Hands-Free Mobility in Operations

Historically, operations personnel in coal and gas power plants have relied on paper and pen to record field readings and make notes regarding equipment condition. These manual forms and handwritten notes are then either filed for record, transcribed to an enterprise software program, or referenced when creating requests for maintenance. As technology advances, many utilities have begun the transition to mobile pads and tablets with task-specific applications that are linked to the relevant enterprise software.

As technology continues to advance, it is anticipated that the natural evolution will be from handheld pads and tablets to head-worn, hands-free devices. However, use of this technology in a plant setting raises many questions related to situational awareness, ergonomic impact, and advantages or disadvantages as compared with a traditional pad or tablet.

This research will seek to demonstrate use of a commercially available head-worn, hands-free device by field operators in a working power plant.

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