CADwalk, a new virtual reality based workspace design system from Control Room Solutions enables all project stakeholders to literally walk through a full-sized representation of a control room, and modify the layout to suit their specifications.
Control Room Solutions, a subsidiary of Jumbo Vision International Pty Ltd (JVI) is a market leader in consulting, design and realisation of high end command and control rooms for oil and gas, mining and public utility providers.
An ingenious fusion of high-tech 2D and 3D visualisation and control room design skills, the CADwalk has been implemented at JVI’s CAVE (Centre for Advanced Virtual Environments) in Adelaide. The CADwalk system employs 2D and 3D image projection and 3D Motion Capture cameras to create a full-scale concept layout of a workspace that closely mirrors the room’s actual physical characteristics, very similar to the Holodeck on Star Trek.
The result is a life-sized digital playground that gives stakeholders a fully immersive visual sense of the room as it will appear when completed. Project stakeholders including operators, architects, builders and engineers can walk their way through a full-sized representation of a control room and modify the room layout as they proceed, simply by adjusting the placement of passive tracking devices called ‘trees’, each of which has been assigned to an object.
Interactive software provides feedback and control over the layout in real time, with users simply having to physically move the tracking trees until they have achieved the desired output.
CADwalk has already been utilised in a live setting with promising results by its very first user worldwide, New Zealand’s national electricity power provider Transpower that recently completed a major control room design upgrade for their Wellington and Hamilton National Coordination Centre with the aid of the system. Conducted as a two-day workshop with operators who had flown out from New Zealand, the first hand visualisation of their desired design and workflow cut an estimated three months from the project design cycle, while, saving hundreds of emails and costly meetings.
In addition to high value control rooms, which remain their target focus, JVI plans to sell CADwalk as a service to other industries including interior home design, hospitals, and even bigger projects such as LNG plants, oil rigs, shipbuilding and general construction.