Jan. 27, 2022 - Barco's control room visualization and collaboration solutions are at the heart of the smart city. Our operator workstation and large-screen visualization solutions enable city authorities to manage information more efficiently and collaborate better between different city services.
By 2050, nearly 70% of the world's population is expected to live in cities. The development of larger urban areas and megacities will have a serious impact on our infrastructure: more traffic congestion, more energy consumption in combination with unpredictable renewable energy sources, and a bigger need for public safety.
By using the power of big data and the Internet of Things, city authorities hope to get more insights into the inner-city dynamics, and ultimately to improve the life of its citizens and working population. The challenge today exists in efficiently collecting, managing and visualizing that data, coming from a variety of city sensors and databases, so it can lead to more knowledge and better decision-making.
The control room: the backbone of the smart city
The control room acts as the framework of the city's smart infrastructure. As the city grows, so does the challenge of managing information efficiently.
Barco helps control room professionals to get the most out of the available information, to collaborate more efficiently between different city stakeholders and to achieve city-wide situational awareness. Barco's displays, media management and workflow solutions help them collect, view and share critical information, so they can resolve issues quicker.
Smart city control room professionals have 3 key challenges. Not only do they need to cope with an information overload, they also need to find ways to collaborate more efficiently, all the while keeping cybersecurity threats under control.
1. Managing the information overload
To control city movements and manage multiple city service operations, control room operators monitor an increasing variety of sources coming from the network of city sensors and databases. Event data coming from various applications and systems generate a constant flood of alerts, and operators are challenged to detect and analyze events and incidents in a timely way. This often leads to alert fatigue, slower decision-making and even to wrong decisions.
Barco offers smart city control room operators a personalized and ergonomic workspace that reduces stress levels, increases productivity and supports faster critical decision-making. By using a single keyboard and mouse to access all relevant information, even from disparate networks, Barco's OpSpace allows them to make better decisions and resolve incidents quicker.
2. Collaboration with different stakeholders
To improve service to their citizens and working population, smart cities focus on collaboration between different city services. Law enforcement, traffic management, waste management, public utilities, disaster management and environmental management all need to be attuned to each other.
The efficiency of a smart city therefore heavily relies on the interconnectivity of the control room network and on the smooth collaboration between city services on the one hand and between control room operators and field responders on the other hand. In this highly connected network of city services, it is critical to get the right information to the right people at the right time, whether they are located inside the physical control room or at one of the multiple remote locations.
Barco's networked visualization solutions allow control room professionals to monitor their content exactly when and where they need it. Content can be shared securely across the smart city network, from control room to breakout room, or even with remotes stakeholders through SecureStream. This improves collaboration and allows for the most efficient incident response.
3. Maintaining security of operations
As cities increasingly rely on the power of the cloud and the Internet of Things (IoT), they are facing enormous cybersecurity challenges. Authorities, utilities and even the city's healthcare facilities are all popular targets for cybercriminals.
The sophistication and frequency of cyber-attacks increases, so control rooms need to shift their focus from preventing incidents to identifying, managing and containing incidents, in order to minimize the impact to the organization.
Barco's networked visualization and media streaming solutions allow control room professionals to share content easily and securely inside the control the room and to external stakeholders. Barco's operator workstations provide secure access to hosts across multiple security domains and allow users to display and interact with information from isolated networks on the same pixel space. This way, they can maintain a higher level of security and prevent unauthorized access and data transfer.