Consoles are used in various industrial process control systems where ever there is a human system interface like a power plant control room. The placement of various human system interface elements has to be done optimally considering the people who use these devices in order to ensure an appropriately designed work environment and comfort of the users to ensure an accident free environment. Design guidelines and design processes are the basis to fulfill the ergonomic expectations from the work environment. The approach to this study has been comprehensive integrating studies to generate pre-design data, the design-evaluation studies, discussions and final proposals.
Pre-design studies were carried out in Photogrammetric anthropometry to generate the necessary anthropometric data and develop the compatible physical design of the consoles. Placement of various display elements is of prime importance and the designed environment has to take in to consideration preference regards to information placement. Study investigating the preferences for height of the displayed information generated the necessary information placement limits. The pre-design studies carried out supported development of proposed models of the consoles which were developed and evaluated for reach and usage comfort. The face plane and inclined desk were evaluated for reach and various reach spaces were defined. Study to evaluate and understand posture and muscular phenomenon in sitting posture for the sit-down console was done by simulating on a specially designed rig in which the involved parameters like monitor height and inclination could be manipulated to understand muscular behaviour of involved muscles such as Neck Extensors and Erector Spinae, using electromyography and postural angles such Thoracic bending, Neck and Trunk inclination using photogrammetry.
The consolidated design investigation steps have led to a better understanding of the console design and thereby have led to recommend the reference design of standard sit-down and stand-up console to be used in Indian context. A design frame work is proposed that supports ergonomic console design and development.
IDC School of Design,