At GSX 2021, in booth #1641, Hanwha Techwin, a global supplier of IP and analog video surveillance solutions, will announce a new touchless network intercom station and a range of network audio products including stylish and highly versatile speakers, a microphone station, analog audio conversion module and audio server for large speaker deployments. The TID-600R network intercom station features a 2MP sensor with Hanwha Techwin’s signature WDR (wide dynamic range) and low light performan...
Hikvision, a global pioneer in delivering high-performance professional security solutions with tremendous value, is introducing a highly versatile standalone cellphone video surveillance system that combines solar power and cellular connectivity, ideal for remote location applications. Designed specifically for surveilling remote areas where power and Wi-Fi connectivity are scarce, the all-in-one ColorVu Solar Powered Security Camera is ideal for use on oil fields, farms, utility sites, remote...
Johnson Controls, the global pioneer for smart, healthy, and sustainable buildings has furthered its leadership in sustainable finance following the completion of its first Sustainability-Linked Bond offering of $500 million in ten-year senior notes. The offering of the Sustainability-Linked Bond conforms with the company’s recently published integrated green, social, and sustainability-linked finance framework. The publication of an integrated sustainable finance framework and issuance o...
Zenitel, the provider of Intelligent Communications solutions, announces a new Center of Excellence (CoE) in the Safety & Security market in the EMEA region. This role will be filled by Elbo Technology. Elbo Technology, based in technologically vibrant Eindhoven, has been a distributor and knowledge partner for Zenitel in the field of critical communication for almost 25 years. With this long-term cooperation, there is an intensive and valuable collaboration. For Zenitel, Elbo makes an impo...
The modern meaning of surveillance has reshaped itself. It is more than just capturing or recording the footage or monitoring the premises continuously. Enterprises expect video surveillance devices to assist them in decision-making. Sufficing the same need, Matrix has developed their range of surveillance devices for modern enterprises that encompass smart features to help enterprises mitigate the threats in real-time. Matrix offers their Professional Series Bullet IP cameras, a compact yet po...
ProdataKey (PDK), manufacturer of the cloud access control platform built for mobile allows for "custom fields" within the interface of its pdk.io software. Custom fields increase PDK's solutions' overall functionality by allowing administrators to include a wide range of pertinent data associated with each user. Address, location, floor, unit number, or any other field can be added to the pdk.io user database, providing more ways to identify employees and tenants accurately and categorize them...
The sensor solution provider HENSOLDT is supplying a mobile system for tactical radio reconnaissance to two NATO countries. A corresponding order worth a two-digit million Euro sum has now been signed. The system for monitoring and analyzing enemy radio traffic includes digital broadband receivers, compact direction finders, and high-performance software for real-time signal evaluation. The core elements of the system are integrated into armored vehicles or designed to be portable so that troops can be supported directly in the theater of operations and detect threats at an early stage. Mobile and robust system "Responsive and accurate analysis and classification of radio traffic are essential for a complete tactical picture of the situation," says Celia Pelaz, Chief Strategy Officer and Head of the Spectrum Dominance Division at HENSOLDT. "Our mobile and robust system provides the assurance that troops can rely on the support of the most powerful COMINT techniques in the field." HENSOLDT has been active in the electromagnetic spectrum dominance market for decades. The company has developed COMINT and ELINT sensors and provides integrated systems capable of reconnaissance and jamming to the German Armed Forces and other NATO countries.
Surveillance monitoring for small and medium-sized sites could be a tough challenge at night. Options are often limited to day/night cameras and low-light cameras (sometimes referred to as Starlight cameras). These devices continue to provide color images when lighting levels reduce up to a point but switch to black and white when they deteriorate further. But to maintain color images in low light conditions with these cameras, other aspects of the image – such as noise and definition – are often compromised. Cameras trying to maintain color images at night often struggle when there is movement in the scene, or when there’s a wide dynamic range (the difference between the lightest and darkest parts of a scene). So how to ensure clear color images at night? Here are 3 tips to do that: 1. Use a dual-lens camera Various types of low-light cameras are gradually becoming in demand. According to an IHS Markit report in 2019, the number of video cameras equipped with advanced low-light functionality was set to rise significantly, from 4.75 million in 2015 to 51 million by 2022. A dual-lens camera, as its name indicates, offers two lenses: one to capture lightness information, the other to capture color information. Dahua Full-colour 2.0 series also offers cameras with other intelligent features such as the varifocal lens and 4K Dahua Full-colour 2.0 The upgraded Dahua Full-colour 2.0 network camera series is equipped with such specifications. With pixel-level frame-by-frame mapping, the dual-lens cameras of this series present high image definition and vivid colors even when the supplementary white light is off, thus reducing light pollution and attraction of insects that can adversely affect the monitoring of the scene. What’s more, these cameras also feature the AA (Active Alignment) process, which perfectly aligns the incoming light with the sensor. Full-color cameras are available in dome, bullet, box, and eyeball formats. Aside from dual-lens cameras, the Dahua Full-colour 2.0 series also offers cameras with other intelligent features such as the varifocal lens and 4K resolution. 2. Use IR and white light together IR light and white lights are common cameras supplementary lights. Depending on how you use them, it can relatively affect the quality of images in low-light environments or during nighttime. Nevertheless, excessive use of white light contributes to light pollution, especially in urban areas. Dahua’s TiOC 2.0 Dahua’s TiOC (three-in-one camera) 2.0 – due to be launched in September – is equipped with Smart Dual Illuminators, which allow users to flexibly switch between IR mode and White Light mode (also referred to as Full-colour mode) based on their monitoring requirements. Default illumination is provided by the built-in IR illuminator. When a person enters the monitoring area, the white light is triggered and Full-colour mode is activated. When a target leaves the area, the LED turns off and the IR illuminator turns back on, significantly reducing light pollution in the area. TiOC 2.0 cameras also have the addition of VoiceCatcher technology that enhances sound quality and pickup Moreover, powered by OPC (Optical Path Compensation) technology, the TiOC 2.0 cameras can correct the angle of refraction of different light rays, allowing Dahua IPCs to output brighter and clearer black & white images with an F1.0 large-aperture lens. It also has the addition of VoiceCatcher technology which is a dual mic array that enhances sound quality and pickup performance. Cameras in the TiOC 2.0 series come in 8MP, 5MP, or 4MP versions. 3. Use automatic tracking Automatic tracking is an innovative feature that transforms manually controlled PTZ cameras into automated tracking systems that keep a moving target in focus and centered in the frame. It automatically follows/tracks the target within its field of view. Dahua’s TiOC 2.0 with Auto Tracking 3.0 The TiOC 2.0 series is equipped with Auto Tracking 3.0. It is based on a deep-learning algorithm using the camera’s pan, tilt, and zoom functions to automatically track pre-defined moving targets even in environments with low illumination or during nighttime. It provides a smooth tracking process through the deep fusion of intelligent and focusing algorithms and can track targets up to a distance of 870 meters. With the Auto Tracking 2.0 algorithm as its foundation, the requirements for the tracking size of the target are further reduced, making the target size smaller and the tracking distance longer. Conclusion Difficulties in night-time monitoring have been alleviated, thanks to continuous technological innovations that made color monitoring in low-light conditions possible. Dahua Full-colour cameras – whether standalone or as part of the TiOC series – can deliver enhanced images and surveillance whatever the time of day or night. By utilizing low-light cameras with dual-lens, smart dual illuminators, and automatic tracking, users do not have to put up with poor, unusable images at night, making these devices ideal for small and medium-sized application scenarios such as villas, parking lots, and retail shops.
Solis Energy Inc., a manufacturer of outdoor power systems for the industrial automation and control, transportation, telecommunication, security, and government markets, announced that the company will be showcasing its wide range of power solutions at GSX 2021 taking place on September 27th – 29th at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL. As one of the largest security trade shows in the world, GSX offers an event that unites global security professionals and delivers the very latest in cutting-edge technology, and a chance to learn from industry pioneers. GSX sets the stage for Solis Energy to provide the security industry with a display and overview of its power supply solutions, including the Solar Power Plant, Continuous Power Bridge, and Outdoor UPSs. Solis continues to deliver value to its customers by joining forces with pioneering solution providers, such as Siklu Communications, Axis Communications, Code Blue, and Cradlepoint, who will be present at Solis’s booth #1769. Lightpole Power Taps Some of its power solutions include solar generators, outdoor battery backup systems, and a suite of power management components including PoE injectors, DC to DC converters, and Lightpole Power Taps. Solis Energy has been committed to developing innovative, reliable products that provide customers with flexible solutions Solis Energy products are made to last, and installations can be found on all habitable continents and climates ranging from mild to harsh, ensuring that critical energy is running to security systems even in the most extreme conditions. For sixteen years, Solis Energy has been committed to developing innovative, reliable products that provide customers with flexible solutions that take control of their outdoor power requirements. Field proven solutions “After the previous, unusual year we have all encountered, Solis Energy is excited to be exhibiting alongside our valued technology partners at GSX – especially with the show taking place in our own backyard in Florida,” states Robert Reynolds, President of Solis Energy. “We’re looking forward to a tremendous event where we can meet face-to-face and share the latest technology of the security world with some of the best in the business.” Attendees can stop by booth #1769, to see the latest power solutions and discuss field proven solutions with its team of experts. Solis has achieved great success in several city-wide, large-scale security and surveillance projects working with Siklu, Axis, and other technology partners. The company continues to set the bar high by delivering complete, field proven solutions to customers across a broad range of vertical markets and offers solutions that are high quality, durable, versatile, and scalable.
With innovation in its DNA, Axis Communications has been at the forefront of breakthroughs in video surveillance since developing the first network video camera in 1996. Also responsible for introducing the world’s first HDTV-compliant cameras and video encoders, Axis delivers hundreds of leading-edge products for security, safety, and operational efficiency. As part of the company’s pioneering approach, Axis often teams with manufacturing solution providers to keep pace with aggressive growth worldwide. Challenges of meeting dynamic market demand The demand to ramp high-volume manufacturing in the European Union led Axis to Jabil, a manufacturing solutions provider with more than 260,000 employees across 100 locations in 30 countries. Axis also needed help navigating market volatility through greater supply chain intelligence and real-time procurement insights. Moreover, Axis was keen to advance its path to a circular economy. Solutions for ramping high-volume, precision manufacturing Entire product lifecycle needs are met at highly automated manufacturing, assembly, and logistical facilities Jabil offered Axis an ideal EU manufacturing location at its 70,000 square-foot facilities in Kwidzyn, Poland near Axis’ headquarters in Sweden. Entire product lifecycle needs are met at highly automated manufacturing, assembly, and logistical facilities in Poland, Russia, and the U.S. A cross-functional team with deep knowledge of optics, electronics, and manufacturing support accelerated prototyping, new product introductions, and escalating manufacturing demands. Jabil applies in-line robotics, a novel Cleanroom approach, and industrial automation to drive high-volume precision manufacturing while reducing costs. Jabil’s dedicated WorkCell model offers expert support across the entire product lifecycle. Jabil builds optical modules that meet stringent specifications and performance requirements. Supply chain and procurement experts alleviate market constraints during times of extreme market volatility by offering new sourcing and component redesign recommendations. Benefits of trusted partnership and successful collaboration Axis and Jabil have redesigned carton packaging using sustainable materials that can be sourced locally Axis has confidence that Jabil can assure delivery of top-quality products anywhere in the world, even as production volumes continue to grow. When one of the company’s biggest customers tripled production volume within two months, Jabil increased technical and manufacturing capacity while its supply chain team secured the additional components needed to ensure success. This long-term partnership even includes logistical services from Jabil’s Memphis, Tenn. facility. During COVID-19, the two partners turned to AR/VR to keep projects on track. This includes about 40 new product introductions each year while maintaining sufficient component supplies to grow the business by 15% year-over-year. Moreover, the partners are working together to elevate sustainability efforts by minimizing energy consumption, reducing landfill waste, and increasing recycling. To that end, Axis and Jabil have redesigned carton packaging using sustainable materials that can be sourced locally. Looking ahead, the partners are poised to drive Axis’ business growth in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and other parts of the world. Call-out quote “Axis a company is known for quality--we have a great quality reputation in the market,” says Per Ädelroth, VP of Operations, Axis Communications. “We depend on Jabil to actually sustain that and make it come true as we manufacture higher and higher volumes.”
The South German industrial camera manufacturer IDS Imaging Development Systems GmbH was able to exceed industry expectations in the first half of 2021. Instead of the 7% increase in the turnover forecast by the VDMA for the machine vision industry, the company has so far generated more than double this growth. The camera manufacturer from Obersulm expects consistently high growth until the end of 2021. The positive order situation and the strong development of foreign business give the camera manufacturer every reason to do so, despite the challenging procurement situation. High-Volume applications Compared to the same period in the previous year, the increase in turnover was particularly strong in North America. The company bases its growth forecast for the VISION year 2021 primarily on the new IDS NXT cameras with artificial intelligence, as well as on the high demand in the 3D segment. New products, such as the cost-effective, industrial-grade Ensenso S, will explicitly complement the IDS product range in these areas. IDS is also expanding the uEye portfolio with new sensors and a new small C-mount housing camera IDS is also expanding the uEye portfolio with new sensors and a new small C-mount housing camera – especially in the low-cost range for, particularly price-sensitive and high-volume applications. On the software side, the new SDK IDS peak with many modern programming interfaces and new convenience functions promises real added value for both uEye and uEye+ users. "We are developing innovative products and platforms in order to continually set new impulses for our customers and partners with new powerful solutions," explains Managing Director Jan Hartmann. Embedded vision solutions By establishing its own development unit in Serbia last year, the industrial camera manufacturer has already paved the way for even more active AI research and development. “Cameras and artificial intelligence, a combination that allows IDS to reinvent itself and contribute to shaping the future." In the area of tension between increasing demand, high standards of efficiency and sustainability as well as security of supply, embedded vision solutions with AI – such as IDS NXT – are becoming more and more important. With the online platform visionbay, IDS has now also opened a virtual marketplace for image processing with AI. There, users can access the know-how of experts in the field of artificial intelligence, get access to complete image processing solutions, and thus save valuable development time.
Group337, a team of experts focused on activating the companies, brands, and people in the security industry through insights, intuition, and ideas announced their partnership with Momentum Security Training, an online, context-based education platform serving the physical security industry and its users. Members of Group337’s industry community group, The Inside Community, will receive discounts and exclusive offers through the collaboration. Physical security training A division of MxV Consulting, LLC, Momentum Security Training offers flexible and modular physical security training focused on new technologies and best practices for integrators, manufacturers, and end-users. Courses are led by seasoned security experts who have been hands-on in the field for decades. The real-world knowledge students receive allows them to walk away with safer practices, better industry knowledge, and overall technical skills. Training and certification Group337 is excited to bring education and certifications to the community" "Group337 is excited to collaborate with Momentum Security Training to bring education and certifications to our community," said Lee Odess, Founder, and CEO of Group337. “We recognize the value training and certification brings to not only young professionals in our industry but anyone looking to expand their knowledge and expertise.” “Partnering with Group337 was an easy decision; they are equally passionate about education in the security industry as we are. They have done a fantastic job with providing industry research and building a community,” added Principal and CEO of MxV Consulting, Chris Wilson. “We are looking forward to working with Group337, and the community, to move the security industry forward by bringing value-added education to security professionals.”
Cloud-based technology can reduce IT costs, streamline application management and make infrastructure more flexible and scalable. So, it’s no surprise that cloud video surveillance solutions (also known as video surveillance as a service or VSaaS) are gaining momentum in a big way. In fact, according to recent reports, the VSaaS market is forecasted to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 10.4% by 2025. But some company owners may wonder – what services does a cloud model deliver and is such a solution right for my business? This article aims to help you determine what cloud video surveillance solution is right for your business and the benefits you can enjoy if you decide to deploy a VSaaS solution. Full cloud-based recording vs cloud-managed First, a bit of clarification on cloud video surveillance models, as definitions can vary from provider to provider. A full cloud-based recording solution is one in which both video recording and management are done offsite (for example, cameras streaming directly to the cloud). While this model can be a good option for some, many large enterprise businesses simply don’t have the bandwidth capacity or network resources required to upload all of their videos to the cloud. Even with the bandwidth capacity, this can be a cost-prohibitive model when hundreds or thousands of IP cameras are involved. A full cloud-based recording solution is one in which both video recording and management are done offsite But that doesn’t mean enterprise businesses can’t take advantage of cloud-managed video surveillance. With this solution, video recording and storage happen on your premises (with network video recorders (NVRs) or a video management system (VMS)), but the video management aspect is handled in the cloud by a third-party provider, usually as a subscription-based service. The provider hosts the central video server overseeing your on-premises devices. Some providers also allow you to back up portions of the video to the cloud, so you can store and share video evidence or select clips needed for investigations. This model combines the performance benefits of local recording with the convenience and cost savings of the cloud. Centralized video surveillance solution Perhaps the greatest benefit of using this type of cloud-managed video surveillance solution is centralization. Because all of your devices are centrally managed in the cloud, you don’t have to travel to a distant location to update a recorder or camera’s software – it’s all done remotely by the provider from a central location. This can save you both time and money, especially since it’s necessary to consistently monitor the configuration settings on cameras and NVRs to ensure they’re correct and functioning properly. If your hardware malfunctions and it isn’t detected immediately, instances of lost video can occur. And business owners know that losing video evidence of theft or fraud could have significant consequences to the efficiency and effectiveness of an investigation. Round the clock monitoring Some providers monitor for changes in cameras’ field of view, so if a camera is blocked or moved, you’ll be alerted With a cloud-managed model, you can rest assured that if a camera goes down or another technical issue arises, the provider will know and will handle it immediately so you can avoid unnecessary truck rolls, which can be costly. Some providers will even monitor for changes in your cameras’ field of view, so if a camera is blocked or moved, you’ll be alerted right away. This type of around-the-clock monitoring eliminates your need for an in-house data center and the IT staff necessary to maintain the video system. This is particularly important if you don’t have the infrastructure or the personnel to host your own video networking equipment. You can also save time with the deployment of your video surveillance solution since your provider will get your system up and running quickly. There’s no need to worry about setting up or configuring the central server or any application software – it’s all taken care of by your provider. Flexible and cost-effective In many cloud-managed solutions, you can also skip the large upfront capital cost of a video surveillance investment and pay a monthly fee for all of these services. This is particularly helpful if it’s difficult for your organization to make large capital investments. You may or may not have to invest in onsite devices (cameras and NVRs), depending on the provider you choose. Some providers will allow you to finance your hardware, while others will want you to purchase it upfront. Many cloud providers also offer robust web clients for viewing video and conducting investigations remotely Many cloud providers also offer robust web clients for viewing video and conducting investigations remotely. These do not require any local downloads, which saves you time and money by avoiding the need for additional IT resources. It also alleviates worrying about whether or not you have the latest version, as the clients are automatically updated. And if you don’t want to spend a lot of time on video analysis, some cloud-managed models offer predefined reports on what’s most important to you. For example, a list of potentially suspicious transactions matched with video – so you can quickly scan to investigate. Getting the right solution Determining whether a cloud-managed video surveillance solution is right for your business is a big decision involving many factors, including your business’s size, bandwidth, and network infrastructure, and overall budget for physical security. By considering the points above, the hope is that you can more easily determine which model is best for your business.
Access control and management of trusted identities are the building blocks of security, safety, and site management policies for many businesses and organizations. The current pandemic has compounded this with the introduction of new policies and regulations, particularly around social distancing and contact tracing. Most organizations will have some form of legacy access control in place, ranging from the most simplistic options, such as locks and keys, to technology-based systems. The issue with legacy systems of any type is that risks, just like technology, evolve. What was secure, convenient, and efficient a few years ago is often found wanting as the threat landscape changes. The standards governing the development and testing of physical access control systems (PACS) have also evolved to improve security and product interoperability. An example is the Open Supervised Device Protocol (OSDP), introduced 10 years ago as an alternative to the antiquated and vulnerable Clock-and-Data and Wiegand protocols. However, when it comes to planning infrastructure upgrades or implementing new tools, businesses must carry out due diligence to ensure the solutions are future-proof and deliver the expected level of security. Vulnerabilities and challenges In the early 1980s, Clock-and-Data and Wiegand protocols were widely adopted as the de-facto standard for interoperability between access control readers and physical access controllers. Those de-facto standards were later formalized and adopted into industry standards by the Security Industry Association in the 1990s. Wiegand is unencrypted and unable to protect from “man in the middle” attacks and vulnerabilities There were weaknesses, though, Wiegand is unencrypted and unable to protect from “man in the middle” attacks and vulnerabilities from the reader to the controller. Not only that, but Wiegand delivers limited range options and is operationally inefficient. It is also easy to target via its learnable language and a host of hacking devices available via online sources. Furthermore, the retrofitting installation alongside a legacy system is complicated for integrators and expensive for organizations, as most readers require dedicated home-run wiring. Extensive wiring on a large-scale project, such as a school or corporate campus, results in considerable — often prohibitive — costs for the installation of a PACS. Legacy access control protocol Despite the well-publicized vulnerabilities and weaknesses, Wiegand is still one of the most common protocols in legacy access control, with estimates indicating it is used in more than 90 percent of installed systems. This not only presents issues about physical security but also raises concerns relating to the protection of personal data. Access control systems not only contain information about who can and cannot use certain doors. OSDP is a communication standard Modern systems include a wide range of personal data, ranging from qualifications and certifications of individuals, home contact details, and even medical conditions or HR and employment information. With the potential fines associated with GDPR breaches, companies need to take this concern seriously. These weaknesses pushed the security industry to adopt a new protocol: Open Supervised Device Protocol (OSDP). This access control communications standard was developed by Mercury Security (now part of HID Global) and HID Global in 2008, and donated, free of intellectual property, to the Security Industry Association (SIA) to improve interoperability among access control and security products. Since then, it has been adopted as a standard by SIA, becoming the first secure, bidirectional reader/controller protocol to be governed by a major standards body in the security industry. In 2020 OSDP reached an additional milestone in becoming an International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standard. Why implement OSDP as a standard? OSDP is the only protocol that is secure and open for communication between readers and controllers The growth of networked devices, such as video and access control products, has led to an increased demand for converged solutions. Businesses and organizations recognize the value of implementing an integrated solution to enhance security and add value to technology investment. OSDP is the only protocol that is secure and open for communication between readers and controllers and is also being widely adopted by industry-leading reader and controller manufacturers. It is an evolving, ‘living standard,’ making it a safer, more robust, future-proof option for governing physical access control systems. OSDP offers important benefits: 1) Increased security Implementing OSDP standards can increase security, as OSDP with Secure Channel Protocol (SCP) supports AES-128 encryption that is required in U.S. federal government applications. Additionally, OSDP constantly monitors wiring to protect against tampering, removing the guesswork since the encryption and authentication are predefined. 2) Bidirectional communication Early on, communication protocols such as Wiegand were unidirectional, with external card readers sending information one way to a centralized access control platform. OSDP has transformed the ability for information to be collected, shared, and acted upon with the addition of bidirectional communication for configuration, status monitoring, tampering, and malfunction detection, and other valuable functions. In fact, OSDP is the only open, non-proprietary, bidirectional, secure protocol for communication between card reader and physical access controller. 3) Open and interoperable OSDP adds new technology that enhances its ability to protect incoming and outgoing data collection OSDP supports IP communications and point-to-point serial interfaces, enabling customers to flexibly enhance system functionality as needs change and new threats emerge. They also can proactively add new technology that enhances their ability to protect incoming and outgoing data collection through a physical access control system. 4) Reduced installation costs OSDP’s use of two wires (as compared to a potential of 11 wires with Wiegand) allows for multi-drop installation, supervised connections to indicate reader malfunctions, and scalability to connect more field devices. Daisy-chaining accommodates many readers connected to a single controller, eliminating the need to run home-run wiring for each reader, and the use of a four-conductor cable achieves up to 10x longer distances between reader and controller than Wiegand while also powering the reader and sending/receiving data. 5) User friendly OSDP gives credential holders greater ease of use, with audio and visual feedback such as colored lights, audible beeps, and the ability to display alerts on the reader. For security administrators, managing and servicing OSDP-enabled readers also becomes increasingly convenient, as OSDP-enabled readers can be remotely configured from network-connected locations. Users can poll and query readers from a central location, eliminating the cost and time to physically visit and diagnose malfunctioning devices. Unlimited application enhancements OSDP streamlines installations and upgrades while saving organizations the expense of replacing readers OSDP supports advanced smartcard technology applications, including PKI/FICAM and biometrics, and other enhanced authentication protocols used in applications that require Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) compliance and interactive terminal capabilities. Audio-visual user feedback mechanisms provide a rich, user-centric access control environment. OSDP offers advantages for users, administrators, and integrators, alike. It adds security and real-world efficiencies, and its interoperability ensures that organizations can use systems from numerous manufacturers as they invest in infrastructure that maximizes the protection of critical data. For our part, HID Global’s range of HID Signo readers is OSDP verified, ensuring they offer the intended interoperability and security for secure bidirectional communication and provide an easy migration from Wiegand devices. In a campus environment, OSDP streamlines installations and upgrades while saving organizations the expense of replacing readers if a new access control solution is implemented. There are also service and maintenance benefits as OSDP encourages continuous monitoring of system uptime and allows for remote configuration of -- or upgrades to -- a reader. Cost savings upon system upgrade Integrators can also capitalize on the introduction of OSDP by encouraging open standards, which can, in turn, help them build new customer relationships and win more projects. Although upgrading to access control systems that adhere to OSDP standards is a significant initiative, the range of benefits outweighs the cost of upgrading. Increased security coupled with business efficiencies adds value for those administering the system and a high level of interoperability ensures users can deploy systems from numerous third-party manufacturers. Integrators who understand the benefits of OSDP can also help their customers support both current and future technology requirements. When a site’s needs change, OSDP offers significant cost savings as the open functionality makes adding new devices easier and reduces the expense of requiring all readers to be replaced if a new solution is installed. Businesses and organizations transitioning to OSDP will also enhance value in terms of operational costs such as servicing and maintenance.
Amongst the many negative consequences of the pandemic is a rise in violent and abusive behavior across society. Health workers have experienced it on a regular basis. So too have police officers and public transport workers. Unfortunately, violence and abuse towards shop workers is also endemic in British society. To address this problem which, in truth, has been on the rise since long before the emergence of COVID-19, we need better deterrents. The ability to prosecute these offenses is one such deterrent, but just as important is the ability to deescalate situations before they spill over into unacceptable or unlawful behavior. Major retail customers In both instances, organizations of all sizes are now recognizing that the answer could involve greater use of rapidly advancing body worn camera technology. Andy Marsh, the Chief Constable of Avon and Somerset Police, is one of the police officers responsible for introducing body worn cameras to the UK police force, where they are now in widespread use. Andy Marsh is one of the police officers responsible for introducing body worn cameras to the UK police force He explains that “The reason the majority of people don’t speed or drink-drive is that rational human beings weigh up the risk and consequences of breaking the law and getting caught. Body worn cameras help provide appropriate ‘desistance’, especially where there are forward-facing screens so the person interacting with the wearer can see themselves and their behavior.” Evidence shows that if a forward-facing camera is switched on before the intervention becomes hostile, it will generally lead to a de-escalation – as often as 90% of the time, according to one of our major retail customers. Digital evidence investigations Only a tiny handful of abusive incidents ever translate into arrests and prosecutions. A key issue is a lack of clear evidence – how to get past the usual impasse of one person’s word against the other. Body worn cameras break the deadlock and allow organizations to report incidents to the police with confidence, knowing that they will lead to action. Marsh suggests that “We usually see an earlier admission, an earlier guilty plea and a more appropriate sentence, where body worn camera footage is in play.” The technology has come on in leaps and bounds in recent years. For example, it’s now possible to record high-definition footage on a lightweight device that’s barely the size of a palm. And it’s not just about the evidence organizations gather themselves. Many police forces are looking at ways to make it easier for businesses and the public to collaborate on digital evidence investigations. Body worn cameras This is good for the victims of crime because it means we get the evidence more quickly" “We’ve created an online crime portal in Avon and Somerset which people can use to pass digital evidence and material to us without an officer having to attend their premises. This is good for the victims of crime because it means we get the evidence more quickly and can take action more swiftly to resolve that issue,” adds Marsh. Our body worn cameras can now even support facial recognition thanks to new, smart AI on the devices themselves, which can scan and process faces within a three-meter distance against a pre-defined database of people (which we call a watchlist). Any matches trigger alerts or additional camera activity such as recording and streaming, while the facial recognition data of people not on the watchlist itself is not recorded or saved to assuage privacy concerns. Similar criminal behavior Where could this technology come in handy? Well, staff at gambling venues or in-store retail workers could undoubtedly benefit from the ability to quickly spot known fraudsters or addicts who have requested that venues refuse their custom. Stewards at mass sporting events could play a key role in helping to identify people who have been banned from attending. The primary reason for using body worn cameras is to increase the safety of frontline workers The primary reason for using body worn cameras is to increase the safety of frontline workers, deescalating confrontations and limiting the use of force. AI-powered facial recognition can also serve this purpose by helping them make better-informed choices about how to handle specific situations. For example, it is a massive advantage to police officers on the beat to understand that the person they are dealing with may have a history of similar criminal behavior. Facial recognition technology But it’s also an advantage within retail, where aggressive incidents are on the rise and staff need all the help they can get to determine what an appropriate response should be to a particular customer incident. In fact, extensive consultation with our retail, police, transport and gambling customers indicates that introducing facial recognition technology to body worn cameras could be instrumental, not just in helping to prevent crime, but in tracking down vulnerable and missing people too. Of course, facial recognition technology has to be balanced against the need to protect the privacy of ordinary citizens. Video recording using body worn cameras has to be done proportionately – the same is true for the use of facial recognition technology. The technology also has to be compliant with GDPR, Data Protection, the Information Commissioners recommendations and so on. Positive working environment Violent and abusive incidents affect everyone in the immediate vicinity and create a culture of fear Importantly, it should be for a specific, proportionate and justifiable reason which, of course, means it should never be used for indiscriminate mass surveillance. Every organization using this technology must remember that a facial recognition system match is not proof of someone’s identity, but rather, an indication of likelihood to help inform the user rather than dictate the course of action. Violent and abusive incidents affect everyone in the immediate vicinity and create a culture of fear and apprehension. This is why it’s so important to get on top of the problem – both on a societal and at an organizational level. Body worn cameras have a vital role to play, as an evidence-gathering tool and as a deterrent that empowers the wearer and creates a more positive working environment. Deterring unlawful behavior One of the critical roles these cameras play is in staff training, providing real-world video evidence that can be used to educate and upskill workers across a variety of industries. Society’s problem with abusive and violent behavior cannot be solved by technology alone. But with exceptional quality camera footage now a reality, and the possibility of AI technology at the device level in real-time, body worn cameras will only get better at deterring unlawful behavior and helping to protect hardworking frontline staff. Alasdair Field is CEO of video technology provider Reveal, which works with UK police forces and major brands such as Matalan, JD Sports and Boots to help them improve staff safety, deescalate confrontations and reduce violent and abusive incidents.
Growth is accelerating in the smart cities market, which will quadruple in the next four years based on 2020 numbers. Top priorities are resilient energy and infrastructure projects, followed by data-driven public safety and intelligent transportation. Innovation in smart cities will come from the continual maturation of relevant technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), fifth-generation telecommunications (5G) and edge-to-cloud networking. AI and computer vision (video analytics) are driving challenges in security and safety, in particular, with video management systems (VMSs) capturing video streams and exposing them to various AI analytics. Adoption of disruptive technologies “Cities are entering the critical part of the adoption curve,” said Kasia Hanson, Global Director, Partner Sales, IOT Video, Safe Cities, Intel Corp. “They are beginning to cross the chasm to realize their smart city vision. Cities are taking notice and have new incentives to push harder than before. They are in a better position to innovate.” “Safety and security were already important market drivers responsible for adoption of AI, computer vision and edge computing scenarios,” commented Hanson, in a presentation at the Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS) 2021. She added: “2020 was an inflection point when technology and the market were ripe for disruption. COVID has accelerated the adoption of disruptive technologies in ways we could not have predicted last year.” Challenges faced by cities Spending in the European Union on public order and safety alone stood at 1.7% of GDP in 2018 Providing wide-ranging services is an expanding need in cities of all sizes. There are currently 33 megacities globally with populations over 10 million. There are also another 4,000 cities with populations over 100,000 inhabitants. Challenges for all cities include improving public health and safety, addressing environmental pressures, enabling mobility, improving quality of life, promoting economic competitiveness, and reducing costs. Spending in the European Union on public order and safety alone stood at 1.7% of GDP in 2018. Other challenges include air quality – 80% of those living in urban areas are exposed to air quality levels that exceed World Health Organization (WHO) limits. Highlighting mobility concerns is an eye-opening statistic from Los Angeles in 2017: Residents spent an average of 102 hours sitting in traffic. Smart technology “The Smart City of Today can enable rich and diverse use cases,” says Hanson. Examples include AI-enabled traffic signals to help reduce air pollution, and machine learning for public safety such as real-time visualization and emergency response. Public safety use cases include smart and connected outdoor lighting, smart buildings, crime prevention, video wearables for field agents, smart kiosks, and detection of noise level, glass breaks, and gunshots. Smart technology will make indoor spaces safer by controlling access to a building with keyless and touchless entry. In the age of COVID, systems can also detect face mask compliance, screen for fever, and ensure physical distancing. 2020 was an inflection point when technology and the smart cities market were ripe for disruption, Kasia Hanson told the MIPS 2021 audience. Video solutions Video workloads will provide core capabilities as entertainment venues reopen after the pandemic. When audiences attend an event at a city stadium, deep learning and AI capabilities analyze customer behaviors to create new routes, pathways, signage and to optimize cleaning operations. Personalized digital experiences will add to the overall entertainment value. In the public safety arena, video enables core capabilities such as protection of people, assets, and property, emergency response, and real-time visualization, and increased situational awareness. Video also provides intelligent incident management, better operational efficiency, and faster information sharing and collaboration. Smart video strategy Intel and Milestone provide video solutions across many use cases, including safety and security Video at the edge is a key element in end-to-end solutions. Transforming data from various point solutions into insights is complicated, time-consuming, and costly. Cities and public venues are looking for hardware, software, and industry expertise to provide the right mix of performance, capabilities, and cost-effectiveness. Intel’s smart video strategy focuses around its OpenVINO toolkit. OpenVINO, which is short for Open Visual Inference and Neural network Optimization, enables customers to build and deploy high-performing computer vision and deep learning inference applications. Intel and Milestone partnership – Video solutions “Our customers are asking for choice and flexibility at the edge, on-premises and in the cloud,” said Hansen in her presentation at the virtual conference. “They want the choice to integrate with large-scale software packages to speed deployment and ensure consistency over time. They need to be able to scale computer vision. Resolutions are increasing alongside growth in sensor installations themselves. They have to be able to accommodate that volume, no matter what causes it to grow.” As partners, Intel and Milestone provide video solutions across many use cases, including safety and security. In effect, the partnership combines Intel’s portfolio of video, computer vision, inferencing, and AI capabilities with Milestone’s video management software and community of analytics partners. Given its complex needs, the smart cities market is particularly inviting for these technologies.
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.”
BriefCam, the industry’s provider of video content analytics solutions announced that its software platform is in place at the National Mall as part of a $3.3+ million technology donation led by systems integration leader Convergint. By making surveillance video footage searchable, actionable and quantifiable, BriefCam can help the National Park Service (NPS) and the United States Park Police (USPP) ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for visitors to the National Mall’s monuments, museums, and parks. BriefCam and ten other vendors have joined forces to help the National Park Service (NPS) meet the challenge of creating a positive, family-friendly environment while maintaining safety and security. Optimizing visitor experience “We very much appreciate BriefCam’s role in this technology donation designed to help us optimize National Mall operations, safety, and visitor experience,” said Deputy Chief Mark Adamchik, Commander of the Field Operations Division for the United States Park Police. By providing real-time alerts and the ability to search and filter video, BriefCam can help the NPS respond with agility, investigate quickly, and make informed decisions that drive safety and security, including: Preparing Sites for Increased Traffic: The NPS can easily determine the high pedestrian traffic areas and use that information to strategically post signage for visitors. This ensures that important messages are viewable by the visitors and maintains the scenic landscape by reducing sign pollution. Maximizing the Mall Layout: By analyzing data on where people tend to congregate, the NPS can identify opportunities for concession sales and emergency medical services, as well as attractions that could be made more kid-friendly. Ensuring Crowd Control: BriefCam’s proximity detection and crowd density capabilities can help the NPS monitor crowding patterns and hotspot areas to help manage crowd sizes. They can even set a custom threshold for crowds and receive real-time alerts when occupancy limits are exceeded. This will be especially crucial until the pandemic has passed. Locating Lost Children: BriefCam’s rapid video review capabilities provide high-powered technology to help the NPS reunite parents with their lost children. Technological solutions “BriefCam is thrilled to collaborate with Convergint and other industry leaders to deliver innovative technology solutions for the National Mall and surrounding monuments,” said Seva Liokumovich, BriefCam’s Director of Strategic Technical Solutions. “We look forward to continuing our collaboration and helping to provide a memorable, engaging, and safe experience for the thousands of people who visit annually.”
The company is a front-runner in building materials, operating around the world. It is well known for its finished cement boards, a high-tech mix of cement and fibres. The company’s US-based Project Manager responsible for developing and deploying the Work-In-Process RFID tracking system across their 8 North-American plants shared an update about the project. Challenges In order for the solution to be successful, four specific challenges have to be addressed: Substantial losses occur throughout the production process: How to develop Work-In-Process visibility from raw material to finished products in order to keep track of everything? Most products come with paper labels that don’t stick well: How to avoid wasting so much time walking around products to find and read identifiers? The cement boards are cast into molds and baked in an autoclave, where all RFID tags failed: Is there a solution that withstands high temperatures, for how many hours, and at what pressure? The manufacturing environment is very dusty and busy: Would RFID be able to have a read without having to move everything? Solution The company found a number of promising options in the market that could meet their requirements for an RFID tag to be mounted onto the cement board molds and survive industrial autoclave temperatures. The products selected were then put through a battery of tests designed to replicate the company’s demanding manufacturing environment. And in the end, it is the Xerafy Roswell Autoclave RFID tags that came out on top, ranking highest when it comes to high temperatures and pressure, shock resistance, accuracy and read range, wide read angle, as well as reliable mounting options. The company has now decided to go ahead with its next phase, with extensive tests in the field, in order to finalize how best to track the molds, capture information throughout the production process, and eventually scale up the solution to all their production sites.
The City of Mecca selected E-vision to deploy its innovative waste collection solution alongside 15,000 rugged Micro X-II RFID tags from Xerafy activated in the field. The Saudi Arabian city of Mecca has deployed Xerafy’s Micro X-II RFID tags to successfully manage thousands of waste collection bins. Using Xerafy’s rugged tags and a software solution from E-vision, the city now has real-time visibility into its waste collection activities and vehicle fleet. Mecca was looking for a way to track the status of waste bins as well as the location of its waste collection vehicles. To better service customers, the city wanted to be able to confirm that each trash bin had been emptied into the collection vehicle, enable automated electronic communications from the trucks to the operations office, and minimize human intervention in data collection activities. RFID-based waste management solution Mecca selected the RFID-based waste management solution from Riyadh-based E-vision. The company provided its innovative Waste Collection solution, along with rugged tags from Xerafy, a customized GPS tracking device, and RFID readers from ThingMagic. Mecca is leveraging several modules of E-Vision’s waste collection software, including complaint management, fleet management, tracking, and other customized services. E-vision also created a communication board to manage the hardware tracking functionality. “Waste collection is a challenging environment for data collection,” said Tarek Fawaz, Technical Manager at E-vision. “Xerafy has provided us with RFID tags that are uniquely suited to the environment in Saudi Arabia, and that is rugged enough to resist the shock and vibration the waste bins are exposed to.” Real-time tracking Mecca and E-vision are developing a new device with a built-in RFID reader to improve data collection and software user interface Mecca can track which containers have been emptied and when, and can also track and manage its vehicle fleet in real-time. Using the complaints management module, customers and supervisors can record any problems or violations via cellphone app, and submit the issue to the company as well as track and confirm resolution. Managers can also monitor performance and generate a wide variety of reports based on the RFID data. With the system successfully in operation for nearly three years, Mecca and E-vision are developing a new device with a built-in RFID reader to improve data collection, as well as enhancing the software user interface and redesigning the software architecture in preparation for a transition to cloud hosting.
Founded in 1966, New Zealand Company Skyline Enterprises Ltd is a global leisure operator with five sites in New Zealand, Singapore, and Canada. The company operates an inventory of thousands of luge carts, a purpose-built three-wheeled cart which is gravity-fueled, with the rider having control over speed and direction using a braking and steering system. The activity is fast-paced, with luge carts typically sustaining high levels of vibration and physical impact. As the carts are used and stored outside, they are also subjected to challenging environmental conditions in the form of wet weather, high levels of humidity and extreme cold. Improved operational efficiency Correctly executed maintenance schedules are essential for regulatory compliance and improved operational efficiency. Knowing when reusable assets are due for maintenance can be a real challenge for organizations, especially when the asset is a luge cart and is used in a range of extreme physical and environmental conditions. To address these challenges, the company launched a project to have all luge carts RFID tagged and tracked by reading stations each time they complete a track circuit, demonstrating a recorded cycle history for each cart. The overall RFID solution incorporates several key components, each addressing the issues of this challenging environment. A SlimLine A8060 linear polarised multi-purpose antenna from Times-7 was chosen specifically for its slim form factor and optimized RF field. Integrated read stations The A8060’s optimized RF field also allowed the antenna to accurately read all tags with ease At only 86 mm wide and 8 mm thick, the antennas were easily mounted into integrated read stations above the luge tracks. The A8060’s optimized RF field also allowed the antenna to accurately read all tags with ease, safely above the fast-moving luge carts below. The use of the Xerafy Cargo Trak versatile on/off metal tag is also critical in the success of this solution. With its long read range and incredible shock resistance, Cargo Trak tags are mounted inside each luge cart, with excellent all-weather performance. Completing the solution was the Speedway Revolution R220 RFID reader from Impinj. Excellent read range Information & Business Systems Manager at Skyline Enterprises, Richard Allen, said, “Times-7 UHF antennas were chosen because of their form factor and optimized RF field, which gave excellent read range. Coupled with super-rugged Xerafy tags, Skyline has deployed a successfully robust and flexible RFID solution for our demanding environment.” “We plan to continue using this winning UHF antenna/tag combination to deploy RFID at all of our luge sites, including our newest site in South Korea. Future projects include tracking our gondola fleet and using RFID to enhance our luge customer experience allowing for real-time photo sharing. Times-7 and Xerafy RFID technology will be involved in these exciting new projects.”
Compta leads the field in urban waste collection management with its Bee2Waste solution in operations in over 40 cities across Europe and South America. Portuguese technology company Compta manages 250,000 waste containers in Europe alone. The company was looking at adding specific features to its solution for municipalities and waste collection service companies: Monitoring of filling capacity Real-time usage data RTI inventory management in the field through unique identifiers The requirements focused on UHF rewriteable transponders that would allow being read at a distance with a high level of accuracy. The Xerafy Micro X-II UHF Tag was selected as it is specifically designed for this type of demanding application in the field. RFID reader The waste-collection vehicles are equipped with an RFID reader attached to the hopper to automatically read a container's unique identifier. The system then associates the container with the GPS location and customer information. The solution also supports mobile RFID readers where required, allowing for fully flexible configurations. In turn, the additional data points collected through the solution are leveraged to drive operational efficiency. Usage patterns are analyzed to help identify local requirements and optimize collection routes and schedules accordingly. Personnel and fleet management also benefit from insights, in the form of targeted training and optimization of vehicle dispatch, availability, and fuel consumption.
Spoils precious green spaces. Dangerous to humans and wildlife. Could contain toxic material or asbestos. Damages the watercourses and soil quality. Ugly eyesore. Local nuisance. Breeding ground for pests such as rats and cockroaches. Despite all of these negative impacts, local authorities across England had to deal with 976,000 fly-tipping incidents in the year running up to March 2020. In other words, roughly 20,000 people per week on average thought it was a good idea to dump their household or commercial waste on a road, pavement, piece of farmland or another place where they aren’t supposed to. Environmental support services At around the time that the collection of these statistics ended, three businesses working in collaboration took their new solution to the marketplace. John Roberts, Solutions Director at Kingdom L A Support which provides environmental support services to local bodies across the UK, said: “Through working with local councils for the best part of ten years, I’ve seen first-hand how steep the rise in environmental crime has been. Knowing that the effects of the pandemic and lockdowns could only worsen the growing problem, I was worried.” Three businesses working in collaboration took their new solution to the marketplace “Up until that point, fly-tipping was being tackled in one of two ways. Either local councils would need to watch hours and hours of standard CCTV footage, which was often too poor quality for any faces or number plates to be identified anyway, or local authority officers were tasked with manually trawling through the rubbish to find some proof of address that could link the waste to the person who dumped it leading to lengthy investigations.” Grade video analytics “As you can imagine, neither were effective – and both used up huge amounts of local authority time and budgets. So, I reached out to Kingdom Systems and Bi3 to see if anything could be done.” WasteWatch Cam is a next-generation camera solution that has been designed specifically to capture littering and fly-tipping offenses by harnessing enterprise grade video analytics which learns scenes and objects through patented algorithms, combined with Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR). Richard Eaves, Head of Business Intelligence and Operations at Business Insight 3 (Bi3) said: “I led a specialist team to run through all stages of the product’s technology development – from initial testing and feedback to real world deployment. This took approximately six months due to the need to create a bespoke software application that could link two technologies – one that was well-established and the other that was cutting-edge.” Clear video footage The system also detects number plates captured within the local vicinity using dedicated ANPR cameras" The software that Bi3 created was also designed to trigger a user-friendly email alert whenever an incident is captured, which is immediately transmitted to the L A Support team, along with all supporting evidence, including clear video footage and screenshots of the fly-tipping taking place. “The custom-built detection systems aren’t like any other,” said Craig Walton, Head of Systems at Kingdom Systems which delivers cost-effective security systems. “The 5MP HD cameras with starlight technology enable the enterprise grade video analytics to detect and alert on littering of objects as small as a box of McDonalds McNuggets. The system also detects number plates captured within the local vicinity using dedicated ANPR cameras which come fitted and powerful auto adapting infra-red lights that enable it to capture footage no matter the light quality or weather conditions.” Standard CCTV cameras L A Support then provides vital human verification of this evidence, before taking action in the form of Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs), warnings and – where that is not followed through – prosecution. This makes the solution completely end-to-end, with everything from detecting the offense to holding the offender accountable, taken care of by WasteWatch Cam. The standard CCTV cameras that were in place were capturing about 50 incidents a week Dartford Borough Council was needing to move up to three tonnes of fly-tipped waste from a lay-by that had become notorious for fly-tipping, every week. The standard CCTV cameras that were in place were capturing about 50 incidents a week, but only a fraction of this footage was clear enough to be used to hold an offender accountable. Evidence being indisputable Earlier this year, the Council installed WasteWatch Cam in the fly-tipping hotspot. In the first week that it was there, seven incidents were captured and – due to the evidence being indisputable – all seven offenders paid their FPNs. More than that, the Council only needed to clear less than one tonne of waste from the spot in the whole first three months that WasteWatch was installed – a huge decrease from nearly three tonnes per week. Richard Cherry, Enforcement Manager at Dartford Borough Council said: “Fly-tipping has a huge impact on our local environment and our reputation.” Fly-Tipping hotspot The number of incidents in that spot is 1% what it once was, and the number hasn’t increased elsewhere" “Unfortunately, because we’re so close to the M25, we feel that knock-on effect of passing motorists thinking they can dump their waste here and get away with it. But the installation of WasteWatch Cam has been hugely successful. Unlike measures that were in place before, it’s not just a deterrent – fly-tippers don’t just see it and dump their waste elsewhere – it’s preventive.” “The number of incidents in that spot is 1% what it once was, and the number hasn’t increased elsewhere.” The Council has now installed WasteWatch Cam in another spot, just outside the town of New Barn. Financially-Beneficial solution Roberts said: “I think the potential for WasteWatch is endless. Even months after it was first installed in Dartford, the incident rate hasn’t risen. It’s a long-term, financially-beneficial solution that holds offenders responsible and means that taxpayers’ money can be put towards a better purpose, rather than clearing up after people who destroy our countryside and communities.” The advanced technology and hardware mean it could be the key to truly cracking down on this issue" Expanding on the different settings that WasteWatch could be installed at, Walton said: “There’s no reason why it couldn’t be installed on every motorway, piece of private agricultural land, fly-tipping hotspot and beauty spot across the UK. The advanced technology and hardware mean it could be the key to truly cracking down on this issue and creating much cleaner, greener spaces for us all.” Online learning platforms “As consumers, we are slowly starting to accept the many different benefits of technology into our lives,” added Eaves. “We use a FitBit to monitor our health, online learning platforms to develop our knowledge, and even drones to speed up search and rescue missions. Now is the time we use AI and video analytics to rid of fly-tipping.” WasteWatch Cam is an end-to-end solution designed to support tackle the UK’s growing problem of fly-tipping. Created in 2020, it uses a combination of ANPR and video analytics to effectively identify offenders and their vehicles in the course of littering and fly-tipping as well as see to it that the individual is held responsible through a highly experienced enforcement team issuing FPNs, warnings and – where that is not followed through – prosecution.
Round table discussion
Perimeter security is the first line of defense against intruders entering a business or premises. Traditionally associated with low-tech options such as fencing, the field of perimeter security has expanded in recent years and now encompasses a range of high-tech options. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the latest trends in perimeter security technology?
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.
Green surveillance: Manufacturers & Suppliers
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