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National Science Centre Case Study

Enhancing the sharing of knowledge and ideas

Location

York

Sector

Education

Project Value

£320K

Programme

12 weeks

The Brief

The National Science Learning Centre network provides courses that enable science teachers and technicians to enhance their professional skills and knowledge and to address contemporary scientific ideas, techniques and teaching approaches.
Online technology enables the centre and its partner schools and colleges to share resources and participate in collaborative events. The centre needed a sophisticated audio visual solution to facilitate, complement and enhance its educational offering, that was easy for resident and visiting staff to use, and that would be reliable, robust and durable. Viewpoint won the contract to deliver the centre’s vision.

The Solution

Lecture Theatre Area

The area comprised a number of elements that would be able to be operated as discrete spaces, whilst at other times, would be able to be combined to provide a large single space accommodating up to 290 persons (or 280 + wheelchairs). The criteria for this area included:

  • Control of all source and environment equipment from touch panel housed at bespoke lectern unit
  • Interactive panel for display of annotation onto twin large screens
  • Appropriate boundary and radio microphone systems
  • Automatic/semi-automatic control of sound & lighting levels
  • Capability to transmit lectures to 15 remote locations and stream to web in ‘real time’
  • Capability to access and project data and video images onto the screens independently from sources including a networked PC, laptop, multi-standard SVHS VCR, CD/DVD player/writer, a document camera/visualiser and electronic microscope. Display of simultaneous images from a number of sources.
Video conferencing suite

Appropriate technology was installed to enable up to 30 members of the centre to join a virtual meeting with other colleagues at up to 15 remote locations, using a twin screen system for people and data content.

In addition, facilities to record, archive, playback & stream data were included.

Exhibition Area

Provision of flat screen panels configured to articulate and convey the nature and purpose of the National Centre via matrix switching from eight. source devices.

Cafeteria

Flat screen panels and projection system to allow for occasional use for conferencing, exhibition and after dinner presentations.

Meeting room/offices

Dedicated and laptop PCs with interactive touch panels to allow electronic whiteboard/ annotation sessions via ceiling-mounted projection systems.

Teaching Room Seminar Room/ICT Room/Laboratories

Interactive panel/tablet in each room and associated equipment to enable tutors to write notes with an electronic stylus and access and project data and video images from a variety of sources including video microscopes and document cameras.

Public Address and Hearing Enhancement Systems

Design, supply and installation of the infrastructure and equipment for a public address system and hearing enhancement systems to function effectively in key areas around the centre.