classic | mobile
 

Search...

SA Instrumentation & Control Buyers' Guide

Technews Industry Guide - IIoT

Technews Industry Guide - Maintenance, Reliability & Asset Optimisation

 

Art and technology come together
March 2017, System Integration & Control Systems Design


The 70-year history of the Bregenz Festival in Austria has been accompanied by a series of technical masterpieces that make watching opera on Lake Constance a memorable experience. From July to August, the floating stage on Lake Constance hosts spectacular opera performances that attract 7000 spectators each night with their combination of music, singing, state-of-the-art stage technology and effective lighting against a spectacular natural backdrop. For Giacomo Puccini’s ‘Turandot’, which takes place in China, stage designer Marco Arturo Marelli built a ‘Chinese Wall’ on the lake utilising complex stage machinery controlled by Beckhoff technology.

The tradition of the Bregenz Festival goes back to 1946, when the event started with a performance of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s musical comedy ‘Bastian and Bastienne’ on two gravel barges anchored in the harbour. The space on the barges soon became too small, and the organisers decided to build a real stage on the lake, which became larger and more sophisticated as the years went by. Every two years, when the repertoire changes, the stage is completely torn down and rebuilt. This also applies to the 119 wood and steel poles that are driven up to 6 metres deep into the lake bed and carry the huge weight of the performance space. This enables the organisers to be sure that the floating stage will hold up against the forces of wind, water and flooding.

The backdrop that Marco Arturo Marelli designed for ‘Turandot’ consists of a 72 metre long wall that snakes across the stage like a giant dragon. A sophisticated structure of steel, concrete and wood holds the 29 000 pieces in place. “Since the stage weighs 335 metric tons, the structural requirements are exceptionally demanding,” says controls technician Stefan Frischke. “After all, the backdrop must be able to withstand extreme weather conditions such as thunderstorms.” When the action calls for it, the wall must also be able to collapse very effectively, which happens at the beginning of the opera when more than 200 terracotta warriors become visible behind it, appearing to be marching from the heavens into the lake.

The actual centrepiece of the floating stage is an extendable rotating portion with two additional performance areas below it. When its hinged floor opens up, it features a video wall on its underside for special visual effects using image projection.

PC-based control platform masters complex stage technology

The floating stage is also highly unique with regard to its control technology, as Frischke knows only too well: “In STB Steuerungstechnik Beck, we have found a great partner to help implement our stage control requirements, which are often very unusual.”

For Turandot, the Austrian systems integrator developed a Beckhoff-based control solution that includes the following functions:

• Control the rotating stage, which is 16 metres across, via a wire drive with various positions and end stops.

• Control various doors and hatches with position monitoring functionality.

• Collapse the wall in a controlled manner.

• Control the hydraulics for the rotating stage cover, which also functions as a video wall.

• Raise and submerge the hidden podium under the rotating stage.

A unique special effect of the stage design is a seemingly autonomous boat that circles the stage. It may look magical, but does in fact require complex technology: The boat is mounted on a scissor lift that moves on a rail system below the lake’s surface. The scissor lift alone weighs 5 tons, and the boat adds another 2,5 tons.

The stage controller consists of a panel PC as the central platform along with distributed EtherCAT I/O terminals. “Since the floating stage involves some highly unusual requirements, the flexibility of Beckhoff control technology was of critical importance for us,” says Alfred Beck, general manager of STB Steuerungstechnik. “It allows us to make changes and additions at any time and at little cost. Adding more terminals to the system is all it takes if we want to add more functionality. Another decisive factor during the selection process was the compact form factor of the Beckhoff control solution because space is always limited on a performance stage.”

For more information contact Kenneth McPherson, Beckhoff Automation, +27 (0)11 795 2898, kennethm@beckhoff.com, www.beckhoff.co.za


Credit(s)
Supplied By: Beckhoff Automation
Tel: +27 11 795 2898
Fax: 086 603 6868
Email: info@beckhoff.co.za
www: www.beckhoff.co.za
Share via email     Share via LinkedIn   Print this page

Further reading:

  • Afrilek offers continual functional and technical support
    March 2017, Afrilek Automation, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    Founded in 2005 by managing director Grant Douglas, Afrilek provides complete automation and electrical solutions, as well as service and support for its clients’ production facilities. The company, headquartered ...
  • Integrated control for power plants
    March 2017, Yokogawa South Africa, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    In the era of convergence, is it time for a paradigm shift?
  • The Smart Factory is here
    March 2017, RET Automation Controls, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    Smart factories are an important part of the Internet of Things (IoT). The term IoT describes the technologies that connect objects, from consumer electronics to industrial components, to the Internet. ...
  • Design simplicity for panel builders
    March 2017, Omron Electronics, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    Omron’s compact unified factory automation range.
  • GHM SIM-1 SensorSimulator introduced to SA
    March 2017, GHM Messtechnik SA, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    The SIM-1 SensorSimulator, from GHM Messtechnik, offers engineers working across all sectors of industry a quality handheld device with superior functionality supported by the latest available measurement ...
  • High-end measurement technology from Beckhoff
    February 2017, Beckhoff Automation, Maintenance, Test & Measurement, Calibration
    Accurate, fast and robust: EtherCAT measurement technology modules.
  • CIP keeps food and beverage plants working efficiently
    February 2017, Endress+Hauser, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    Endress+Hauser guarantee an efficient process within the standards of quality and food safety.
  • Digital indicator for process variables
    February 2017, Loadtech Loadcells, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    The LT1200 panel-mount process indicator is a precision digital indicator for interfacing to and measuring most process variables. The LT1200 is capable of measuring and processing variables such as mA, ...
  • Affordable robot kits from RS Components
    February 2017, RS Components SA, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    RS Components has introduced two new robotic ‘bundles’, which contain all of the components required to build a four-axis robotic arm and will bring the efficiency and reliability of robotic solutions ...
  • New topologies for automation systems
    February 2017, Schneider Electric South Africa, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    New topologies made possible by the Industrial Internet of Things.
  • Real-time capable data communication via OPC UA
    February 2017, Beckhoff Automation, IT in Manufacturing
    TwinCAT 3: Direct integration of OPC UA Pub/Sub UDP extension.
  • PCS Global solution meets Nampower’s stringent requirements
    January 2017, System Integration & Control Systems Design
    Hopsol Africa specialises in the design and construction of solar power plants, targeting commercial, industrial and private customers, as well as direct feed-in independent power supply plants. The recent ...

 
 
         
Contact:
Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd
1st Floor, Stabilitas House
265 Kent Ave, Randburg, 2194
South Africa
Publications by Technews
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology
Electronic Buyers Guide (EBG)

Hi-Tech Security Solutions
Hi-Tech Security Business Directory

Motion Control in Southern Africa
Motion Control Buyers’ Guide (MCBG)

South African Instrumentation & Control
South African Instrumentation & Control Buyers’ Guide (IBG)
Other
Terms & conditions of use, including privacy policy
PAIA Manual





 

         
    classic | mobile

Copyright © Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved.