new court of justice in Aix en provence: integral home automation control of courtrooms

Designed by the studio of architect Marc Barani, the new Court of Justice of Aix en Provence (formerly Court of First Instance) opened its doors in the summer of 2021.

This building of nearly 10,000m2 and 14m high has 18 courtrooms .

Home automation audiovisual Court of Justice Aix en Provence

ITE INGENIERIE has had the privilege of being selected to carry out the audiovisual home automation of the courtrooms, in partnership with INEO Provence (EQUANS group).

Six large courtrooms have thus benefited from an ultra-modern installation that is unique in France. Indeed, the home automation architecture of the courts was usually designed on a rather complex model.

ITE INGENIERIE therefore proposed a number of changes in the preliminary project, which were validated by the Ministry of Justice and finally adopted for the future courts that will be built in the coming years.

Presidents and Registrars in charge

In these large courtrooms, the aim was to allow the presidents and court clerks to control all the technical parameters of the room easily from a Crestron touchscreen tablet (TS-1070) on their respective tables.

We have developed tailor-made interfaces, particularly user-friendly and intuitive, to control both the lighting and the blinds of the courtroom, but also all the audiovisual equipment.

 

To make this simplicity possible, we have defined an architecture based on CRESTRON solutions, and above all the manufacturer's latest innovations.

Each of the large courtrooms is controlled by its own dedicated CRESTRON ASD controller, which controls the following equipment via several CRESTRON interface modules:

  • Two projectors

  • Two cameras

  • A Cisco Webex video conferencing CODEC

  • An Audio Technica speaker and all the microphones in the room

  • An amplifier and its speakers

  • DALI lighting

  • Blinds

Speaking completely under control

One of the challenges in the management of microphones during a hearing was to give the president of the court total control over the management of speeches, and this from a user-friendly interface.

ITE INGENIERIE has designed a view on the CRESTRON touch screen which allows to graphically visualize the person who asks to speak, and by an action on the screen, to open the microphone to give it to him.

The management of microphones has been the subject of an additional innovation, allowing the Tribunal's maintenance teams to replace faulty microphones autonomously, where previously a complex intervention was required.

Microphone management view on Crestron touchpad

All these functionalities have been made possible thanks to the development by ITE INGENIERIE of the CRESTRON communication protocol for the Audio Technica speaker. This development allows the CRESTRON PLC to control all of the lecturer's commands.

Great trial of justice, big techonology

During major trials, the Ministry of Justice sometimes needs to accommodate an unusual number of participants, and sometimes one courtroom is not enough to accommodate them.

To do this, we had to develop a technical solution that would allow several courtrooms to be interconnected in a way that was extremely simple for the court staff.

This interconnection consists of choosing a courtroom to be the main courtroom where the trial will be held, and defining other rooms as "slave" rooms of the main courtroom (see photo).

Thus, the sound and video content broadcasted in the main room are directly retransmitted in real time to the "slave" room(s) where the audience is located.

Crestron NVX liaison inter salles

Here again, ITE INGENIERIE has innovated by relying on CRESTRON NVX technology ( DigitalMedia NVX range ) to design these interconnection mechanisms, all complemented by intelligent programming of the various inter-room link scenarios , and user-friendly graphical interfaces for make the operation simple, secure and reliable.

Video capture, content distribution, videoconferencing, ... in one click

During a hearing, it is possible to broadcast several types of media, but also to launch a Webex CISCO videoconference. For this purpose, ITE INGENIERIE has developed a protocol allowing the CISCO codec to be controlled from the CRESTRON PLC.

This control allows the CRESTRON touch tablet to visualise and access all the commands available on the CISCO Codec (address book, start and stop a call, add participants, etc.).

Videoconferencing relies on the two cameras present in each courtroom. These cameras have pre-positioning (preset) that the clerk or the president can trigger from their touch pad, with a "click" of the finger!

This allows them to point a camera at a specific area of the courtroom at any time.

The programming of the solution by ITE INGENIERIE also gave the Court's operating staff the possibility of modifying or creating the pre-positioning of the cameras themselves.

Crestron Screen for video sources selection