Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

The design of consoles for the operation of an annealing line

Appraisal of existing situation involved interviewing of 62 cabin operators and analysing 8 control cabins constructed within the last 2 years. The aspects studied were:
cabin appearance;
working posture;
control panels;
screens;
physical environment;
social environment.

For circulating information 2 different approaches were adopted. The first involved feedback from parties involved in the technical implementation of aspects of the project and the second involved setting up of a working party bringing together production, maintenance, design, methods, medicine, ergonomics and safety.

Proposals were drawn up and discussed for locating the cabins. The 'in' cabin was positioned for monitoring the welding operation and the 'out' cabin gave a direct view of the side trimmers.

Full scale mock ups of 2 workstations ('in' and 'out') were constructed based on plans drawn up by the design office.
3 mock ups were presented to operators. The excellent start up of the mixed continuous annealing process was due to operator training and the mock ups made the presentation of the functioning of the line more visual and congenial: they were a major asset in training. Nuisance caused by light sources and the problem of lighting was addressed by recommending specific lux valves for set areas and the installation of spotlights and recessed lighting where appropriate.

Specification of video equipment and its location were analysed so as to permit operators to control and monitor the entire plant from their cabins. 9 video screens were to be installed in the 'in' cabin and 27 in the 'out' cabin.

The layout of the quality control workstation was designed for the quality control operator with the job of inspecting products leaving the line. Operator satisfaction was monitored after 10 to 12 months of operation. Around 90% of operators were interviewed with the aid of a questionnaire.

The executive summaries in English, and the final reports in Community languages, are available on request to:

Community Ergonomics Action
Bureau of Information and Coordination
PO Box 237
L-2012 Luxembourg.

Reported by

Sollac Florange
57191 Florange
France
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