Most companies need to know that their electrical and data services are robust and reliable to ensure business continuity in the workplace. But when your business involves broadcasting live on air, the need for resilience is even greater. That’s why, when WarnerMedia commissioned a refurbishment project to create new facilities for TV and film production companies including CNN, modular power distribution systems from CMD Ltd were an essential part of the electrical fit-out strategy.

Tackling shallow floor voids

Located in an existing building in the ‘Silicone Roundabout’ area of London, the new WarnerMedia facilities include four levels of office accommodation, along with TV and film studios on levels one, lower ground and lower ground mezzanine.

Electrical contractor Bancroft, was responsible for delivering a robust and resilient Cat B fit out, with a UPS supply to protect mission critical areas from outages during live broadcasts, a power monitoring system to ensure prioritisation of back-up and an environment monitoring system to protect critical equipment.

The installation programme was mission critical to allow the facilities to become fully operational, so a modular power distribution system that provides ease and speed of installation was ideal. However, the depth of the floor voids varies significantly across the floorplates involved in the fit out, so a busbar powertrack system was not suitable for the project. Instead, CMD Ltd’s Power Hub system was specified and custom-manufactured to ensure it could fit comfortably within the void in all required locations.

Paul Allen, southern sales manager comments, “Our Power Hub system is probably the most compact on the market and the 38mm high Power Hub units used for this project enabled 6 tap offs per unit, positioned to the side of the hub, thereby avoiding any additional height. It’s a very flexible system, which is ideal for a broadcasting environment where needs change and the use of technology plays such an important role.”

Providing resilience

Business continuity is important across the new WarnerMedia facilities but it is particularly vital for the mission-critical TV and film studios on levels one, lower ground and lower ground mezzanine. It was in these areas that an additional UPS Power Hub network was installed, backed by a dedicated UPS distribution board, to provide 30 minutes of resilience in the event of an outage. Alongside the power monitoring system (PMS), this UPS network will ensure that the most critical equipment remains operational if an outage occurs, based on a hierarchy of critical assets needed for broadcasts, with the PMS opening the breakers in a preferred sequence.

The installation involved 860 primary network six gang CMD Power Hub units, along with 179 CMD Power Hub units for the UPS-supplied circuits.

Ryan Collis, Bancroft’s project manager for the installation comments: “CMD provided colour-coded units to ensure each supply can be clearly identified, with black labelled six-gang Power Hub units for the standard mains supply and red-labelled units for the UPS circuits. This will ensure that the differentiated supplies are clearly recognisable for any future maintenance or modification.”

To further safeguard mission critical equipment, CMD Ltd also supplied bespoke under desk Conti workstation power units with IEC sockets for studio areas and locations with priority devices.

“The Conti units were also specified to build additional resilience into the studio environments,” Ryan continues. “By installing an alternative socket type in the under desk unit in these locations, we have ensured that no mission-critical equipment is unplugged inadvertently.”

For less critical locations, the Bancroft team installed Rotasoc under desk units, manufactured at CMD’s factory in Rotherham. The modular workstation power units provide 3600 smooth and continuous socket movement, providing increased flexibility for desk layouts and equipment configuration.

RCBO circuit protection has been built into all Conti and Rotasoc modular workstation power units installed across the project.

“Our remit was to deliver flexible, futureproof and resilient electrical services for all the media and creative businesses within the WarnerMedia offices,” Ryan adds. “CMD Ltd was able to provide a complete solution, tailored to the needs of the project.”