Facilities Rules 2009-2013

FR 4.1 Automatic and Semi-Automatic Officiating Equipment records the elapsed time of each swimmer and determines the relative place in a race. Judging and timing shall be to 2 decimal places (1/100 of a second). Equipment that is installed shall not interfere with the swimmers' starts, turns, or the function of the overflow system.

FR 4.2 The Equipment must:

FR 4.2.1 Be activated by the starter.

FR 4.2.2 Have no exposed wires on the pool deck, if possible.

FR 4.2.3 Be able to display all recorded information for each lane by place and by lane.

FR 4.2.4 Provide easy digital reading of a swimmer's time.

FR 4.3 Starting devices

FR 4.3.1 The starter shall have a microphone for oral commands.

FR 4.3.2 If a pistol is used, it shall be used with a transducer.

FR 4.3.3 Both the microphone and the transducer shall be connected to loudspeakers at each starting block where both the starter's commands and the starting signal can be heard equally and simultaneously by each swimmer.

FR 4.4 Touch panels for Automatic Equipment

FR 4.4.1 The minimum measurement of the touch panels shall be 2.4 metres wide and 0.9 metre high, and their thickness shall be 0.01 metre ± 0.002 metre. They shall extend 0.3 metre above and 0.6 metre below the surface of the water. The equipment in each lane shall be connected independently, so it may be controlled individually. The surface of the panels shall be of a bright colour and shall bear the line markings approved for the end walls.

FR 4.4.2 Installation - The touch panels shall be installed in a fixed position in the centre of the lanes. The panels may be portable, allowing the pool operator to remove them when there are no competitors.

FR 4.4.3 Sensitivity - The sensitivity of the panels shall be such that they cannot be activated by water turbulence, but will be activated by a light hand touch. The panels shall be sensitive on the top edge.

FR 4.4.4 Markings - The markings on the panels shall conform with and superimpose on the existing markings of the pool. The perimeter and edges of the panels shall be defined by a 0.025 metre black border.

FR 4.4.5 Safety - The panels shall be safe from the possibility of electrical shock and shall not have sharp edges.

FR 4.5 With Semi-Automatic Equipment, the finish shall be recorded by buttons pushed by timekeepers at the finish touch of the swimmer.

FR 4.6 The following accessories are essential for a minimum installation of Automatic Equipment:

FR 4.6.1 Printout of all information, which can be regenerated during a succeeding race.

FR 4.6.2 Spectator readout board.

FR 4.6.3 Relay take-off judging to 1/100 of a second. Where overhead video cameras are installed they may be reviewed as a supplement to the automatic system’s judgement of relay take-off. For the differential in the relays take-off the manufacturer of the device shall be consulted.

FR 4.6.4 Automatic lap counter.

FR 4.6.5 Readout of splits.

FR 4.6.6 Computer summaries.

FR 4.6.7 Correction of erroneous touch.

FR 4.6.8 Automatic rechargeable battery operation possibility.

FR 4.7 For Olympic Games and World Championships the following accessories are also essential:

FR 4.7.1 The spectator electronic read-out board shall contain at least twelve (12) lines of thirty-two (32) characters, each capable of displaying both letters and numbers. Each character shall have a minimum height of 360 mm. Each line –matrix scoreboard shall be able to scroll up or down, with blink function, and each full matrix scoreboard shall be programmable, and capable of showing animation. The board must have a minimum size of 7.5 m width by 4.5m height.

FR 4.7.2 There shall be an air-conditioned control centre, with dimensions of a least 6.0 metres x 3.0 metres, located between 3.0 metres and 5.0 metres from the finish wall, with an unobstructed view of the finish wall at all times during the race. The referee must have easy access to the control centre during the competition. At all other times the control centre shall be able to be secured.

FR 4.7.3 Video-tape timing system.

FR 4.8 Semi-Automatic Equipment may be used as a backup to the Automatic Officiating Equipment at FINA or other major events if there are three buttons per lane, each operated by a separate official (in which case other finish judges shall not be required). An inspector of turns may operate one of the buttons.