustics and lighting come together in the control room,” Dannis says. “It’s more than just how something looks.”
If you are looking to do a control centre and would like some help with acoustic treatment. Do not hesitate to contact us here.