Touch screen Information Display system for Sky Sports

This year, The Ashes are being held in England. The series is running from the 10th July to the 25th August, and matches are being played at Trent Bridge, Lord’s Old Trafford, the Riverside Ground and The Oval. The Ashes is a huge event, especially when you consider how much media coverage it receives. In addition to all the cricket players, support staff and managers involved, there are whole teams of TV production and technical staff who help to make the event what it is. However, this year Sky needed to find an outdoor touch screen information display system, so their presenters could digitally critique the matches from the ground itself

Armagard were very pleased to be involved in this process. They were asked by Sky Sports to provide a custom touch screen enclosure for their cricket commentators to use during match analysis view it here. The two organisations worked very closely together to create a custom touch screen information display system that would meet Sky Sports’ needs perfectly.

What was the brief?

The brief that was given by Sky Sports was twofold. Firstly, they needed a high functioning piece of equipment that looked professional enough to be used on screen and broadcast to over nine million viewers. Secondly, they needed the system to be hardwearing and able to stand up to the demands of long term use in an outdoor environment.

The nature of the media industry means that their equipment is transported regularly. Because of this, it was vital for Armagard to provide Sky Sports with a custom enclosure that would be able to endure this constant transportation.

It was also necessary for the screen to meet all safety requirements. The screen was very large, and it needed to have a secure mounting system that was easy to set up in each new location.

What other considerations were there?

One of the things that makes Armagard touch screen information display systems stand out is the attention they pay to environmental factors. The screens and enclosures that are supplied by the company are expected to perform in very different environments, and it’s always important to make sure they’re completely suitable for them.

The Skycart is used to analyse winning cricket plays and strategies Image from Flickr (6tee-zeven)

The Skycart is used to analyse winning cricket plays and strategies
Image from Flickr (6tee-zeven)

In the case of Sky Sports, Armagard knew they needed to ensure the screen would be able to keep to temperature and not overheat. Television studios and summertime broadcasting can be very warm locations, and so this was a fairly big concern. It was also important that the ambient noise from the screen was as low as possible, so as not to cause a disturbance during broadcasts.

An air conditioning unit was added to the enclosure in order to keep it cool. The unit is programmed to use this system to keep itself to a safe temperature. However, it was also fitted with a kill switch. This means that the air conditioning system can be manually turned off, even if the screen is above its programmed ideal temperature. When this switch is used, it instantly stops any noise given off by the screen.

The enclosure was also fitted with a secondary ventilation system that continues to work even when the kill switch has been used. These fans blow outside air into the unit to make sure it doesn’t overheat. Along with a small layer of insulation, this secondary ventilation system helps the screen to stay cool when the air conditioning unit needs to be switched off.

Why did Sky Sports choose Armagard?

Sky Sports chose Armagard primarily because they had very specific needs, and Armagard were the best at offering a custom solution to meet them. They also knew Armagard would be prepared to work closely with them to make sure the project was as successful as possible.

Another real benefit for Sky Sports was that Armagard have had success with previous custom projects. In 2012 they worked with Euro football to supply 485 units and enclosures to be installed throughout five new football stadiums in Poland and the Ukraine. They also provided a unique custom enclosure for the UK’s first urban cable car transport system, in association with London’s Emirates Airline.

What did the touch screen information display system look like?

It’s a touch screen enclosure with a width of seventy two inches. It is also fitted with anti-reflective glass with touch foil that was supplied by Sky Sports themselves. This feature ensures that the enclosure will look good on camera, and will not produce any unsightly reflections.

The custom information touch screen display system will be used throughout the 2013 Ashes series. It’s designed to be hard wearing and long lasting, and it will continue to be used at future Sky events.

This post was written by Katie M Anderson

Katie M Anderson

Katie M Anderson is a writer, blogger and consultant based in York, UK. Katie M Anderson Google+

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