Virtual “Situation Room” for Industry
We are not talking about just large Operational Centers but as pointed out over the last couple of weeks these are coming into play more and more especially in Mining, Upstream, and refining, but realistically it is just a part of the new “Virtual Situation Room” that enables the “Flexible Operational Team ”.
The key aspects of a “Virtual Situation Room”:
· Operational Activities are Transformational across the "day in the life" of the worker, who does not need to be tied to a particular location to execution that activity
· Collaboration and Interaction is Natural across the Operational Team
· Awareness and context is native so situational awareness and decisions can be made dramatically faster, workers are not monitoring systems, they brought aware of growing situations.
· Team work is natural, learning is natural across the team
· Embedded operational practices enable Operational Innovation as a part of the operational culture.
· Alignment of the different levels of loops in the industrial landscape are aligned
· Unification/ alignment through federation is core across plant systems, and multi plant
The concept of the “Virtual Situation Room” can be seen in the diagram, but is based on unified industrial landscape which we use the Enterprise Control platform as the foundation to align the different levels of industrial operations, as well as put things in context of the workers activities in a timely manner. This enables a harmony of automatic loops at the control, operations layer and at the business layer, but with the critical human intervention and decision in a timely manner. We all heard of “Lights out Manufacturing” the concept of no or minimal people on a site and the plant can run, this has been proven to be not practical as an “agile business” requires business and operational decisions to be made based on the different vectors effecting the business today. Such as price, energy, safety, environment, and supply with minimal inventory requiring a very reactive system, the human brain is the best device for making these more complex decisions.
As you can see in the diagram you have workers in and outside the plant who work through the appropriate device to access the information, in context and understand the required actions or best practices available to make the action in a timely manner. They are able to interact, drill in, access experience, and interact, and play out into the future understands the effect of a decision.
This concept while looking new terms is the essence of the Enterprise Control, and what I have been discussing for the last 3 months, you should have realised that the empowerment of the operational workers (no matter role or situation) to make timely decisions is the key.
To achieve this we need “loosely coupled and tightly aligned” plants, applications, people, systems, assets. This will require systems like ArchestrA a “peer to peer” model and architecture, to evolve even further to an even more federating system. But it will require a broader thinking in implementations as well.
There are many aspects to explore within the alignment of plants, key is we not saying a MEGA system, we a federation of many systems into aligned operational system that is manageable and sustainable. Next couple of weeks I want start discussing MEGA vs federated, and what happened to interoperability with the enterprise, as this area too has evolved in thinking a long way in the last 4 years.