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Baker Hughes

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The campus of Houston-based oil services company, Baker Hughes, includes the new Western Hemisphere Education Center, a cross-training facility for employees working in all aspects of Baker Hughes' business. The center primarily serves employees working in North America and Latin America, but welcomes employees working in Europe, Africa, Russia Caspian, Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions as well.

Attracting and retaining the brightest engineers is key for Baker Hughes, and it relies on the education center to help in that effort. New and continuing employees receive extensive education in the center's classrooms and laboratories, all of which are equipped with the latest technology. That technology commitment extends to the main lobby of the center where a combination of digital displays from Planar are deployed to further educate and inform employees, with the specific goal of building loyalty to Baker Hughes and inspiring them toward long-term careers with the firm.

"We have chosen to install some of Planar's newest and most sophisticated video displays to present information that complements what students are receiving in their classes and labs," says Randy Cosby, Information Technology Project Manager for Baker Hughes. "They interact with these displays – directly and indirectly – in the lobby, before, between and after classes – and in the process they learn more about the company, get more excited about it, and become even more invested in it. Thus, the Planar displays are among our most important assets."

Planar Mosaic is a cost-effective, flexible solution

Occupying a prominent position on an end wall of the lobby is a Planar® Mosaic™ Architectural Video Wall, the only video wall of its kind in the industry today. Planar Mosaic was specifically developed to give architects, interior designers and audio-visual integrators a truly unique video wall solution for their clients. Planar Mosaic is family of three different sizes of LCD video display tiles – two rectangles and one square – that can be mounted in any position relative to each other, and individually at almost any angle. In close collaboration with Baker Hughes, system integrator LD Systems and digital signage software provider, YCD Multimedia, recommended an array of the 22-inch square tile (AD-22 Salvador), the 46-inch rectangle tile (AD-46 Pablo), and the 55-inch rectangle tile (AD-55 Vincent), as well as YCD's C-nario Digital Signage Suite for content management and delivery. The array consists of 24 Planar Mosaic displays installed geometrically, with some tiles immediately adjacent to each other on the same plane, and others partially stacked outwardly, creating an almost three-dimensional presentation. This unique array shows a combination of digital signage and Baker Hughes-specific messaging, including historic video footage, company timelines and graphics and photos pertaining to the company and the oil services industry.

"The effect of this presentation is powerful," says Kevin Broussard, Sales Engineer for LD Systems. "On one hand you see this unusual display pattern that doesn't resemble the standard 16:9 video wall. But then you see that the information on it flows across and fills the entire array, with every piece of the content continually being scaled to fit the tile on which it appears.

"No other video wall is capable of this kind of presentation, and the uniqueness of it explains why it makes such a strong and lasting impression on viewers, and is so effective in supporting the company's messaging, branding and educational efforts," says Lou Carulli, Marketing Manager at YCD Multimedia, the digital signage solution company based in New York City.

In addition to providing exceptional design flexibility, Planar Mosaic delivers impressive cost-of-ownership features as well. Notable among these are its ease of installation (displays mount on push-in/out snap catches and auto-alignment posts); cabling options (single or multiple power/content daisy chains); off -board design (remote location of power supply to reduce heat); and content capability (accepting up to 4K or 3840 x 2160 resolution).

Clarity Matrix MultiTouch table encourages exploration

The display strategy for the lobby also called for a platform that would encourage and enable students to explore more of what is presented on the Planar Mosaic video wall. For this, Planar's Clarity Matrix™ MultiTouch LCD Video Wall solution was specified for a 16-foot long interactive touch table. The Clarity Matrix MultiTouch displays employ a protective glass surface, Planar's ERO™ (Extended Ruggedness and Optics) option that adds durability while providing a highly responsive surface on which users can input commands for content navigation and exploration. The 55-inch Clarity Matrix MultiTouch displays (LX55HD-L-ERO) seamlessly show the full Baker Hughes story and world events that have shaped the oil and gas industry. When the timeline is disengaged, the table becomes an engineering design table showing the interworking pieces of many of Baker Hughes' technologies, thereby providing another learning instrument within the center.

Other features come into play to make this History Table an effective communications and learning tool. Most importantly, its displays provide up to 32 simultaneous touch points – with pinpoint accuracy – giving multiple users the ability to interact with the table without affecting each other, and responsiveness that provides an exceptional touch experience at the same time.

Further, the History Table displays sit just 3.7 mm apart from each other, providing a virtually seamless electronic canvas. The high quality of video, photographic and textual content results from Clarity Matrix MultiTouch's brightness (800 nits), native resolution (1920 x 1080), contrast ratio (3500:1), and backlight sensing (automatic). "These features are important to our History Table which utilizes more than 250 video clips, hundreds of touch-triggered images, and a moving timeline to convey the evolution of the oil services industry and Baker's role in it," Randy Cosby says. "With Clarity Matrix MultiTouch delivering stunning content on a beautiful, responsive touch surface, almost anyone standing at the History Table is bound to be interested in exploring all the information we have to offer."

"Between Planar Mosaic and Clarity Matrix MultiTouch, we now have display technology that really helps define our company and makes our employees proud to be part of it. With these technologies, in this space, they can see that Baker Hughes is a step ahead of other companies in how it presents itself, and the value it places on advanced technology to develop its workforce and create differentiation in our challenging but highly competitive marketplace," he adds.