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Home > Resources > Documents and Literature > Case Studies > Antwerpse Water Werken
Antwerpse Water Werken
Black Box systems control the AWW process control servers

AWW is one of the biggest producers of drinking-water in the Benelux. The company produces and transports more than 150 million m3 (150 billion litres) drinking water each year. 110 Million m3 of this volume goes to the residents and industry in the Antwerp region and 40 million m3 goes to other Flemish drinking-water companies. 

The situation
AWW has several drinking-water production facilities all over the county of Antwerp. Their Southern production facilities at Walem & Notmeir consist of several control centers, production installations and office buildings around vast water basins.

With the renewal of their server park, AWW also wanted to centralize two control centers in a new building (two kilometers away) at the other end of the water basins. B
ut they wanted to keep a means of controlling the servers from the initial locations.

The solution
Black Box implemented a KVM and audio matrix system allowing the controllers to switch between all of the 24 critical process servers. The system was build up around the Black Box ServSwitch Octet KVM switch.

An important issue in the set-up was that the controllers needed to see and hear permanently visual and audio-alarms coming from the servers.

24 Separate video extensions were made using Black Box KVM Extenders and all 24 audio channels were mixed and transported from the server to the control room. To allow the process control supervisor to take control of the servers in case of an emergency, Black Box had to overcome a 2-km distance between the officice buildings at one side and the new control & server rooms at the other side of the basins.

Therefore Black Box installed a fibre optic KVM extender allowing the supervisor to take control of all servers at the remote control centre without loss of video quality. In case of emergencies , another option is to access all process control servers over the LAN or WAN network of AWW. A ServSwitch Wizard IP conencted to the ServSwitch Octet System allows KVM access over AWW's IP network.

Delivery and installation
Black Box delivered and installed all necessary UTP and ServSwitch cabling and all active components. The Black Box Project Supervisor also offered a brief users and system administrator training, in order to give the controllers a quick start with the new system.

Mr. Patrick Catthoor, Proces Control Manager at AWW about Black Box:
"We have had an old ServSwitch Wizard system since a while and it has operated without problems. Nevertheless, the large number of new servers and the relocation of our control room to a new location at our site, made it necessary to search for a new KVM switching system.

During the presale meetings, we made clear what our needs were and Black Box came up with an integrated system that gets the job done. In terms of installation and technical support, we were pleased to experience the high level of commitment and technical skills of the engineers responsible for putting together and testing the system.

Although they had to work under difficult conditions, the engineers managed to deliver a working system within the agreed timing and without interrupting the continuity of our productions operations".

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