If you’re a security or facilities manager, you may already be aware of the quiet revolution that’s taking place across businesses and organizations up and down the country. By the end of 2020, 20% of all ID and access control systems featured mobile capability, and this is set to increase by a further 34% over the next three years. There’s no doubt that using a smartphone or mobile device in place of traditional credential and access control is a growing trend that’s o...
Businesses are always looking for cost-efficient solutions to upgrade their security level. AXIS Entry Manager’s customers can now extend access control efficiently and affordably with Aperio battery-powered locks from ASSA ABLOY. Online integration of the AXIS A1001 Network Door Controller with Aperio cylinders, escutcheons, and locks give facility managers real-time control over more doors. Administrators continue to manage every locking point from one AXIS Entry Manager interface, ther...
Honeywell, a global front-runner in connected buildings, announced the launch of the Honeywell E-Mon Class 6000 product range, a new generation of multi-protocol-capable energy meters to provide fast, accurate tenant billing or to optimize a building’s energy use. The initial offering, Honeywell E-Mon Class 6200 Pulse Meter, is a compact submeter that is versatile, field configurable and reliable with revenue-grade accuracy for better cost distribution. User-friendly The Honeywell E-Mon...
Driven by the development of AI (Artificial Intelligence) and IoT (Internet of Things) technology, Network Video Recorder/NVR is no longer just the traditional data storage center in CCTV systems today. From initial connection demands of third-party IPC and PTZ suppliers, and docking demands of alarm sensor and platform manufactures, to alliance demands of algorithm and app developers, NVR (Network Video Recorder) is playing an increasingly significant role in connecting front-end devices, alar...
Gradiant leads a project to develop a technology capable of verifying the identity of citizens in the online processes of public services in a secure, easy-to-use, and private way. To do so, the alliance will work on the concept of Electronic Identity (eID), the way users can identify themselves through the network and will use Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain technologies to ensure the process. This is IMPULSE (Identity Management in PUbLic SErvices), an initiative with a budget of around...
In response to gaps in the short-range air defense radar market, Numerica Corporation (Numerica), a globally renowned company in designing and deploying state-of-the-art defense technology, has announced the development of a new USA-made, 3D radar solution for Counter Unmanned Aircraft Systems (C-UAS) and other short-range defense missions, Spyglass short-range surveillance radar system. Spyglass 3D Radar Designed to fill the need for exceptional C-UAS detection and tracking performance, Spygl...
Strategic Security Solutions (S3), the provider of information security consulting services for identity and access management (IAM), governance, risk and compliance, and SAP Security, announces it has formed an advisory board to provide support and guidance for S3’s strategic growth initiatives. The initial members include two widely renowned cybersecurity industry experts, Peter Tran and Michael Brown, Rear Admiral, USN (Retired), who will apply their experience to help S3 identify new strategic and tactical identity security solution opportunities and provide expert guidance on growth execution and customer delivery excellence. Information security challenges “We are proud to welcome two highly esteemed cybersecurity experts to our growing advisory board roster,” said Johanna Renee Baum, CPA, CISA, CEO and founder of S3. “At S3, we define ourselves by the experience and strength of our consultants. Tran and Brown’s technical backgrounds and deep knowledge of the cybersecurity space will bolster our group of experts and the innovative approaches we take to solving complex information security challenges and producing strategic results.” Tran is currently CISO and head of cyber and product security solutions at InferSight Tran is currently CISO and head of cyber and product security solutions at InferSight, responsible for global product security, breach response, enterprise active cyber defense operations and applied counter threat innovation, techniques, tactics, and analysis. He possesses more than 20 years of demonstrated field experience focused on developing, implementing, and growing cutting-edge cyber counter threat and exploitation solutions to address new innovations, applications, and applied cybersecurity defense methods. Cyber defense operations Prior to InferSight, Tran was vice president for Worldpay’s cyber defense operations and security strategy. He was founder, general manager, and senior director for RSA Security’s Advanced Cyber Defense (ACD) practice where he focused on next-generation information security operations designs, tactical field deployments, exploitation discovery and response solutions. Brown is the founder and president of Spinnaker Security LLC and managing partner at Resilient Advisors. Prior to his current position, he was president of RSA Federal LLC and vice president/general manager Global Public Sector of RSA Security LLC, where he oversaw RSA Information Technology, Security and Enterprise Risk Management portfolios. Cybersecurity mission activities Brown joined RSA after a career of more than 31 years in the United States Navy, where he held leadership positions within the Department of Defense (DOD) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regarding cybersecurity. Brown joined RSA after a career of more than 31 years in the United States Navy His last position on active duty was as the director, cybersecurity coordination for DOD and DHS, where he was responsible for increasing interdepartmental collaboration in strategic planning for the nation’s cybersecurity, mutual support for cybersecurity capabilities development, and synchronization of current operational cybersecurity mission activities. “I am incredibly excited to be working with S3 as a member of its advisory board,” said Michael Brown. Delivering innovative solutions “The vision and capabilities that S3 brings to today’s complex situations are exactly what is necessary to solve the business and security problems of today and tomorrow. Their wealth of experience in delivering innovative solutions to their customers will allow them to continue to grow and ensure their critical place in the cybersecurity and IAM ecosystem.” “S3 is in a unique position as an industry leader within the IAM solutions space,” said Peter Tran. “Their proven IAM strategic approach, designs, and implementations across multiple technology platforms has proven to stand the test of time for some of the most notable Fortune 500 and Global 1000 companies around the word. I am thrilled to be a member of S3’s advisory board as the demand for IAM solutions continues to accelerate.”
Euralarm congratulates the Portuguese EU Council Presidency and fully supports the Presidency's objectives of supporting the European Single Market and leading the European Union towards a more resilient, global, greener, fair, and more digital society. Since 1970, the association has worked hard to contribute to the European ideals by representing the interests of the fire safety and security industry in the areas of standardization development and legislation. Over the past years, Euralarm has repeatedly expressed its concern over the European Commission’s interference in EU harmonized standards. Euralarm, together with its partners and stakeholders, consider harmonized standards to be a market-driven implementation tool, rather than an extension of EU law. Green and digital transition Euralarm believes that the standardization processes that have been effective will continue to be successful To successfully recover from the present crisis and enable the industry to fully contribute to the green and digital transition, Euralarm urges the EU to stop treating harmonized standards as part of EU law but rather consider them to be part of the revision of the Industrial Strategy for Europe and the NLF for products. Euralarm believes that the standardization processes that have been effective for so many years will continue to be successful, if the Commission, Member States, European standardization organizations, and other stakeholders participate in that process. By doing so, they support innovation in Europe and enable the industry to thrive on a global scale. The very essence of standardization is that it is a bottom-up process driven by a consensus of the industry through European standardization organizations. Impact on innovation Using standards as a legislation tool not only contradicts this concept but adds unnecessary burden and costs to the industry and consequently has a negative impact on innovation, loss of competitive edge in the global standardization. Euralarm, therefore, urges that, rather than changing today’s process, the stakeholders involved in European standardization should continue to cooperate and strive for an innovative, and transparent market to deliver high quality products, systems, and services for the benefit of Europe’s society and economy.
Honeywell, a global provider of connected buildings, and IDEMIA, a global provider of Augmented Identity, announced a strategic alliance to create and cultivate an intelligent building ecosystem that provides a more seamless and enhanced experience for operators and occupants alike. The alliance will integrate Honeywell’s security and building management systems with IDEMIA’s biometric-based access control systems to create frictionless, safer, and more efficient buildings. The Honeywell and IDEMIA alliance is intended to design solutions that will allow occupants to easily and securely have contactless engagement with a building - from vehicle recognition at the car park and automatic elevator calls to biometric-based access and personalized conference room settings. With a focus on security and data privacy, these next-generation solutions will provide occupants with a safer, more efficient, and more enjoyable experience that will help building owners attract tenants. Complex security requirements “We recognize that our customers need to deliver business outcomes like managing complex security requirements and providing healthier, more productive environments,” said Manish Sharma, Vice President, Chief Technology and Chief Product Officer for Honeywell Building Technologies. We will create an intelligent building ecosystem that better addresses our customers’ key challenges" “By working with IDEMIA, we will create an intelligent building ecosystem that better addresses our customers’ key challenges and drives their desired outcomes. Whether it’s a commercial office building, a hospital or an airport, we have the ability to change the way people experience and interact with buildings for the better.” Safety and security systems “We look forward to expanding our long-standing relationship with Honeywell to bring greater value to our customers with more integrated solutions that make for a more seamless building experience,” said Matt Cole, CEO, Secure Enterprise Transactions Division, IDEMIA. “The ability for our technology to easily integrate with Honeywell safety and security systems will provide building owners and operators more insight and control into creating more efficient buildings, while putting the occupant experience first.” Facial recognition terminal IDEMIA’s field-proven AI-based products and solutions - like MorphoWaveTM, a contactless fingerprint device that scans four fingerprints in less than one second; VisionPass, the most advanced facial recognition terminal; or Augmented Vision, a biometric video analytics platform - integrate with Honeywell security and building management systems. Honeywell’s systems include Pro-Watch Integrated Security Suite, MAXPRO Cloud and Enterprise Buildings Integrator. Honeywell and IDEMIA will work together to deliver powerful integrations through aligned product creation Honeywell and IDEMIA will work together to deliver more powerful integrations through aligned product creation and joint product roadmaps. The integrated offerings will allow building operators to respond rapidly and effectively to alarms or incidents by providing an incident workflow package that allows Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to be configured, reducing compliance exceptions, security risks and response times. Personal protection equipment IDEMIA products also support Honeywell’s Healthy Buildings solutions that help building owners improve building environments, operate more cleanly and safely and encourage sustained compliance with changing building standards, safety guidelines, government-issued regulations and a company's risk management policies. Honeywell's Healthy Buildings solutions provide a holistic view of a building's health based on key factors such as indoor air quality, occupant flow, personal protection equipment (PPE) analytics, contactless access, thermal screening, social distancing and sanitation efficacy.
Cybersecurity leaders and home to the brands eScan, MailScan, and Nemasis, MicroWorld Group of Companies have announced the promotion of Ms. Shweta Thakare to the position of Vice President - Global Sales & Marketing. Effective immediately, she will be responsible for handling the marketing strategies and promotions of all of MicroWorld’s cybersecurity brands, propagating the brand message, and strengthening their presence across the globe with compelling sales. She will continue to be intimately involved in day-to-day operations, but with a concentrated focus on overall business strategy and sales opportunities that will drive the company’s long-term success. Global footprint Ms. Thakare has been instrumental in the propagation and success of MicroWorld’s flagship brand eScan across global markets“Ms. Thakare has been a pivotal figure in shaping MicroWorld’s global footprint. She is an extremely well-known figure in the field of cybersecurity and her promotion to such an important position recognises the vital role that she has played and will continue to play in strengthening our leading position as industry leaders both domestically and internationally.” said Mr. Govind Rammurthy, Managing Director and CEO of MicroWorld Group of Companies. With a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and a Master's degree in International Business, Ms. Thakare has been instrumental in the propagation and success of MicroWorld’s flagship brand eScan across global markets. Compliance with regulations Ms. Shweta Thakare, Vice President - Global Sales & Marketing quoted “My association with MicroWorld started a couple of decades ago and it has been an exciting journey. I would like to thank the management at MicroWorld for investing their faith in me. I would also like to thank my entire team who, over the years, have supported me and the brand in many ways and have aided our simultaneous growth." "In my current role, I look forward to taking our brands eScan & MailScan to greater heights while establishing Nemasis as a major brand in the international markets as well." ‘Nemasis’ is a Vulnerability Management Suite that assists in implementing a comprehensive GRC (Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance) strategy for managing an organization's overall governance, risk, and compliance with regulations.
Zenitel announces that it has received LenelS2 factory certification as part of the LenelS2™ OpenAccess Alliance Program (OAAP). Zenitel’s ICX-AlphaCom, AlphaCom XE, IC-EDGE, TCIV+, and TCIV interface with the OnGuard® version 8.0 access control system providing customers with solutions for a unified and scalable enterprise security platform. “Zenitel has completed required factory testing at LenelS2 to validate the functionality of its interface to the OnGuard system. The interface between the Zenitel products and the OnGuard system provides customers with the ability to integrate intelligent communications into their security solutions,” said John Marchioli, OAAP product management, LenelS2. “We look forward to their continued involvement in the LenelS2 OpenAccess Alliance Program.” Unified security platform “We continue to remain proud of our long-lasting relationship with LenelS2. Customers are aware that when deploying LenelS2’s OnGuard solution with Zenitel’s systems and devices, they are deploying a unified security platform. A unified security platform not only provides complete situational awareness, which is critical during emergency situations, but also business optimization in streamlining daily operational needs,” states Kelly Lake, Director of Strategic Alliances, Zenitel. “In today’s current situation of social distancing, the security perimeter of buildings and campuses has been pushed out even further. Being able to implement audio and record its events into the OnGuard system can provide organizations with a greater peace of mind in protecting their employees, visitors, and facilities.” Processing data faster The enhanced efficiency in data processing provides the opportunity for integration into various security The newest Zenitel product that has been certified with the OnGuard system is the TCIV+, which incorporates crystal-clear, HD voice and video technology within the same form factor as the Turbine Compact (TCIS, TCIV) range. Installation, functionality, and capabilities remain the same as with other Turbine stations, making it easy to upgrade. The wide-angle lens delivers excellent performance, day or night. The Field of View captures a wide area around the station, and a 30-per-second frame rate provides a natural look for any movement caught on camera. For performance, the 4 x Cortex-A53 CPU cores and 512MB LPDDR4 RAM ensures that the TCIV+ series is processing data faster, which translates into stability, uptime, and a long product lifetime. The enhanced efficiency in data processing provides the opportunity for integration into various security and business platforms and opens the door for greater system capabilities in the future.
Dahua Technology, a front-runner video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, is proud to announce that the Dahua Global Virtual Innovation Center is now available to its global customers. By demonstrating its latest technologies, products, and solutions through an online virtual showroom, the center can support customers in designing excellent security systems. Due to the drastic impact of COVID-19, people are having difficulties in gaining access and experiencing the development of products and technologies in their field of interest while keeping themselves safe and healthy at the same time. AIoT future Browse the most up-to-date security technologies, products and solutions from the comfort and safety of ones home or office As an innovation-driven company, Dahua Technology stands against the difficulties and challenges brought by the unprecedented pandemic by fully embracing digital transformation. The company launched the Dahua Global Virtual Innovation Center in order to drive innovation to an AIoT future. No matter where one is, one can simply browse the most up-to-date security technologies, products and solutions from the comfort and safety of ones home or office, and get resources and knowledge that can help one with ones next security project. Benefits that the center offers Browse the latest technology wherever one are 24/7 Broad range of products and vertical industry solutions on display 360-degree eye-catching product showcases available in VR Download product datasheets, images and other information directly to ones device Additional features With the Dahua Global Virtual Innovation Center, one can learn about the up-to-date products and solutions of Dahua Technology in an economical and safe manner. Moreover, one can also simply click a button to mark the products that interest one as favorite, as well as send emails to request for more information. With its mission of “Enabling a Safer Society and Smarter Living”, Dahua Technology will continue to focus on “Innovation, Quality, and Service” to serve its partners and customers around the world.
The sound of sirens in the distance is commonplace, nowadays. Whether related to a medical emergency or everyday crimes, such as theft, property crimes, and so on, we’re all accustomed to hearing these sirens by now. It is worth noting that many incidents that police respond to take place at night. According to a recent report by the Sleep Judge, more than half of murders, manslaughter, sexual assaults, robberies, aggravated assaults and motor vehicle thefts happen long after the sun has set. To anyone looking to address the round-the-clock security challenge, deploying the most comprehensive surveillance solution is a must, and this means, looking at the instrumental role illumination plays in video capture. Limitations of Traditional Video Surveillance If surveillance cameras can’t be used to prevent, detect and/or resolve crimes that occur in these areas, the entire security operation is obsolete For surveillance cameras relying on video analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver functionalities such as facial recognition, license plate reading and motion detection, nighttime crimes can pose something of a problem. Without adequate illumination, images from video cameras are grainy and unusable. Without proper lighting, potential criminals and moving objects essentially become indistinguishable, at night, thereby inhibiting even the most advanced security technologies. This limitation of traditional surveillance technology not only hinders immediate police response, but it also stops crime investigations dead in their tracks. Often, without video evidence that is clear and discernible, conviction in a court of law is next to impossible. A common response to this issue is to place security cameras near streetlights or well-lit areas. After all, according to NPR, street lights are effective in deterring crime, as “there are people — neighbors, pedestrians or police — to actually see suspicious activity.” However, even if streetside and primary entrances are well lit, the areas that still need most to be surveilled are rear or side doorways shrouded by darkness, unlit back alleys, and so on. If surveillance cameras can’t be used to prevent, detect and resolve crimes that occur in these areas, the entire security operation is obsolete. Best-in-class security solutions must be able to see everything, day and night. A Purpose-Designed Solution to the Problem Addressing this issue is easier than you might think. Much like a human eye needs some sort of light to “see,” so does video surveillance technology. Integrating external illuminators into a security solution can optimize camera performance exponentially, expanding a camera’s video capture and coverage abilities and ensuring the operation of video analytics, day and night. Opting for an external illuminator allows system integrators to select a device that matches the exact emission range of a camera’s field of view (FOV). The result is an evenly lit visual field, where captured images are clear and effective for security purposes. The two most common options available to integrators include infrared (IR) and white light illuminators. Each technology is built to optimize particular deployments, depending on their needs. Infrared Versus White Light IR illuminators emit IR light, which is invisible to the human eye and perfect for covert surveillance operations. When cameras need to be able to detect potential threats over long distances, IR illuminators are perfect for the job as they typically have longer emission ranges. IR illuminators are optimal for surveillance operations in license plate recognition, border patrol, safe cities, theme park, and medical sleep lab applications. If an end user needs to implement full-color video analytics for identification purposes, such as facial, object and license plate recognition, white light illuminators are undoubtedly an integrator’s best bet. IR illumination and traditional thermal security cameras, after all, are only able to provide black-and-white images, whereas object recognition software often identifies objects based on their color. White light illuminators installed alongside AI-powered surveillance cameras enable enhanced video image clarity, which, optimizes video analytics performance. When customers want to physically deter suspicious activity, deploying white light illuminators is effective. A recent study out of Crime Labs New York found that businesses that deployed visible lights to deter crime “experienced crime rates that were significantly lower,” which “led to a 36 percent reduction in ‘index crimes’”. On top of all this, LED based white lights operate at low running costs and typically have long lifespans, saving end users thousands of dollars a year in energy costs without having to sacrifice surveillance optimization. External Versus Built-In Illumination Security customers looking to use lighting to deter crime and improve the performance of video surveillance may consider “all-in-one" solutions, as some cameras have LEDs (light emitting diodes) built into them. These LEDs typically encircle the lens and therefore shed light in whatever direction the camera is pointed. However convenient these may seem, built-in illumination can cause problems.Cameras deployed without proper illumination are rendered blind, especially at night First, LEDs built into cameras and next to other electronic components often cause heat to build up, which attracts insects that can trigger motion detection and obstruct a camera’s view. This heat buildup also shortens the LED lights lifespan. Built-in LEDs also tend to create “hot spots” with glare and reflection back into the camera, often because these lights only cover a 30-degree field of view (FOV), even though the average camera’s FOV is 90 degrees. This issue can severely limit a camera’s visibility, essentially rendering those remaining 60 degrees dark and unusable. All in all, when integrating lighting solutions into your security deployment, a cost-effective solution that enhances a camera’s video capture and coverage abilities, are external illuminators because they offer flexible choices of field of view and distances. Best-in-Class Solution When it comes to criminal conviction in a court of law, “seeing really is believing.” Cameras deployed without proper illumination are rendered blind, especially at night, just as any security officer would be when patrolling the same unlit area. To guarantee end users the most reliable and highest performing security solution, consider integrating best-in-class illumination into your offerings.
While the application of facial recognition within both public and private spheres continues to draw criticism from those who see it as a threat to civil rights, this technology has become extremely commonplace in the lives of iPhone users. It is so prevalent, in fact, that by 2024 it is predicted that 90% of smartphones will use biometric facial recognition hardware. CCTV surveillance cameras Similarly, CCTV is a well-established security measure that many of us are familiar with, whether through spotting images displayed on screens in shops, hotels and offices, or noticing cameras on the side of buildings. It is therefore necessary we ask the question of why, when facial recognition is integrated with security surveillance technology, does it become such a source of contention? It is not uncommon for concerns to be voiced against innovation. History has taught us that it is human nature to fear the unknown, especially if it seems that it may change life as we know it. Yet technology is an ever-changing, progressive part of the 21st century and it is important we start to shift the narrative away from privacy threats, to the force for good that LFR (Live Facial Recognition) represents. Live Facial Recognition (LFR) We understand the arguments from those that fear the ethics of AI and the data collection within facial recognition Across recent weeks, we have seen pleas from UK organizations to allow better police access to facial recognition technology in order to fight crime. In the US, there are reports that LAPD is the latest police force to be properly regulating its use of facial recognition to aid criminal investigations, which is certainly a step in the right direction. While it is understandable that society fears technology that they do not yet understand, this lack of knowledge is exactly why the narrative needs to shift. We understand the arguments from those that fear the ethics of AI and the data collection within facial recognition, we respect these anxieties. However, it is time to level the playing field of the facial recognition debate and communicate the plethora of benefits it offers society. Facial recognition technology - A force for good Facial recognition technology has already reached such a level of maturity and sophistication that there are huge opportunities for it to be leveraged as a force for good in real-world scenarios. As well as making society safer and more secure, I would go as far to say that LFR is able to save lives. One usage that could have a dramatic effect on reducing stress in people with mental conditions is the ability for facial recognition to identify those with Alzheimer’s. If an older individual is seemingly confused, lost or distressed, cameras could alert local medical centers or police stations of their identity, condition and where they need to go (a home address or a next of kin contact). Granted, this usage would be one that does incorporate a fair bit of personal data, although this information would only be gathered with consent from each individual. Vulnerable people could volunteer their personal data to local watchlists in order to ensure their safety when out in society, as well as to allow quicker resolutions of typically stressful situations. Tracking and finding missing persons Another possibility for real world positives to be drawn from facial recognition is to leverage the technology to help track or find missing persons, a lost child for instance. The most advanced forms of LFR in the market are now able to recognize individuals even if up to 50% of their face is covered and from challenging or oblique angles. Therefore, there is a significant opportunity not only to return people home safely, more quickly, but also reduce police hours spent on analyzing CCTV footage. Rapid scanning of images Facial recognition technology can rapidly scan images for a potential match Facial recognition technology can rapidly scan images for a potential match, as a more reliable and less time-consuming option than the human alternative. Freed-up officers could also then work more proactively on the ground, patrolling their local areas and increasing community safety and security twofold. It is important to understand that these facial recognition solutions should not be applied to every criminal case, and the technology must be used responsibly. However, these opportunities to use LFR as force for good are undeniable. Debunking the myths One of the central concerns around LFR is the breach of privacy that is associated with ‘watchlists’. There is a common misconception, however, that the data of every individual that passes a camera is processed and then stored. The reality is that watch lists are compiled with focus on known criminals, while the general public can continue life as normal. The very best facial recognition will effectively view a stream of blurred faces, until it detects one that it has been programmed to recognize. For example, an individual that has previously shoplifted from a local supermarket may have their biometric data stored, so when they return to that location the employees are alerted to a risk of further crimes being committed. Considering that the cost of crime prevention to retailers in recent years has been around £1 billion, which therefore impacts consumer prices and employee wages, security measures to tackle this issue are very much in the public interest. Most importantly, the average citizen has no need to fear being ‘followed’ by LFR cameras. If data is stored, it is for a maximum of 0.6 seconds before being deleted. Privacy Privacy is ingrained in facial recognition solutions, yet it seems the debate often ignores this side of the story Privacy is ingrained in facial recognition solutions, yet it seems the debate often ignores this side of the story. It is essential we spend more time and effort communicating exactly why watchlists are made, who they are made for and how they are being used, if we want to de-bunk myths and change the narrative. As science and technology professionals, heading up this exciting innovation, we must put transparency and accountability at the center of what we do. Tony Porter, former Surveillance Camera Commissioner and current CPO at Corsight AI, has previously worked on developing processes that audit and review watch lists. Such restrictions are imperative in order for AI and LFR to be used legally, as well as ethically and responsibly. Biometrics, mask detection and contactless payments Nevertheless, the risks do not outweigh the benefits. Facial recognition should and can be used for good in so many more ways than listed above, including biometric, contactless payments, detecting whether an individual is wearing a facemask and is therefore, safe to enter a building, identifying a domestic abuse perpetrator returning to the scene of a crime and alerting police. There are even opportunities for good that we have not thought of yet. It is therefore not only a waste not to use this technology where we can, prioritising making society a safer place, it is immoral to stand by and let crimes continue while we have effective, reliable mitigation solutions.
Like most industries, the fields of security, access, and safety have been transformed by technology, with AI-driven automation presenting a clear opportunity for players seeking growth and leadership when it comes to innovation. In this respect, these markets know exactly what they want. They require solutions that accurately (without false or negative positives) classify and track people and/or vehicles as well as the precise location and interactions between those objects. They want to have access to accurate data generated by best-of-class solutions irrespective of the sensor modality. And, they need to be able to easily deploy such solutions, at the lowest capex and opex, with the knowledge that they can be integrated with preferred VMSs and PSIMs, be highly reliable, have low install and maintenance overheads and be well supported. With these needs in mind, camera and computer vision technology providers, solutions providers, and systems integrators are forging ahead and have created exemplary ecosystems with established partnerships helping to accelerate adoption. At the heart of this are AI and applications of Convolutional neural networks (CNN), an architecture often used in computer vision deep learning algorithms, which are accomplishing tasks that were extremely difficult with traditional software. But what about 3D sensing technologies and perception? The security, safety, and access market have an additional crucial need: they must mitigate risk and make investments that deliver for the long-term. This means that if a systems integrator invests in a 3D sensing data perception platform today, it will support their choice of sensors, perception strategies, applications, and use cases over time without having to constantly reinvest in alternative computer hardware and perception software each time they adopt new technology or systems. This begs the question - if the security industry knows what it needs, why is it yet to fully embrace 3D sensing modalities? Perception strategy Intelligent perception strategies are yet to evolve which sees designers lock everything down at the design phaseWell, one problem facing security, safety, and access solutions providers, systems integrators, and end-users when deploying first-generation 3D sensing-based solutions is the current approach. Today, intelligent perception strategies have yet to evolve beyond the status quo which sees designers lock everything down at the design phase, including the choice of the sensor(s), off-the-shelf computer hardware, and any vendor-specific or 3rd party perception software algorithms and deep learning or artificial intelligence. This approach not only builds in constraints for future use-cases and developments, it hampers the level of perception developed by the machine. Indeed, the data used to develop or train the perception algorithms for security, access, and safety use cases at design time is typically captured for a narrow and specific set of scenarios or contexts and are subsequently developed or trained in the lab. Technology gaps As those in this industry know too well, siloed solutions and technology gaps typically block the creation of productive ecosystems and partnerships while lack of commercial whole products can delay market adoption of new innovation. Perception systems architectures today do not support the real-time adaptation of software and computing engines in the field. They remain the same as those selected during the design phase and are fixed for the entire development and the deployment stage. Crucially, this means that the system cannot deal with the unknowns of contextually varying real-time situations where contexts are changing (e.g being able to reflex to security situations they haven’t been trained for) and where the autonomous system’s perception strategies need to dynamically adjust accordingly. Ultimately, traditional strategies have non-scalable and non-adaptable competing computing architectures that were not designed to process the next generation of algorithms, deep learning, and artificial intelligence required for 3D sensor mixed workloads. What this means for industries seeking to develop or deploy perception systems, like security, access, and safety, is that the available computing architectures are generic and designed for either graphic rendering or data processing. Solutions providers, therefore, have little choice but to promote these architectures heavily into the market. Consequently, the resulting computing techniques are defined by the computing providers and not by the software developers working on behalf of the customer deploying the security solution. Context…. we don’t know what we don’t know Perception platform must have the ability to adjust to changes in context, thereby improving the performance post-deployment To be useful and useable in the security context and others, a perception platform must have the ability to adjust to changes in context, can self-optimize, and crucially, can self-learn, thereby improving the performance post-deployment. The combinations of potential contextual changes in a real-life environment, such as an airport or military base, are innumerable, non-deterministic, real-time, often analog, and unpredictable. The moment sensors, edge computing hardware, and perception software are deployed in the field, myriad variables such as weather, terrain as well as sensor mounting location and orientation all represent a context shift where the perception systems’ solution is no longer optimal. For example, it might be that a particular sensor system is deployed in an outdoor scenario with heavy foliage. Because the algorithm development or training was completed in the lab, the moving foliage, bushes, or low trees and branches are classified as humans or some other false-positive result. Typically, heavy software customization and onsite support then ensue, requiring on-site support by solutions vendors where each and every sensor configuration needs to be hand-cranked to deliver something that is acceptable to the end customer. A new approach for effective perception strategies Cron AI is building senseEDGE, which represents a significant evolution in the development of sensing to information strategy. It is a 3D sensing perception and computer vision platform built from the ground up to address and remove the traditional deployment and performance bottlenecks we’ve just described. senseEDGE is aware of the user application reaction plan indication to trigger an alarm or turning on a CCTV camera The entire edge platform is built around a real-time scalable and adaptable computing architecture that’s flexible enough for algorithms and software to scale and adapt to different workloads and contexts. What’s more, it has real-time contextual awareness, which means that the entire edge platform is, at any time, aware of the external context, the sensor and sensor architecture, and the requirements of the user application. Furthermore, when it produces the object output data, it also aware of the user application reaction plan indication, which could be triggering an alarm or turning on a CCTV camera when a specific action is detected. This approach turns traditional perception strategies on their head: it is software-defined programmable perception and computing architecture, not hardware-defined. It is free from the constraints imposed by traditional CPU or GPU compute dictated by hardware architecture providers and not limited to the perception built defined during design time. And, being fully configurable, it can be moved from one solution to another, providing computation for different modalities of sensors designed for different use cases or environments, and lower risk of adoption and migration for those developing the security solution. Future perception requirements senseEDGE is also able to scale to future perception requirements, such as algorithms and workloads produced by future sensors as well as computational techniques and neural networks that have yet to be invented. Meanwhile, latency versus throughput is totally software-defined and not limited by providers of computing architecture. Finally, contextually aware, it is fully connected to the real world where the reflexes adapt to even the subtlest changes in context, which makes all the difference in time and accuracy in critical security situations. This is how CronAI sees the future of perception. It means that security and safety innovators can now access and invest with low risk in a useable and scalable perception solution that can truly take advantage of current and future 3D sensor modalities.
Thermal cameras can be used for rapid and safe initial temperature screening of staff, visitors and customers. Used the right way, the cameras can help prevent unnecessary spread of viruses like the novel coronavirus. During the global pandemic, use of thermal cameras has increased, but they have not always been used correctly, and therefore, not effectively. Hikvision’s temperature screening thermal products are currently assisting users in initial temperature screening across the global market. During 2020, demand increased in most markets, and the company highly recommends that Hikvision’s thermographic cameras be used in accordance with local laws and regulations. Limitations of the technology include throughput and the impact of ambient conditions. Detect viruses and fever Hikvision releases a video that illustrates how skin temperature measurements are normalized within minutes Thermal cameras cannot detect viruses and fever and should only be used as a first line of screening before using secondary measures to confirm, says Stefan Li, Thermal Product Director at Hikvision. “We also believe it is important for businesses and authorities to use [thermal cameras] alongside a full program of additional health and safety procedures, which includes handwashing, regular disinfection of surfaces, wearing protective clothing such as masks, and social distancing.” Hikvision has released a video that illustrates how skin temperature measurements are normalized within minutes after someone emerges from the cold. Mr. Li says the video demonstrates the accuracy of forehead measurement under difficult circumstances when people come inside from a cold outdoor environment. Temperature screening facilities “There have been some claims that measuring the forehead temperature is not as accurate as measuring the inner canthus, and we believe this video demonstrates the accuracy of forehead measurement very well,” he says. “We also illustrate how the skin temperature will experience a process of recovery (warming up), no matter if it is measured by a thermal camera or a thermometer.” Mr. Li adds that people should wait five minutes in such circumstances before starting a temperature measurement. “We hope that stakeholders who are involved in the design of temperature screening facilities and associated health and safety procedures will recognize how important it is to consider the skin temperature recovery time, and that forehead measurement can provide accurate test results,” says Mr. Li. Thermal imaging manufacturers The algorithm is based on a large number of test results to obtain a value that tends to be dynamically balanced The temperature measurement principle of thermal imaging is to detect the heat radiation emitted by the human body. The detected heat value often does not reflect the true internal body temperature of an individual. Furthermore, the temperature varies among different parts of the human, such as the forehead, ears, underarms, etc. A temperature compensation algorithm can be used to adjust the measured skin temperature to align with the internal body temperature. The algorithm is based on a large number of test results to obtain a value that tends to be dynamically balanced. At present, thermal imaging manufacturers in the market, and even forehead thermometer manufacturers, have developed their own algorithms to map the skin temperature measured by the camera to the internal body temperature, so as to compensate the skin temperature to the internal body temperature. Thermal cameras This is also why Hikvision recommends that the "actual body temperature" should be checked with a secondary device for confirmation. The calibration work for a thermal camera is completed in the production process at the factory, including calibration of reference values and detection point and so on. At the same time, the equipment parameters should be adjusted before on-site use to ensure accurate temperature reads. Hikvision does not deny the accuracy of temperature measurement at the inner canthus but prefers forehead temperature measurement and algorithms based on actual use scenarios, says Mr. Li. A large amount of test data and practical results indicates that the forehead is a correct and easy-to-use temperature measurement area, says the company. There are advantages and disadvantages of choosing different facial areas for temperature measurement. Default compensation temperature Two main approaches direct the measurement area and how compensation algorithms are applied: Forehead area + default forehead compensation algorithm value Upper half face (forehead + canthus) + default inner canthus compensation algorithm value. Both methods deploy compensation algorithms, but the default compensation temperature of the inner canthus will be less than the default compensation temperature of the forehead, generally speaking. The reason is that the temperature of the inner canthus of most people is higher than their forehead, so the temperature compensation is relatively low (i.e., closer to the actual temperature inside the body.) Upper face area Hikvision found that selecting the upper face area plus the default compensation value for the inner canthus resulted in situations when the calculated temperature is lower than the actual temperature. For the Hikvision solution, the forehead is a relatively obvious and easy-to-capture area on an entire face Mr. Li explains: “The reason is that when the camera cannot capture the position of the inner canthus (for example, when a person is walking, or the face is not facing the camera), the camera will automatically capture the temperature of the forehead. Then the result that appears is the sum of the forehead temperature plus the default compensation temperature of the inner canthus, which is lower than the actual temperature of the person being measured. Therefore, errors are prone to occur.” Thermal imaging products But for the Hikvision solution, the forehead is a relatively obvious and easy-to-capture area on an entire face. Also, the default forehead compensation temperature is based on rigorous testing and can also correctly mimic the actual temperature of the person being measured, says Mr. Li. After many test comparisons, considering that the results of forehead temperature measurement are relatively more stable, and in order to avoid the false results from inner canthus temperature measurement, Hikvision chose the forehead temperature measurement approach. “We look forward to bringing thermal imaging products from a niche market where there is a relatively high-end industry application to a mass market and serving more users,” says Mr. Li. Facial recognition terminals Additional application parameters can maximize effectiveness of thermal cameras for measuring body temperature: Positioning and height - All cameras must be mounted appropriately to avoid loss of accuracy and performance. The installation height of each camera must be adjusted according to camera resolution and focal length, and stable installation is needed to avoid errors caused by shaking. Ensuring a ‘one-direction path’ - The detection area must ensure that cameras capture the full faces of all those passing by or stopping, and obstacles should be avoided in the field of view, such as glass doors that block the camera. Adequate start-up and usage - A waiting time of more than 90 minutes is required for preheating, after the initial start-up. Before conducting a thermal scan, people should be given three to five minutes to allow their body temperature to stabilize. When Hikvision MinMoe facial recognition terminals are used, people must stand at a fixed distance, pass one by one, make a short stop, and face the camera directly. Hikvision cameras support efficient group screening, but one-by-one screening is suggested for more accurate results, says Mr. Li. Unstable environmental condition An unstable environmental condition may affect the accuracy of thermal camera systems Environmental factors can impact the accuracy of thermal cameras, and the idea of using a black body is to provide the camera with a reference point that has a stable temperature. The black body is heated to a specific temperature and helps the thermal camera to know how much error is caused by environmental factors in the room, and how the camera should calibrate itself in real time to improve its accuracy. A black body can help increase the temperature measurement accuracy, and the most common improvement is from ±0.5 degrees to ±0.3 degrees. However, it also increases the cost of the installation. In some markets, customers may require black bodies in order to comply with regulatory accuracy requirements. An unstable environmental condition may affect the accuracy of thermal camera systems for measuring temperature. Medical temperature measurement Therefore, Hikvision suggests that the ambient conditions should be met for installation and use. First of all, users should avoid installing devices in hot or changeable environments. All cameras require indoor environments with calm air, consistent temperature and no direct sunlight. Installation should also be avoided in semi-open locations that may be prone to changes in ambient conditions, such as doorways, and there should be enough stable, visible light. All devices should be installed to avoid backlighting, high temperature targets, and reflections in the field of view as far as possible. “We often see the misconception that thermal cameras can replace medical temperature measurement equipment, which is not the case,” says Mr. Li. Rapid preliminary screening “Temperature screening thermographic cameras are designed for the detection of skin-surface temperatures, and the measurement should be conducted to achieve rapid preliminary screening in public areas. It is really important that actual core body temperatures are measured subsequently with clinical measurement devices.”
The first phase in a pioneering smart transport project to transform security, passenger service, and operational management across Berlin’s S-Bahn rail network has officially gone live. Teams based at S-Bahn’s ‘4S’ operational headquarters are now, via the latest developments in Synectics’ Synergy hybrid cloud software platform, able to connect, respond, and collaborate with passengers and staff on-board trains, at stations, and with field personnel working anywhere across the network. Synergy hybrid cloud software The new capabilities, including an innovative mobile application, mark a revolutionary step forward in the way operational command, control, and communications are carried out within urban rail environments. The project, which went live as scheduled on 1 January, is the result of an innovative partnership between S-Bahn Berlin GmbH (a subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn) and command and control solutions expert, Synectics. The two companies’ combined ambition has led to the development of a tailored system that delivers a positive customer experience both now and well into the upcoming decade. Integration with S-Bahn’s proprietary systems Leveraging powerful tools to form custom API gateways, Synergy integrates to S-Bahn’s proprietary systems Leveraging powerful tools to form custom API gateways, Synergy integrates to and interoperates with S-Bahn’s proprietary systems, as well as all third-party technologies, devices, and communication solutions vital to passenger service, safety, and security. This is achieved in real time, and continuously informed by sensor data obtained from integrated systems crucial to operating safe and efficient passenger services. The new Synergy mobile application will enable S-Bahn’s workforce to receive automated task assignments based on their role, skills, and location, and to directly update the system on their delivery of those tasks, the sophisticated level of integration and interoperability achieved is unprecedented. Intelligent digitization of workflows Henning Oelze, Project Manager at S-Bahn, commented “Synergy’s powerful integrations, intelligent digitization of workflows, workforce management capabilities, and computer-aided dispatch functionality combine to deliver a hugely exciting outcome. The platform offers complete visibility of network-wide activity and the ability to coordinate and automate the right response, at the right time, to any requirement.” Henning adds, “It was with huge pleasure that we saw our first trains and Security and Service teams utilizing the new Synergy system, especially given how challenging this last year has been. It really is a revolutionary step forward in our mission to deliver outstanding passenger service, while at the same time, making life much easier for our personnel through the advanced automation of operational processes.” Rapid resource communication and deployment From fulfilling a planned maintenance task to sending people with the most appropriate training to deal with an evolving security or safety issue, Synergy will facilitate the rapid communication, deployment, and appropriate action of different teams. This will equip S-Bahn to process and react to events within pre-defined response times, and to manage its workforce as effectively as possible. The project is scheduled to continue during 2021, with the two organizations building further technical capabilities and driving ahead with continuous improvement. Key enhancements will see extensions to the workforce management functionality and more developments to improve operational efficiency within incident and task management assignments. Smart transport systems standards Some of the software developments driven by this project will have long term implications for the sector" Greg Alcorn, Director, Global Sales & Customer Success at Synectics, said “S-Bahn Berlin is viewed as a technological trail-blazer and we’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with such a well-organized team to deliver the first step in their truly inspirational vision for urban transport.” Greg adds, “Some of the software developments driven by this project will have long term implications for the sector. I have no doubt that there are new standards being set here for smart transport systems of the future.” Future of smart transport operations In addition to the ground-breaking technology used, the project also demonstrates the advances that can be achieved through international collaboration. Henning Oelze stated, “Having such direct access to Synectics’ product development team in the UK and knowing that they understood how agile we needed this solution to be, has made a huge difference." He adds, “They shared our vision for the future of smart transport operations in a major European capital and worked in close partnership with the S-Bahn team, successfully navigating their way through the technical, logistical and cultural challenges of a major international project. The close nature of this collaboration is the reason we have reached this crucial go-live milestone, despite all the hurdles that 2020 put in our way.”
The ten photovoltaic panels for the JUICE mission (JUpiter ICy moons Explorer) are ready. JUICE is the most ambitious mission of the Cosmic Vision space program of the European Space Agency (ESA), for which the Italian Space Agency (ASI) participates with an important contribution. Leonardo photovoltaic panels Airbus, as the prime contractor, is developing and building the JUICE spacecraft. Leonardo will deliver the panels to Airbus Defense and Space Netherlands, which is developing the solar arrays for the interplanetary mission. Even during the COVID-19 emergency, Leonardo guaranteed the continuity of its activities, respecting the timeline of the supply. With the production of the JUICE photovoltaic panels, Leonardo not only confirms, but exceeds its technological leadership that was previously achieved with the Rosetta mission. JUICE’s panels cover a total area of 85 square meters, becoming the largest ever built for an interplanetary mission. JUICE mission JUICE mission, scheduled to launch in 2022, will study Jupiter and its three icy moons, Ganymede, Callisto, and Europa JUICE mission, scheduled to launch in 2022, will study Jupiter and its three icy moons, Ganymede, Callisto, and Europa, which are considered to be of great interest due to the presence of vast oceans beneath their surface. The surface and inner layers will be explored in search of conditions favorable to life. To reach Jupiter, JUICE’s journey will take almost eight years during which the solar panels will guarantee the energy necessary for the on-board instrumentation. At its destination, the probe will be about 780 million km away from the Sun, and will have to operate in extremely critical conditions. Jupiter’s moon missions Jupiter’s distance represented a challenge that required the study and implementation of specific and optimized technologies which are able to operate with temperatures as low as -230 degrees Celsius and in conditions of almost no light (about one twenty-seventh of that arriving on Earth). The constant generation of power is in fact an essential requirement without which the mission would not survive, failing all its objectives. JANUS optical telescope and MAJIS infrared spectrometer For the JUICE mission, in addition to supplying the photovoltaic panels, Leonardo participates in the production of the JANUS optical telescope and the MAJIS infrared spectrometer, both highly technological scientific instruments of great importance to the mission. JANUS is developed under the responsibility of ASI with the contribution and scientific guidance of INAF (National Institute for Astrophysics). MAJIS is developed by the French institute IAS and funded by CNES and ASI. European Service Module The European Service Module, powered by Leonardo's photovoltaic systems, will transport the Orion capsule Activities continue at the Nerviano plant (Milan) with the construction of the photovoltaic panels of the European Service Module that ESA will provide to the Orion shuttle, as a contribution to NASA’s ARTEMIS program for the safe return of man on the moon. The European Service Module, powered by Leonardo's photovoltaic systems, will transport the Orion capsule, guaranteeing the astronauts housed inside the shuttle a safe and comfortable journey. ARTEMIS program Leonardo has already provided the panels for the first two missions of the ARTEMIS program, scheduled for 2021 and 2023, which aim to verify and test the complex integrated transport system between the Earth and the Moon. Furthermore, activities for the solar panels of the third ARTEMIS mission have just begun, the launch of which is scheduled for 2024, and it will bring the next man and first woman back to the lunar soil, more than half a century after the historic 1969 landing. Leonardo has over ten years of expertise in the field of photovoltaic generators and power units, developed by participating in numerous international missions such as: Herschel, Planck, Lisa Pathfinder, GAIA, Aeolus, COSMO-SkyMed, Euclid, ExoMars TGO, Exomars 2022, Meteosat Third Generation, MetOp Second Generation.
An £8.7m visitor centre to open up access to one of the East End’s ‘open-air lungs’ has been completed at a strategic 500-acre Thames Water site. The Walthamstow Wetlands project allows visitors to enjoy and learn about the Walthamstow Reservoirs’ distinctive built and natural heritage, which is unique in London. Because the area includes water treatment stations and other operational sites, it needed protection to separate public areas from CNI zones, for which Thames Water has ordered security fencing through Binns Fencing. Binns have installed ArmaWeave, HiSec and Axiom steel mesh from parent company Zaun around strategic Thames Water assets, while Duo fencing, sliding gates and railings have been included at all main entrances. Oak Habitat gates and post and wire fencing provide a more natural boundary to non-secure areas. The principal contractor of the project was London-based construction company Rooff, a family-run business with a track record stretching back 100 years. The area’s distinctive nature stems from the site’s importance as a historic operational landscape that supplies drinking water to London, and its rich biodiversity, which is of international importance for water birds.The concept is to create a ‘green core’ of naturalized landscape at the heart of the reservoir complex Safe Naturalized Landscape The concept is to create a ‘green core’ of naturalized landscape at the heart of the reservoir complex with a generous pathway through the centre of the site and connecting to the strategic pedestrian and cycle route through the middle of the Lee Valley. The project was designed by architect Witherford Watson Mann and landscape architects KLA, with engineers P3r and TALL, consultants Studio Dekka and collaborating organization Counterculture also involved. The reservoirs’ importance as a potential nature reserve was recognized as early as 1945 by Professor Patrick Abercrombie, who said, “A series of great reservoirs [is] acquiring a charm of [its] own as trees grow round them and on their little islands – they are becoming nature reserves for large numbers of birds and the resort of privileged fisherman.” “These areas are a great open-air lung to the crowded East End – their preservation is essential...Every piece of open land should be welded into a great regional reservation.”
Skomer Island off the Welsh coastmonitors wildlife usingMOBOTIX cameras Over twenty years ago, very few people knew about the hidden, underwater world off Pembrokeshire, on the west coast of Wales. However, in 1990 the creation of Skomer Marine Nature Reserve (MNR) covering the waters off the headland and around Skomer Island, gave the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) a golden opportunity to study and protect this marine environment. Skomer’s waters are famed for their amazing range of underwater marine life. Situated on the boundary where northern and southern species overlap, there is a huge variety of wildlife of all shapes and colours – making it a great place to study and monitor changes in the marine environment. An Environmental Wonderland Many species are studied in detail. These range from sponges to gray seals, and from tiny, colorful sea slugs to graceful, slow-growing seafans, a 120 of which are monitored and photographed every year to study changes in them. Over the last 20 years, King scallops, which are protected from all forms of fishing within the MNR, have increased more than eight fold. Eelgrass, a rare and sensitive habitat which harbours a wealth of wildlife, has increased in area and density. It is protected in the MNR by marker buoys and by providing moorings for visiting boats - eelgrass is easily damaged if anchors are dragged through it. The environment at Skomer has also been identified as Wales‘ only Important Plant Area (IPA) for marine algae, with over 240 species recorded. CCW Marine Conservation Officer for Skomer, Mark Burton said: “Keeping an eye on the Marine Nature Reserve which is only accessible by boat can be a challenge. This is especially tough in rough weather where winds of over 110 mph and waves over 13 metres high have been measured.” Burton’s duties include maintaining the site’s oceanographic monitoring and weather station. CCW collates data on temperature, salinity, turbidity, chlorophyll, PH and oxygen from probes on the seabed of the Skomer MNR which I used as part of a UK wide research project on climate change. The MOBOTIX solution withstands the ever changing weather on Skomer Marine Reserve Officers also need to manage human activity, so that it is in line with the conservation objectives of the site. More than 145,000 people have visited the Marine Nature Reserve exhibition at Martin’s Haven. Add to this more than 40,000 divers have explored the MNR – either for pleasure or to contribute to the survey and monitoring work. “We also need to make sure that illegal fishing does not occur within the protected area but with limited staff, it was felt that a remote, high resolution camera would be a major benefit,” explains Burton. All Weather Capability Essential Based on a requirement for extreme reliability and ability to work in all-weather conditions, CCW selected a MOBOTIX solution from Ecl-ips; a highly regarded Advanced MOBOTIX Partner. The MOBOTIX M24-SEC cameras are installed within a converted coast guard hut on the mainland overlooking the island and provide wide angle coverage across several key locations such as protected scallop beds and wildlife areas.The M24-SEC MOBOTIX cameras offers a higher 30 frames per second capture at megapixel resolutions. The two new cameras each have a 60 degree lens system. Together, the cameras can cover critical areas of the island and estuary from its vantage point in the coast guard hut. Featuring a 64 GB of internal storage capacity, the M24 cameras can ensure that even if a communication link is lost; the island can still be monitored with recording for later analysis.CCW accesses the system via a fiber optic link and all footage is recorded for 10 days. Burton said: “The system also tags movement events and can generate an alert whenever a vessel comes into the area of coverage – this is useful for monitoring any illegal fishing within the area.” The M24 cameras use a decentralized solution that is easy for conservation officers to control "High Definition Protecting Stunning Natural Beauty"The high resolution images produced by the camera allow for accurate identification of objects within the field of vision. The megapixel capability also offers software-based zoom capability without the need for an additional mechanical PTZ enclosure. In common with all MOBOTIX cameras, the installation uses a decentralized concept which places intelligence within the camera. Through decentralization, CCW avoids the need for any additional costly video capture, encoding or storage devices. Conservation Officers can control the cameras using a simple internet browser with all video images viewed from a simple PC or even mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. This technology innovation makes the monitoring process extremely flexible while reducing cost and complexity. The cameras also have two way audio capabilities which allow ad-hoc communication between the mainland and the hut on the island. To date, the cameras have proven extremely reliable and withstood extreme temperature changes and weather conditions without fail. The system was installed by Worcestershire based MOBOTIX partner Ecl-ips, a specialist in delivering environmental and security threat management. “The implementation by the team from Ecl-ips was extremely professional and the cameras have worked well ever since,” Burton adds. The real-time images have been made available to the public through the CCW website and also provide a guide for groups preparing to scuba dive or sail in and around the island. The installation is the first of its kind within a Marine Nature Reserve. The use of this innovative visual technology is helping to raise awareness and protect wildlife.
ISD-Tech has installed 600 channels of surveillance video at over 30 solar farms across the UK For many years Network Video Technologies (NVT), has supplied an unparalleled choice of high-performance and cost-effective solutions for Solar Plant surveillance applications across Europe and America. With the recent introduction of Solar Plants to the UK, British power producers are now reaping the benefits of NVT transmission technology when securing these high-value sites. To date, Integrated Security Design Ltd (ISD-Tech), has installed 600 channels of surveillance video at over 30 solar farms across the UK; gaining an industry-wide reputation for providing high-quality, high-performance CCTV systems in these harsh RFI environments. Based on a common specification, the installations have all featured NVT UTP CCTV Hybrid Video™ technology to provide interference immune high-quality CCTV image transmission, over distances of up to 1.6km (1 mile). Nicky Stokes, MD of ISD-Tech takes up the story: “We first became involved with solar plants when we expanded one of our existing customer’s sites using NVT technology. Since then, we have become known as an industry authority on the subject of solar plant CCTV design and installation. Our in-house design team pride themselves on guiding our customers through the entire installation, from conception, through CAD design, to installation and remote maintenance.” The NVT Advantage Specified by ISD-Tech as an alternative cable medium versus the use of coax, Cat5 UTP is used to provide the cornerstone of their high-performance CCTV video transmission solution. The use of flexible UTP cable permits simple and quick installations, and has helped to minimize engineering time on-site and disruption to site operations - with the associated cost saving and project management benefits this brings. “This is a critical factor at these solar sites,” explains Nicky. “The use of NVT transmission technology has been so successful that it has been included at each site, as part of the authorized technical specification. The NVT product is of such a high-quality that we are happy to include this in all future installations." Economical Performance Providing an economical deployment of NVT technology, the ISD-Tech installations employ NVT NV-214A-M single NVT technology has been integrated at the sites to provide the best of both analog CCTV and digital video transmission solutions channel video transceivers at each static camera, and transmit video via Cat5 UTP to NVT NV-1642 16-Channel StubEQ™ Active Receiver Hubs, connected locally to a digital video recorder (DVR). From the DVR, images are encoded onto a WAN for distribution to a remote control room, which centrally monitors all the solar plant sites 24/7. “This design template is also readily expandable,” continues Nicky. “It’s simple and cost-effective to cater for theaddition of new cameras to cover newly expanded areas of the solar fields, as and when they are required. “Unlike some of the cheaper UTP baluns that many of our installation competitors use, thanks to NVT’s unique ‘built-in’ interference immunity, we are able to install NVT UTP cables in ducting alongside the sites’ main power transmission infrastructure. It’s very reassuring to know that we can rely on NVT products to be totally unaffected by the proximity of huge RFI power sources, and deliver perfect camera images to the control room." Another benefit is that the end-user doesn’t have to pay for expensive separate cable ducting to be installed. “The current flow of each solar field changes throughout the day, posing quite a challenge to video transmission - as high-power outputs are produced by the solar fields at mid day, falling with the onset of evening. This is where the automatic adjustment of camera video signal by NVT DigitalEQ™ technology comes into its own, providing a solution by continuously adjusting signal levels to ensure that the same great image quality is transmitted back to the equipment room - no matter what the available light or electrical conditions.” Best of Both Worlds Solar fields across the UK are monitored by the combined digital and analogue technology from NVT NVT technology has been integrated at the sites to provide the best of both analog CCTV and digital video transmission solutions. High-quality NVT analog camera signals are distributed to an on-site DVR, to afford the best possible quality of recorded images for investigative/evidential purposes. In addition, both live and recorded camera images are encoded for browser-based monitoring. “This means the power provider can secure and protect the solar fields, while also meeting their duty of care responsibilities – ensuring any trespassers can be identified and stopped quickly,” explains Nicky. “Due to the large electrical currents they produce, solar fields can be hazardous places. Our CCTV systems have proven to provide a very effective security and management tool, ensuring only authorized personnel gain site access.” Thanks to the installation expertise of ISD-Tech engineers, NVT UTP CCTV video transmission products are yielding significant savings, superior image quality and consistency of interference free camera video in Solar Plant surveillance systems across the UK. The NVT based CCTV installations have a track-record of providing a flexible, future-proof security and management aid, that can protect infrastructure and capital investment at these cutting-edge power generation facilities. In the future, many more sites will benefit from ISD-Tech’s technical know-how, as the company plans to install the same CCTV system specification at 40 more solar farms across the UK.
Employees access the key control system by scanning their employee ID badge / access card The Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati uses a KeyWatcher® key control and management system by Morse Watchmans to safeguard the keys to the District's vans, bulldozers, cranes, service trucks and cars, and make the keys available to authorized employees whenever they are needed. Six 48-key KeyWatcher cabinets store about 180 keys used by the district's 150 employees to serve wastewater collection needs. Some keys are restricted to individual employees or to small groups, and the keys are stored in the various KeyWatcher cabinets according to the department that uses them. Employees access the key control system by scanning their employee ID badge/access card, which has an embedded RFID chip. “Before the key control system was adopted, keys were stored on a pegboard in the Sewer District with spare keys kept in a box, which was not a good system,” said Rahn A. Wuest, Wastewater Collections (WWC) Supervisor of Cincinnati's Metropolitan Sewer District. “KeyWatcher now makes it easy to access and control keys, providing more convenience for employees and keeping our vehicles and equipment safe and secure.” Each key is attached by a stainless steel locking ring to a SmartKey with an identification chip. SmartKeys fit into key slots in KeyWatcher key control cabinets, which keep track of who removed any key, when it was taken and when it was returned. KeyPro III software tracks the keys and sends emails automatically when a key has not been returned. The software can also limit access to certain keys only to authorized employees. The system can help identify who was driving a vehicle at a certain time, for example, if there is a report of a District vehicle speeding or running a traffic light. With fewer lost keys, there is less need to put spare keys into service. “The installation at Cincinnati's Sewer District demonstrates the value of the KeyWatcher system to improve management and accountability of employees accessing a fleet of vehicles and equipment,” said Fernando Pires, VP Sales and Marketing, Morse Watchmans. “Keeping keys safe and knowing who accesses keys boosts overall efficiency and security at an affordable cost.”
Round table discussion
Environmentalism is a universal consideration in most business sectors in 2016. Whether seeking to provide greener products, or looking for new ways to minimize waste of manufacturing processes, most companies are involved to some degree with environmental concerns. Green has not traditionally been a big driver in the security industry, but there are indications the profile of environmentalism is increasing. We asked this week's Expert Panel: How green (environmentally friendly) is the security industry? How should the industry mean time between failure as a whole (integrators and manufacturers) work to improve the industry’s environmental record?
"Going green" is not a new initiative, but rather, one that businesses and individuals are constantly aware of and continuously making a conscious effort to contribute to. The global population has become increasingly environmentally conscious over the years. Businesses and homeowners alike are investing more in green alternatives for their various needs. Many businesses adopt a green business ethic by ensuring that their products and ways of working are compliant with certain green standards. We asked our panellists for their thoughts on how technology can help keep the security industry green. Let's take a look at their responses.
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