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Talon Air Uses Optex Perimeter Warning System to Prevent Damage to Aircraft

Talon Air Uses Optex Perimeter Warning System to Prevent Damage to Aircraft

Editor / Provider: Optex | Updated: 7/18/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

To prevent the potential for accidents and costly repairs to aircraft being moved in hangars, Talon Air, a full service private jet charter and aircraft management company based at Republic Airport (FRG) in Farmingdale, New York, has installed a unique perimeter-warning system in two of its hangars. Using the Redscan laser-scan detectors from Optex, the system warns pilots and hangar operators when a plane comes within eight feet of the hangar walls.

“Talon Air puts a premium on maintaining clean, safe, and state-of-the-art facilities,” says Adam Katz, Founder, President, and CEO of Talon Air. “The Optex Redscan laser-scan system is a cost-effective and powerful way to reduce the likelihood of damage to aircraft or facilities while allowing personnel to move freely throughout the hangar. The system enhances our reputation as a leader in the industry.”

The goal was to eliminate any risk of damage to aircraft during exit or entry and provide aircraft owners whose planes are managed by Talon with value-added safety measures. The system should also reduce insurance premiums. An important feature of the scanning system was to ensure that aircraft mechanics and hangar personnel have access to the perimeter area. The system detects only objects eight feet off the ground. The scanning system uses four Redscan RLS-3060 laser scanners, which detect a moving object's size, speed, and distance from the detector. The RLS-3060 creates a 200-foot wide detection area that functions like an invisible wall. Any object within the laser's span will set off strobes and sounds.

Grid Squared Systems, an Optex Redscan Certified System Integrator, was selected by Talon to propose a system solution that would fit their unique safety requirements. Grid Squared worked with Optex to devise the best solution. “The Redscan system was selected on both its technical merits and its ease of use,” says Lon Bazelais, Senior Partner at Grid Squared. “We had the system installed and running in minimal time without disruption to Talon operations.”

“The Redscan system provides Talon with the flexibility to tailor the scanning area to increase safety without interfering with day-to-day operations,” says Chris Adams, Optex's Eastern Regional Sales Manager.“The Redscan in the hands of an experienced and certified integrator such as Grid Squared can solve unique problems and be applied in new and innovative ways.”

Munich Airport Enhances Centralized Management through Axis Encoders

Munich Airport Enhances Centralized Management through Axis Encoders

Editor / Provider: Axis Communications | Updated: 7/13/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

Terminals 1 and 2 of Munich Airport are equipped with an elaborate video surveillance system with a total of 1,800 cameras

Munich Airport is the 2nd largest airport in Germany and the 7th largest in Europe in terms of passenger growth (2009). With about 400,000 takeoffs and landings and approximately 33 million passengers per year, first-class security is a matter of prime importance. To enable the system to be controlled via centralized management software, all of the cameras must transmit digital images. Munich Airport therefore equipped about a third of its cameras with Axis video encoders.

The European-wide tender for the project was made in mid-2007, and Alcatel and Lucent were awarded the contract. As Alcatel's partner, Lucent contributed 800 AXIS Q7406 Video Encoders in AXIS Q7900 racks. “We had no problems installing the encoders. We had a telecommunications company that was already working for us perform the installation. Alcatel Lucent then took over the task of integrating the hardware into the Aimetis Symphony software,” recounts Michael Fr?hlich, Munich Airport's project manager for closed circuit television.

The new digital video surveillance system simplifies many processes at the airport. On the one hand, it's a matter of ensuring compliance with the Aviation Security Act, which covers border surveillance, support for the security authorities and passenger checks. On the other hand, it's also about the simplification of work processes. “We're very proud that our encoders have been integrated into such a prestigious project as the Munich airport. The cooperation with our partners Alcatel Lucent and Aimetis was flawless,” recounts Edwin Roobol, Regional Manager Middle Europe, Axis Communications.

Security Management Taking Off

Security Management Taking Off

Editor / Provider: UTC Fire & Security, CEM Systems ,System Development Integration and Bosch Security Systems | Updated: 7/6/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

Airport projects — both new and expansions/upgrades — are taking place all over the globe. These projects aim at putting integration-friendly systems in place for total security and safety management at major air travel hubs.

Zurich Airport Monitored by UTC Fire & Security
Unique (airport operator) operates Switzerland's renowned traffic hub, the Zurich Airport, and is responsible for the airport's daily management. The airport houses around 180 different companies. Unique employs approximately 1,400 people, and together with more than 260 airport partners, the combined total roughly equals 21,000 employees.

The Zurich Airport needed to upgrade its aging video surveillance system, for which obtaining replacement parts was often very difficult. Furthermore, the system could not be expanded, but scalability was demanded along with the expansion of the airport.

UTC Fire & Security offered a combined solution that integrates the existing 330 analog cameras by using 46 digital encoders. The encoders digitalize the camera data so that it can be transferred to the monitoring stations. Each monitoring station is equipped with 40 TB of local storage space, storing more than 400 million images, and events can be saved to the central storage (800 GB) when and if necessary. To avoid the costs associated with establishing a new network, the existing IP network was used to transfer all data.

An additional advantage of the system is that it easily allows for future expansions. With UTC Fire & Security's system installed, Unique is able to monitor all events on its premises and, thus offers a safe environment to those passing through the Zurich Airport.

CEM Systems Refines Access to HKIA
Hong King International Airport (HKIA) has about 900 aircraft movements, serves more than 160 worldwide destinations daily, and had more than 50 million passengers in 2010 pass through the airport, making it one of the busiest international passenger airports.

In 2010, HKIA awarded CEM Systems (a Tyco International Company) a US$2-million security management system upgrade contract. The HKIA upgrade was significant as more than 1,000 serial readers were seamlessly upgraded from Wiegand technology to PicoPass smart-card technology using existing IP connectivity at the airport for simplified installation.

The contract also included a further expansion of fingerprint card readers to all air bridges. The progressive move to biometric card readers was achieved to increase the overall efficiency of the airport.

The fingerprint readers increase HKIA's security by providing three levels of identity checks, including ID authentication, PIN check and fingerprint verification. Each reader has a large internal database which holds card and encrypted biometric templates at the door. This ensures zero system downtime at air bridges. The reader also features an LCD to show personnel meaningful user messages and has many airport-specific door modes such as “Passenger Mode” and “Lobby Mode” for extended doors-open times at air bridges. With the readers in place, only authorized and trained personnel can use the air bridges.

HKIA also uses portable readers for mobile security. The reader allows security personnel to make roaming checks throughout the airport and can also be used at temporary entrances where there is no mains power. This ensures the highest level of security at all times

SDI Upgrades a Midwest Airport's Access Control
System Development Integration (SDI) was contracted by a US international airport in the Midwest to upgrade all hardware and infrastructure to support the biometrics component of its access control system (ACS). The ACS controls the passage of staff (not passengers) into secure and sterile areas of the airport. In order for the ACS to be fully secure, the system must address three checks for an individual's identity: something s/ he has (ID badge), something s/he knows (PIN) and something s/he is (fingerprints).

To minimize service disruption, three subprojects took place. The first challenge was to issue new smart-card ID badges containing unique biometric data to more than 45,000 active holders in a period of less than three months. During this process, every active badge holder was required to submit a new badge application, have his/her badge photo updated, and enroll in the system with two fingerprints that were subsequently stored on an encrypted smart card as a biometric template.

The second subproject targeted the installation and deployment of biometric card readers at each of the employee checkpoints in the airport in order to enhance employee screening. Biometric verification would now be required to allow employee access through each checkpoint. A new fiberoptic network and new control panels were installed throughout the airport as the badge enrolment process took place.

The third subproject focused on the biometric validation of badge holders entering the airfield at a busy drive-in post. The post witnesses airfield access to between 6,000 and 7,000 vehicles per day. This high-traffic entrance screens not only airline employees, but contractors and other service personnel. With the implementation of wireless handheld biometric card readers, all access is now granted through validation of biometric information. A customized gate software application provides the security officer with instant visual verification that all people entering with vehicles are valid badge holders.

Bosch Secures Berlin International
Bosch Security Systems was selected to install security and safety systems at the new Berlin Brandenburg International (BBI) airport. The scope of the order includes the planning and installation for the fire alarm system, electroacoustic emergencywarning system, emergency exit door controllers, intrusion detection system, video surveillance, access control and building functions.

BBI represents the most important infrastructure project in Germany's capital region and is Europe's largest airport construction site to date. It is built to better connect Berlin and the entire region with major destinations in Europe and throughout the world. Further, it will be an important contributor to the regional economy; BBI is expected to create up to 40,000 new jobs.

Optimal protection against fire hazards with around 19,000 automatic and manual fire alarms and a whole host of fire control systems will be installed. They will be connected to a total of nine networked UGM universal security systems. The networked public address (PA) and evacuation system with around 11,500 speakers is planned for passenger information and evacuation in the event of a hazardous situation. The PA and evacuation system will also be used for voice announcements for passenger information and for the gate-paging stations.

In addition, an intrusion detection system will be integrated with the fire, PA and evacuation systems. The information for surveillance is recorded using around 1,200 emergency call couplers. The video surveillance system consists of 300 network dome cameras, 260 HD video cameras as well as 900 video cameras of different types. It will be managed by the Bosch video management system. Bosch will also install more than 600 kilometers of copper cable for the fire alarm and intrusion detection systems as well as the electroacoustics.

The new BBI airport will most likely go into operation in June 2012. With 280,000 square meters of terminal and pier space, a baggage sorting hall of 20,000 square meters, as well as a 9,500-meter conveyor line, it will be one of the largest airports in the world.

Moving About in Airports with Biometric Scanning: The World at Your Fingertips

Moving About in Airports with Biometric Scanning: The World at Your Fingertips

Editor / Provider: Camille Shieh | Updated: 7/6/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

Advanced technologies such as biometrics-credentialing kiosks are not just seen in movies;they are gradually appearing in high-risk settings such as at airport customs. Not only do biometrics help screen travelers, they are also exceptional management tools in safeguarding restricted areas and keeping tabs on attendance and payroll records.

Biometrics have not been popular in airport settings until recent years, as a result of the technical barriers that hindered their performance in real-life situations. Often, a biometric reader that performed perfectly in a laboratory test is less impressive in real life, as various environmental and hygienic factors obstruct accurate scans.

In the case of fingerprint scanning, most optical sensors are configured to look for the presence or absence of total internal reflectance (TIR), which is the phenomenon whereby the interface between glass and air acts as a mirror at certain angles, said Phil Scarfo, Senior VP of Worldwide Sales and Marketing, Lumidigm. “The contact between the skin and the platen defeats the TIR, allowing those points of contact between the finger and the sensor to be imaged. Thus, those points of contact must be complete and visible to enable the conventional sensor to collect a fingerprint image. Optical and electronic sensors simply cannot do this time after time. All too often, 3 to 20 percent of the time, the reader is unable to detect the fingerprint.”

In recent years, multispectral imaging technology has solved the fingerprint-capturing problems that conventional imaging systems encounter in less-than-ideal conditions. “This solution is based on using multiple spectra of light and advanced polarization techniques to extract unique fingerprint characteristics from both the surface and subsurface of the skin,” Scarfo said.

As airlines and airports work to balance traveler convenience with the need for security, they will increasingly integrate advanced biometricsbased identity authentication technologies into the growing range of self-service processes within air travel, such as passenger and baggage check-in kiosks, said Scott Basham, Location, Perimeter and Surveillance Security Asia-Pacific Program Lead, Unisys. “This is because self-service processes have extended deeper into the air travel cycle — from online flight reservations to today's passenger and luggage check-in kiosks at domestic airports just prior to boarding a flight.”


Staff and Crew Management
In “Recommended Security Guidelines for Airport Planning, Design and Construction” revised by the US Transportation Security Administration in May, while the use of biometrics is not a federal requirement for US airports, the higher degree of security is recommended for strategically significant facilities or high-risk portals.

Commonly used access control features that tie in with time anddual-authentication process, which includes a smart card with a photo ID and biometrics, said Scott Mahnken, VP of Marketing, Bio-Key International. “Depending on the life cycle of the access control system installed, incorporating time and attendance into access control is a logical step in the upgrading/ replacement process,” said Mark Moscinski, VP of Safety and Security, System Development Integration.

Restricting access for aviation staff can be easily configured by applying biometrics credentialing to sensitive entry points. For unsupervised access to high risk areas, biometrics clearly offer a more secure solution, Basham said. “But care must be taken to ensure that the biometrics cannot be circumvented — either through biometric spoofing or tailgating, where multiple people enter at the same time without verifying their separate identities.”

“At Yeager Airport in West Virginia, hand geometry readers have been used since 2001, restricting access to the control tower located in the airport terminal and also to the HVAC system and other sensitive equipment,” said , VP of International Sales, Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies. “The control tower doors are opened about every five minutes around the clock. The hand readers are all networked to the airport's central security system.”

Staff's time-and-attendance records can be simplified as well. “Biometrics are often at the front end for time-andattendance systems in all types of industries, including transportation venues,” Diedam said. “Contrary to using badges, sign-ins or other ways of tracking employees, a biometric reader assures that no employee can punch in for another, eliminating time fraud and reducing payroll costs. This is why so many organizations now employ biometrics; for instance, at the Miami International Airport, the hand punch terminals take time and attendance even for janitorial services.”

Eliminating “buddy punching” is only part of the reason that many want to upgrade, Scarfo observed. “Biometric time-and-attendance systems also prove to be more cost-effective in the long run. Within three to five years, biometric solutions become break-even with plastic cards because of the associated costs with cartridge and printer replacements, as well as the support and management of the system.”

“We've received many requests for facial-recognition technology for airport employees,” said Aluisio Figueiredo, COO of Intelligent Security Systems. “The main factor is that it is not as intrusive as iris and fingerprint scanning. However, the drawback is that equipment setup must be in accordance with the environment; cameras must be placed in specific areas under specified lighting to ensure accurate readings. This technology cannot be set up just anywhere.” The technology can be installed in both large- and smallscale airports, as it is affordable and can be implemented according to various planning needs and available budgets.

Dangers Screened Out
For external screening of travelers coming into or leaving the country, biometric scanning does provide double prevention against possible security breaches. In some airports, a database of collected personal biometrics data is integrated and connected to government databases for quick referencing and tracking of suspicious persons. “The database can be connected to a similar installment, such as the FBI's identification system, or it can be maintained independently in the cloud,” Mahnken said.

Since 2002 in Europe, internal and external security systems in many European airports have already been interfaced with government databases to ensure air travel safety, said Arjan Bouter, International Sales Manager, Nedap Security Management.

Sky is the Limit: Airport Security Soaring into Smart Management

Sky is the Limit: Airport Security Soaring into Smart Management

Editor / Provider: Camille Shieh | Updated: 7/4/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

Heightened aviation security since the 9/11 attacks and subsequent terrorist threats has brought along increased awareness, for danger can be detected or deterred before brought into the air.

As new airports continue to be constructed and existing ones upgraded, newer technologies like HD video surveillance, video content analysis and management software are gradually adopted to enhance the security and safety of complex airport and aviation operations. Security management of the entire premises is, thus, increasingly highlighted. One of the top challenges faced by system integrators today is assimilating new technologies and products into existing systems, as old and new systems often have trouble communicating with one another. However, should an airport project adopt technologies based on an open platform, integration would be much smoother, with extra cost minimized and existing investment extended.

It is common to find restaurants, retail shops, cafes — and even hotels, spa centers and casinos — in today's airports. “As airports provide a global transportation network among cities, they are important hubs and have considerable regional economic significance, giving the cities they serve great commercial advantages over those that do not have them,” said Uwe Karl, Head of Airport Solutions, Siemens Building Technologies. “Airports will undoubtedly continue to grow in number, and existing airports will continue to grow in size in order to satisfy the increasing demand for mobility. The systems employed to protect them, therefore, need to accommodate such growth, with a smooth migration path to allow systems to expand easily.”

Newer, Bigger, Better
The mature markets in North America and Western Europe see a continuation of security upgrades. “The sales outlook is promising as threat has not lessened,” said Mark Wilson, VP of Marketing, Infinova. “The biggest need requested by airports in North America is HD video surveillance.”

The US market is continuing at a good pace, fueled by the events of 9/11 and carried through up until the Obama administration, said Mark Moscinski, VP of Safety and Security, System Development Integration. “Federal stimulus funding has also kicked in for many airport security projects with design phases giving way to implementation projects; in fact, we seem to be only at a halfway point through the federal funds for the realization of our current projects.” In the last few years, large airports in Europe have had more difficulty with growth than smaller airports, and this trend will continue in the next five years, said Arjan Bouter, International Sales Manager at Nedap. “In Europe, large airports are looking for more flexible solutions to curb the impact of disruptions by extreme weather conditions and other disasters.”

Newer airports in the Middle East and Asia will also challenge the European ones, Bouter continued. “Obviously, this will have an effect on security management systems; new safety and security platforms will contribute to a lower TCO that improves the competitveness of European airports.”

New and upgrade projects in emerging markets, such as China, India, Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, Russia and Latin America, see healthy growth in number. “We recently completed a project for 22 airports in India, in addition to other major projects in Easter Europe and the Middle East,” Wilson said. “For these projects, we used a combination of analog and HD cameras, and in many cases, they are taking advantage of the existing fiber optics.”

These regions are characterized by strong expansion. For instance, China has planned over the next five years 55 new airports to cover the expansion of traffic, Bouter added. “These regions will implement new security platforms, often based on open standards.”

Many airports in these regions are also undergoing a “face-lift,” and usually for these projects, HD and megapixel technologies are sought after in conjunction with advanced software like video content analysis (VCA), said Aluisio Figueiredo, COO of Intelligent Security Systems. Overall, the physical security market for airports is expected to double by 2016, said Julian Harris, Research Analyst for Aerospace and Defense in North America, Frost & Sullivan. “Perimeter security is growing significantly due to technology innovation and the push to protect patron safety. We see fiber-optic fencing experience more growth than traditional fencing, as the former continues to be invested in.”

In video surveillance, Harris sees more IP surveillance installed at larger international airports, while smaller airports opt for analog technology with less integration of disparate security systems. “In terms of access control, fingerprint readers tend to be adopted by larger airports, while smaller airports stick to standard access control protocol, suggesting that larger airports are exploring more options.”

Biometrics will continue to play an increasingly crucial role, agreed Scott Mahnken, VP of Marketing, Bio-Key International. “Convenience and security are paramount in airports, and biometrics are virtually impossible to corrupt yet involve no cards, passwords or tangible assets. Documents may be forgotten, but we will always have our fingerprints or other biometric attributes.”

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Government In volvement
As most airports are state-owned, municipal, state and federal governments are crucial players in determining what security measures need to be set up in airports. “There is a maze of security and regulatory issues facing every airport,” said John Diedam, VP of International Sales, Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies. “It starts with a thorough understanding of Title 49 CFR Part 1542 of the US Homeland Security's Transportation Department, ranging from who must be in charge, how to become compliant and airport tenant security programs, to security of various locations within the airport, law enforcement and access control. The first objective is to reduce the complexity of this and all other pertaining regulations, along with the security ramifications.”

Next, one needs to determine and resolve airport security and fire safety vulnerabilities, Diedam continued. “Security could be almost perfect if everything was locked down and nobody could come or go, but that's not feasible. What needs to be done is to assure that security is at a high level but innocents can escape when needed. There's a compromise, and they are typically found within the regulations aforementioned and local codes and regulations.”

In the U.S., every commercial airport is owned and operated by a local government entity — city, county, state or port authority — each with its own political structure, funding capabilities, environmental/noise requirements and security/law enforcement support, said Art Kosatka, CEO of TranSecure (a member of the Association of Independent Aviation Security Professionals). “There are federal regulations, as well as state and local building and electrical codes and fire and life safety codes, which must be met.”

“We often see that local or state governments are strongly involved in the economic development of the region/country where the airport is situated,” Bouter said. “Under such circumstance, local solution providers are often favored to take on new or upgrade projects.”

Airports are used as hubs to create new business in many places, observed Gerard Otterspeer, Product Marketing Manager for CCTV, Bosch Security Systems. “At times, international consultants such as ADPI, COWI-Larsen, Bechtel and Parsons set the security standards in airport projects while they help clients plan and design aviation construction projects.”

New ≠ Best
While there are strict and high security requirements, not all airport projects use the latest technologies the security industry has to offer. “Airport clients are very savvy customers, knowing what they need and insisting that their integrators and manufacturers provide systems that meet their expectations for both performance and budget,” Wilson said. “With even new construction projects, it is not unusual to see analog video implanted in areas where it sufficiently does the job. In fact, there are many hybrid and coexisting systems at airports.”

“Airports focus on leveraging as much of their existing technology as possible; they do not have a rip-andreplace mentality,” said James Chong, CTO of VidSys. “Additionally, they tend to wait to use new technology until it has been proven in the marketplace.”

“Generally, we like to think in terms of first providing an initial concept of operations (ConOps) for the customer — what are you doing, why do you need it, where is it required, what is the threat you are addressing and what are the priorities,” Kosatka said. “This should drive the technology decisions, one of which might be that new technology in consideration isn't right for the airport's actual needs at all.”

Securing airports is a complex undertaking, remarked Larry Lien, VP of Product Management at Proximex (an ADT Security Services company). “Airports are continuously looking for ways to improve ConOps to best protect passengers and employees, as well as avoid poor publicity and lost revenue from security incidents. Some airports leverage the latest technologies to fit specific project requirements. They evaluate many factors to make the decisions, including the benefits, risk factors, costs and ROI for new technologies. Newer technologies, such as HD cameras, offer significant advantages because airports may leverage fewer cameras but still cover a large area. However, airports must still consider the ability of newer technologies to communicate with existing systems and fit within the ConOps.”

In airport projects, proven brands, solutions and products are preferred, while current technologies are followed in a general fashion, Otterspeer observed. “HD and even full HD products have gained popularity in this kind of projects for applications like forensic search and wide-angle viewing; however, during the course of a project, the technologies used can change.” Technologies used are much influenced by the consultants in many cases.

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HD and VCA
Using HD video streaming can help extend the life of the existing analog cabling of an airport surveillance system while providing better forensic evidence and the zero latency needed for live monitoring using PTZ camera controls, Wilson Vertical Market said.

In airport security, the devil is indeed in the details. “HD delivers a wide-screen format that captures more useable image content, reducing the amount of empty sky or foreground in a scene if a wide-viewing angle is needed, such as at baggage claim areas,” Otterspeer said.

Motion sensor technology has certainly improved and can now detect farther and more precisely than previous versions, said Rolland Trayte, President of FutureSentry. “Solar-powered wireless sensors offer simple installation and add the detection range to 1,000 feet. Advanced applications can also add analytics to further ensure robust detection and reliability of alarming inputs, and enable the system to ‘learn' the difference between uniquely shaped objects.”

Adoption of VCA for airport monitoring remains low, despite a visible growth in the last couple of years. “VCA is used in about less than 10 percent of airport projects currently, with potential to grow moderately to 15 to 20 percent in the next few years,” Harris said.

“Security standards are not in place yet to get this widely adopted in the market.” Actual applications, Otterspeer added, include line crossings for external perimeters and wrong-way or loitering detection for strategic locations such as air traffic control towers, customs gates and aircraft ramps. “VCA is used from site to site, depending on what the project requirements are,” Moscinski said. “Currently, simple analytics are used most often, as the technology still has several barriers to overcome, such as unsatisfactory hit ratios and high FARs. Simple VCA like motion and object detection can help identify when someone has crossed checkpoints from the nonsecurity to the security side, alarm relevant personnel and provide evidence to assist with tracking and identifying the intruder. We see the most active VCA evaluation now taking place for use in perimeter security.”

Another key technology identified is ALPR, which is very common these days at Tier-1 (major) airports and is becoming increasingly common at Tier-2 and even some Tier-3 airports, said Jim Kennedy, President of Inex/Zamir. “The primary use is for parking revenue management to prevent ticketswapping fraud and subsequent revenue losses. Increasingly, we are requested to provide a ‘list-matching' capability to our system so that local authorities can be immediately notified if a vehicle that is on a watch list enters a specific parking facility.” The disappointment with VCA often stems from undelivered functions it promised in the beginning, Figueiredo said. “Many vendors are pushing less-than-ready VCA products out to customers to make quick cash even if the technology is still not mature enough for real-life usage, ultimately creating more problems for customers. The accuracy of VCA reading is, on average, 85 percent or better when utilized in a controlled environment with strategic camera position and correct lighting.”

HD, megapixel cameras and video analytics may provide improved inf o rma t i on and s i tua t i ona l awareness, but they introduce enormous operational costs in terms of bandwidth and storage requirements, and other issues such as forensic capability and privacy.

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Drawing Together
In expansion projects, such as a midsize, domestic airport scaling to large, international airport or a large-scale airport expanding current facilities, new security systems and technologies, such as HD video, IP-based video and VCA, are often introduced. “These new technologies cannot be installed independently of other existing security systems and require shared information,” Lien said. “Security operators must use different consoles and different systems to manage incidents. The costs associated with operating independent and nonintegrated systems, such as training, additional skills required for reporting and longer incident response time, are significant.”

Yet connecting disparate systems under one central command is no easy task. “We face a lot of problems with legacy systems,” Figueiredo said. “Sometimes, there is no documentation, no SDK, or the company responsible for the system simply went out of business. System integrators (SIs) like us basically have to make sure that the systems work together through the use of an open-platform approach.”

“Typically, each installer/integrator is focused on making sure its own system is installed and runs correctly,” Lien added. “Expectations of how to integrate and what an integrated system can realistically accomplish could often be miscommunicated. Entities that require communication between systems should find an experienced SI that can help them set clearly defined goals for their environments.”

For security purposes, central management software like physical security information management (PSIM) is a good way to maintain unified control over different systems in operation. “A true PSIM solution enables one complete and intelligent security system by aggregating information from various subsystems and automating processes as appropriate to effectively manage situations,” Chong said.

PSIM software is a good option whenever doing a significant expansion or a new project, added Joshua Koopferstock, Director of Marketing, Feeling Software. “Multiple systems, mapping and SOPs should be combined within a single software package, and this common operating picture in airports is becoming increasingly important as security systems become bigger and more complex as the facility expands in size.” To facilitate smooth integration of hardware and software, as well as the old and the new, adopting an open approach that grants partners with access to their SDKs and APIs is vital, Koopferstock said.

“Oftentimes, SIs and PSIM vendors combine their knowledge of and expertise in physical security technologies, process management, and security policy and compliance to provide organizations with a complete situational awareness and management solution,” Chong said.

In addition, SIs and airports should work together to consider their ConOps and how the systems should function after integration, Lien remarked. “Understanding process flows, automating tasks, correlating information and giving usable information to operators will help airports optimize their operations and realize cost savings.”

Many are now focused on quickly identifying situations and disseminating the information to the guards, police and other necessary agencies in real time, Chong said. “Airports are also starting to use a single security asset, such as a camera, for multiple uses. For example, security may use a camera to see if someone is walking around the runway, while air side operations may use the same camera to verify if the gate is available for an arriving flight.”

The growing complexity of daily airport operations demands equally diversified security systems. Smoothly integrated systems, such as access control and people tracking, will help with the fluidity of security management on aviation premises. Biometrics, the new kid on the block for airport access control and ID authentication, will be explored next.

Port of West Sacramento Chooses DNF for Surveillance Upgrade

Port of West Sacramento Chooses DNF for Surveillance Upgrade

Editor / Provider: DNF Security | Updated: 6/29/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

The Port of West Sacramento is located 79 nautical miles north of San Francisco. Boasting some of the world's richest agricultural and industrial regions, the port is central to network interstate and state highways, an international airport and national railway systems.

Concentrated in such an elaborate transportation hub, the Port of West Sacramento required a surveillance solution that would meet the demands of continual video surveillance throughout their facilities. A preexisting, outdated, system simply did not satisfy the Port's security demands. Amy Cameron, Analyst for City of West Sacramento said, “When the City of West Sacramento began management of the Port of West Sacramento, the security cameras and overall system was antiquated, not integrated, and became difficult to maintain.”

With this in mind, the Port weighed out their options and knew that upgrading their entire surveillance environment was their only option. The City of West Sacramento turned to security contractor, All Phase Security to architect a solution that met today's demands and tomorrow's requirements. All Phase Security recommended utilizing DNF Security's high-end line of video storage and workstations for the heart of the solution. DNF Security partnered with All Phase to provide an answer that included; capacity, scalability, speed, and endurance.

After careful consideration, the Port of West Sacramento accepted All Phase Security's recommendations. “Through the public bidding process, DNF Security was hired as a subcontractor to furnish and install their fully functional video storage appliance,” said Cameron.

The Port uses three DNF Security components: one was the powerful Falcon Video Management Engine (VME) which included dual quad core processing power, independent fail safe high speed disks for OS and video recording applications. Another was a state-of-the-art Seahawk 2405 IP SAN storage appliance that included SAS 6g storage array architecture, advanced data protection, multiple iSCSI ports and redundant power that is centrally located as the back end storage vehicle for the Falcon VME. Using the IP SAN Seahawk also allows for future growth of NVR's and capacity expansion. Joe Cuellar, Account Manager at DNF Security says, “Considering their demanding requirements, we thought that bundling our Falcon and Seahawk appliances would not only satisfy their manageability requirements, but also provide them with advanced storage technology that would meet the most demanding and sophisticated surveillance environments.” The server and storage implementation was followed up with their third DNF Security component, the Falcon 9300 workstation, capable of supporting up to 12 big screen high resolution monitors.

These three critical components were the keystones that enabled the Port's total surveillance execution. The real beauty of this solution is its modularity. As camera loads increase over the years, additions of Falcon VME engines can balance the load and keep the camera LAN separate from the storage SAN. The Seahawk 2405 can meet any new capacity requirements from adding cameras or increasing data retention requirements with the ability to expand to 288 terabytes. Storage performance and redundancy is never called to question because the Seahawk provides up to 5 gigabits of storage bandwidth today with a potential of 40 gigabits of bandwidth with an easy upgrade to 10Gbe technology.

With DNF Security's attention to pre-installation requirements, custom configuration, along with ease of use, resulted in a quick 15 minute installation.

All Phase Security never lost track of the fact that today's sophisticated technology does not translate in to ease-of-use. DNF Security products offered ease of management through internet access and web graphical user interfaces. There were no hidden training costs for their support engineers or the City of West Sacramento operators. Extensive easy to understand documentation with intuitive setup and management features made day-to-day operation a breeze.

“The installation process was seamless as we transitioned from our old security system to the new system and the staff has been helpful throughout the process,” said Cameron. “We believe other businesses will benefit from DNF Security.”

By integrating DNF Security's Falcon and Seahawk appliances, the Port of West Sacramento enjoys the benefits of a fully scalable, modular, and high performing surveillance solution. Not only has their security and surveillance requirements been met, but DNF Security's ease-of-use and manageability has resulted in lower management, operations, and training costs. Furthermore with the DNF Security production team's effort to pre-configure their system to their specifications, the Port significantly reduced their time of use.

Now the Port can look to the future, by easily scaling up (and out) their storage with inexpensive storage expansion units as their camera and video analytic requirements increase—this saving time and money. By replacing their obsolete security surveillance system with a state-of-the-art surveillance that will not only exceeds today's requirements, but is poised to grow with the Port Of West Sacramento in the future.

Your Business's Best Friend

Your Business's Best Friend

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 6/29/2011 | Article type: Tech Corner

Anyone who hasever taken notes on a regular basis understands how limiting handwritten notes can be; finding specific information in a notebook can be time-consuming and frustrating. In the past, video archives were nothing more than a collection of footage waiting to be reviewed. With the advent of intelligent surveillance systems, raw video has been transformed into actionable information.

Video content analysis (VCA) has been plagued by bad business practices and unrealistic expectations, but the technology is, in many ways, still evolving and there have already been tried and tested real-life success stories that benefit from it.

The key for VCA to provide maximum value is having a clearly defined problem and realistic expectations of a solution. “There have been successful projects installed all across Europe,” said Gerard Otterspeer, CCTV Product Marketing Manager, Bosch Security Systems. “In Greece, for example, they use video analytics in tunnels to detect if someone is driving the wrong way or at the wrong speed.

That's directional detection coupled with speed detection. If a car stops in the tunnel for a certain amount of time, which is object loitering, the local authorities can be notified. Furthermore, a clear distinction is made between size and object shape, so the system knows if it's looking at a person or a car.”

Quality Comes With a Tag
What exactly is intelligent video? It is a system that analyzes millions of pixels at blazing speeds, Otterspeer said. “No matter what detection you choose, as simple as it may seem, all of it depends on the underlying algorithm. The first step is to analyze all those pixels and then identify objects. Only when you have the objects can you set the rules. So, it all starts with the quality of the algorithm, and this varies greatly from provider to provider.”

For example , in a complex environment where there are objects walking past one another in the background and foreground, the object IDs may be merging and splitting constantly since the camera is not aware of depth in the scene. “A lot of time and efforts have gone into optimizing ID tracking to ensure there is a right balance. If this is not done properly and two objects merge into one, it messes up the detection,” Otterspeer explained.

Many camera companies are giving away their software at low or even zero costs. However, you get what you pay for, which is nothing, cautioned Ivy Li, cofounder and MD of iOmniscient. “System integrators sometimes complain that the products they were using did not work — if they bought them based on price rather than quality and functionality, they should not be surprised.” Developing VCA algorithms requires a tremendous amount of time and resources. When a provider is giving them away for free, it is possible that they did not put in that much effort to begin with. Came r a s , DVRs a n d o t h e r hardware devices are becoming commodities with reasonable quality, leaving price the only thing to compete on, Li said. “This is not yet true for video analytics. The huge difference in quality drives the market and solution prices.”

Most companies already offer reliable, basic solutions such as line crossing, zone entry/exit and tampering detection. Price per channel for these is dropping since most companies can deliver, said Thejaswi Bharadwaj, Head of Civilian Technologies at Delopt. “However, for analytics that involve significant R&D and intellectual property such as people counting, PTZ tracking and ALPR, the prices will stay steady for quite a while.” Today, many camera and DVR manufacturers give away their software for free to sell their other products, Li said. “If you want a good, working product, you would have to pay for it. It's the same with transportation. You can get a bicycle very cheaply. However, it will not get you from Beijing to Paris quickly.”

"Many VCA solutions on the market today use video motion detection. Today's VCA uses advanced technology which applies machine vision to video scenarios in security and business intelligence applications," said Ed Troha, MD of Global Marketing at ObjectVideo. "Video motion detection is often used in products as an added component to drive hardware sales. These are not truly intelligent analytics and can have limited reliability."

Processing
The algorithms determine how intelligent the VCA is, said Patrick Lim, Director of Sales and Marketing for Ademco Far East. “There are products that use entrylevel processors but perform very intelligent functions without a problem. However, having a more powerful processor gives you some space to accommodate future firmware upgrades that can bring more complex algorithms and smarter features.”

VCA algorithms are very computationally intensive, and any increase in available processing power results in the ability to deploy more accurate algorithms without increasing solution prices, said Zvika Ashani, CTO of Agent Video Intelligence. “Computerized vision is a science that has many applications other than security, and advances are slowly applied to VCA, resulting in an increase in solution accuracy.”

Organizations that have the luxury of applying their algorithms to different industries have the greatest advantage since they can adapt and apply their algorithms to different applications, achieving economy of scale and knowledge-sharing among different projects, Otterspeer added. "For example, algorithm R&D could be centralized and later utilized across divisions such as automotive and security."

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Play Nice
Different vendors take different approaches, but the underlying concept is the same. Classifying different rules based on accuracy helps. According to Bharadwaj, there are three categories:
1. Moving objects: people counting, line crossing, zone entry/exit;
2. Static/semi-static objects: object removal, unattended object, dwell time detection (not based on face detection), loitering, crowd counting, object classification; and
3. Special rules: camera tampering, PTZ tracking of moving/stationary objects, ALPR, face detection.

Solutions for the first and third categories are mature, Bharadwaj said. “With the second, we believe more R&D investment is needed for a foolproof solution that works in all situations to surface.” However, Li feels that the question is not about whether an application is ready, but rather if a particular supplier has a product that can work robustly in different environments.

There are four VCA rules that most users are familiar with, namely people counting, directional detection, camera tampering detection and object removal. “The concept can be easily communicated to customers, and the benefits are easily understood,” said Jukka Riivari, CEO of Mirasys.

People Counting
The largest marketfor people counting is retail, Bharadwaj said. “Presently, most retail locations do not have a way to measure footfall traffic and correlate it with sales numbers. A real-life scenario is one in which a store has counting systems installed at all entrances, aisles and exits. These systems can provide various statistics about flow rate, occupancy and other information that can help optimize operations.” In terms of operational efficiency, people counting helps stores maximize staffing levels at both peak- and low-traffic periods, said Steve Gorski, GM for the Americas, Mobotix. “Hospitality is another vertical that also finds significant value through the use of VCA.”

The traditional method for retail counting was highly inaccurate and costly, requiring extensive wiring and many sensors, Lim added. “New top-down intelligent video devices come fully packaged. For chain stores looking to collect data centrally, IP network connectivity also saves a lot of money. Crowd counting for traffic flow in shopping malls is also a growing trend.”

Accurate people counting requires good processing power. “More often than not, multiple cameras are needed for a wide door/passage way. These cameras need to function as a single integrated sensing entity and generate a single count. It is also important to handle overlap between camera views to avoid over/under counting,” Bharadwaj said.

People counting is very valuable for indoor usage, especially in conjunction with access control. However, the greatest potential lies in commercial and retail settings where people want to know how many people are standing in a certain aisle at a certain time. For security and safety applications, there is increased use of crowd density detection, allowing for an alarm if a train platform reaches, for example, 80 percent of its capacity. Line checking, such as in airports, is another area that can greatly improve operational efficiency, Otterspeer said. “One of the things that can reduce false alarms is head detection. The shape of a human head and its relation to the shoulder is always a certain geometry. Detecting that greatly reduces false alarms from dogs or other animals.”

With the right camera placement and good software, you can do high-quality counting anywhere, Li said. “More sophisticated counting applications can be used for queue management to determine average waiting times.”

Counting and crowd management are slightly different, Lim cautioned. “Counting is expected to be more than 90-percent accurate while crowd management looks at the speed of a crowd formation and area of formation. Count accuracy in crowd management is usually not expected to be more than 85 percent.”

For Coastalwatch , people counting is most practical from a high-mounted camera in an area where background noise is less likely, said Tim Chandler, President of CoastalCOMS Division. “Our focus is to assign a risk variable to a risk index — the ‘count' or number of people is assessed to indicate that the number of people has significantly increased or decreased over a predefined amount of time. Our system ends up reporting 'load' rather than 'count,' which works best in beach areas where safety is a concern.”

Directional Detection
Directional detection and tampering detection are basic functions that many cameras include and most customers enable, Otterspeer said.

“Directional movement detection is used for triggering alerts when a person or vehicle is moving in an area and direction that they should not be moving in. This is used, for example, in protection of critical infrastructure and in airports,” Ashani said.

Real-life scenarios for directional detection involve perimeter surveillance and wrong-way movement detection for vehicles and people, Bharadwaj added. “This is a motionbased algorithm; false alarms arise when the line drawn includes objects such as trees that move due to wind.”

Directional detection can also be applied to beaches as a further indication of risk. “The ability to draw a virtual line in the sand and see if folks are stepping across the line to move into or out of the water is useful, as it can modify a risk calculation's results,” Chandler said. “The idea is to support the risk manager with useful decision support metrics that they can evaluate in real time, especially for remote or unmanned areas of responsibility.”

Directional movement detection can be very accurate, so long as the environment is not overly crowded. Outdoor scenarios are more challenging as there are environmental conditions that can lead to false positives or negatives, Ashani said. “Modern VCA algorithms are able to robustly handle outdoor scenarios in many common cases. Another challenge is the ability to distinguish between target types. For example, the system can fail to distinguish between a group of people and a slow moving vehicle if the algorithm is not sophisticated enough.”

Typical sources of false alarms are moving shadows, changing lights and incorrect object/target classification. Each of these can be minimized by developing additional algorithmic components, Ashani said.

Tampering Detection
Like with all video analytics, tampering can be a simple application, Li said. “The system can tell if someone has sabotaged the camera or covered the lens. More sophisticated systems can also tell if the system can see clearly. So even if the camera has not been tampered with but has lost focus or can't see because it's raining too hard or if the camera has moved due to vibrations, the system will let the operator know.”

Tampering detection is a must-have for any surveillance installation. A tampered camera directly defeats the purpose of video surveillance, Bharadwaj said. “Accuracy depends on design. A good solution needs to detect tampering due to camera defocusing, blocked camera and view change. At the same time, it needs to disregard camera shakes/vibrations due to environmental conditions.”

Camera-tampering detection is applicable to any surveillance camera and enhances the operational readiness of cameras in surveillance installations, Ashani said. “For some solutions, camera tampering is not limited to only video loss or image blocking but also detects insufficient lighting or oversaturated images which result in poor video quality.” This application is generally very accurate and generates very few false alarms, Ashani added.

Object Loitering/Removal
Object loitering and object removal are essentially the same thing. The targeted object is identified, but the alarm goes the other way around, Otterspeer said.

At the moment, object removal rules are probably most effective in places where the traffic is not too dynamic, Lim said. “Object loitering is not as magical as some would claim. If a camera is placed over a crowded airport and a crowd forms up covering one another and an unattended bag, there is no way the VCA will work.” Successful applications are likely in museums and exhibitions rather than airports and transport terminals. “I've heard stories about a public transport operator that tried to implement unattended-bag detection for trains, buses and even the stations. It was a complete failure,” Lim added.

Object removal detection is not practical if the object in question is too small, not in a well-lit area or occluded from the view of the camera for very long periods of time, Ashani added. “There was a large warehouse that installed 150 cameras, all of which carried video analytics. The customer wanted to be notified when cargo went missing, and to be able to use forensic search to find the cargo. This was not that difficult,” Otterspeer said. “However, the director of that establishment wanted to know when one little box of a cellular phone went missing, and wanted the system to follow it through all 150 cameras. That was simply not possible — and still isn't — with the current state of the technology.” Once the director was shown how to set up the right detection lines and proper rules, he was still impressed by how much it could help his operations.

Baggage abandoning is a different matter, as the system needs to understand when one object splits into two and establish a connection between the person and baggage.


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Customizations
Boxed solutions are generally not tailored for specific applications. If a customer is looking for one niche solution, it may still be a centralized solution because of the flexibility. It will also be more expensive because the system needs to be trained by engineers, Otterspeer said.

However, meeting customers' real-life needs is an increasingly popular requirement, Li said. “Solutions tailored for industries, ranging from oil and gas to prisons, maximizes value and reliability. For example, solutions for banking provide detection of skimming devices on ATMs, and solutions for airports provide metering of aircraft to tell precisely how long each is parked at the air bridge.”

Another example would be how people counting is used in coastalarea management. “For safety applications, people counting seems to be most interesting for remote ‘pocket beaches,' which are areas that are often off the beaten path and unguarded by lifesavers,” Chandler said. “If a large number of people suddenly appear in an unguarded or remote beach area, that may equate to higher risk if the ocean or water conditions also match up. This type of VCA, which requires accuracy within a range rather than identification of a single human form, is a great example of VCA working in tandem with business rules and VMS-actuated work flows.”

Integration
The power of analytics is greatly enhanced when alarms or events are correlated with those from other functions, such as access control or video management. A unified security platform allows the end user to view information from all the different systems, correlate it and report on it through one interface, said Jumbi Edulbehram, VP of Business Development at Next Level Security Systems. “The combination of this data enables the user to have a fully comprehensive view of security and business operations, and that is what the end user is seeking.”

The challenge in integrating with VMS is that suppliers are focused on storing information and displaying it, Li said. “They're not familiar with the sophistication of VCA metadata, so they don't have the ability to display it. For example, the VCA software may have a function that allows the user to track an individual and know which camera he has passed through over a period of time. However, most VMS systems are just focused on showing raw image scenes; they don't have the capability to ask complex questions nor to display the answers.” To complicate matters, most metadata today is still proprietary, but fortunately there will be a standardized set of metadata in ONVIF 2.0, making it easier to interact and to integrate VCA into other systems, Otterspeer added.

User interface is another problem area. “If the VCA software allows the user to go back to the beginning of an event when the need arises, the metadata to achieve this can be requested from the video analytics system,” Li said. “However, if the VMS's user interface doesn't have a button to activate this function, the user can't get this information.”

VMS integration, thus, requires software developers to work closely to ensure all functionalities can be accessed through a common user interface, and major standards bodies need to pick up their pace in addressing their clients' needs.

Geutebruck Video System Supports Security at Ljubljana Airport

Geutebruck Video System Supports Security at Ljubljana Airport

Editor / Provider: Geutebrück | Updated: 7/7/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

Aerodrom Ljubljana which operates Joze Pucnik Ljubljana Airport has long term plans for it to become the aviation hub for the whole region. With Slovenia's entry into the EU and admission to Schengen in 2007 came the need to increase airport capacity. In the first stage of a two-stage project, the existing passenger terminal (T1) has been renovated and a whole new 6,000 square metre storey added. The extra space together with four new jetways now facilitate the separation of Schengen and non-Schengen traffic and make boarding easier. Part 2 of the project due to start in 2011 involves the construction of a new T2 terminal adjoining T1 to provide capacity for a further 2.5 million passengers per year. 

In fact piece by piece over the last two decades the airport has been completely rebuilt. And with each new construction project the security systems have had to expand and develop. The airport's chosen video security system supplier for the original T1 building, the new garage and outdoor car parks as well as for the recent T1 renovation and additional storey was Geutebruck Adria. This business relationship has now been a long and satisfactory one. 

Technological migration
Since 2006 all new additions to the video security systems have been pure IP. Around 100 new IQeye IP cameras and Axis IP SpeedDome cameras now work alongside the original 160 analog ones. Late in 2008 some new powerful GeViScope video platforms were introduced. Besides increased performance these also brought exceptional video motion detection capabilities and enormous flexibility for future adaptation. In 2009/10 the need to relocate the control room to a new building provided the ideal opportunity to upgrade its facilities. The old analog matrix and analog monitor wall were replaced with a virtual digital matrix and an array of wide plasma monitors.

From the new security operations center staff monitor the whole site. They control the entrances to the airport, the car parking facilities, areas in and around the general aviation and passenger terminals, the VIP areas, the apron and runways.They alert colleagues ‘on the ground' to parking violations, loitering and other suspicious behaviour as well as unattended baggage. Their monitoring also ensures that pick-pockets or other small time criminals are not tempted to take advantage of unsuspecting travellers amid the hustle and bustle. The integration of the video system with the airport's access control system is key to the strict control of movements through the doors and gates which form the crucial air-side/land-side interface. Air-side cameras allow security operations center staff to check that the apron and runways remain unobstructed, safe and secure, and of course enable them to alert and manage emergency or other services if required. 

System selection
Before the contract was awarded for the most recent T1 terminal expansion the airport authority evaluated and compared video security solutions from three major European suppliers. As Dusan Sofric,Ljubljana airport's security manager reports, the Geutebruck equipment was chosen because of its performance and proven reliability. 

This latest GeViScope-based system which uses GscView display software and MBeg control units was designed by Koda and Siemens and installed by PAN electronic and G7. “It is very reliable and easy to use” explains Dusan Sofric. “It is operated by staff in security operations center who have had basic training on GscView.The system has performed very well, exactly as it was initially demonstrated to us.”

Philadelphia International Airport Deploys NABCO Suspect Luggage Containment Vessel

Philadelphia International Airport Deploys NABCO Suspect Luggage Containment Vessel

Editor / Provider: NABCO | Updated: 6/20/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

NABCO, announced that Philadelphia International Airport has purchased a NABCO Suspect Luggage Containment Vessel (SLCV), an innovative security solution that will strengthen the facility's defense capabilities against explosive threats.

The NABCO SLCV will improve the airport's ability to protect both travelers and facility personnel against threats discovered during baggage and passenger screening. The SLCV's explosive containment capabilities, compact size and ease of mobility make it an effective solution for meeting Philadelphia International Airport's specific safety and security requirements.

Philadelphia International Airport is the only major airport serving the 5th largest metropolitan area in the United States. Owned and operated by the city, the airport is located seven miles from downtown Philadelphia and last year served more than 30 million passengers.

An approved U.S. Department of Homeland Security anti-terrorism technology, the NABCO SLCV is used to safely contain a potentially dangerous item discovered during screening, and transport it away from people and screening machines until a bomb squad responds. NABCO's line of Suspect Luggage Containment Vessels can be operated remotely, are compatible with many portable X-ray systems, and can be fully integrated with in-line and conveyance systems.

“The SLCV can help reduce the number of disruptions and evacuations that are usually required when a suspicious item is found in a busy, public area,” said NABCO CEO Frank Tobin. “Not only does this technology protect the safety and well being of the traveling public, but it also sustains uninterrupted performance as a vital transportation and economic hub for the Philadelphia area. Any facility that wishes to increase protection and keep commerce moving can benefit from this capability.”

Philadelphia International Airport is one of hundreds of high-security facilities and law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and around the world that rely on NABCO solutions to safeguard personnel, facilities, communities and the environment against chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive (CBRNE) threats.

Agent Vi Video Analytics Streamline Logistics Work

Agent Vi Video Analytics Streamline Logistics Work

Editor / Provider: Agent Vi | Updated: 5/31/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Founded in 1991, KDL Trans is a globally-oriented logistics provider that specializes in electronic and computer equipment, offering services such as air freight, ocean freight, packing, storage, customs brokerage and more. The company is based out of a new 11,000-square-meter facility close to Brussels airport, which offers access to important trans-European highways. The facility is home to a fleet of some 100 trucks and vans, and includes a range of loading docks, storage warehouses and areas for sorting and other logistical activities.


KDL Trans sought to provide the highest level of security at the new premises, and therefore offers the best service to their range of customers, comprised of both local and international high-profile businesses and organizations. Recognizing that the high value of the goods passing through the facility could attract intrusions by thieves, KDL Trans looked for the way to undertake early detections of unauthorized people in their facility. KDL Trans sought a perimeter detection solution that connected with its monitoring station, to cut down costs associated with employing multiple guards stationed around the premises on weekends when the site is less busy.


After testing for an optimal solution, KDL Trans decided to deploy Agent Vi's real-time video analytics solution, with Axis cameras. The challenging environmental conditions, among them outdoor areas with natural vegetation, harsh weather and extreme changes in lighting, led to a decision to employ Axis thermal cameras, which eliminate these parameters to a large degree. Together with Agent Vi's analytics, the thermal cameras offer range and deliver accurate detection results.


Specifically, the site's eight Axis thermal cameras, which are strategically located around the building's perimeter, were enabled with Agent Vi's embedded video analytics component to allow the following real-time detection rule to be active on each camera: Person moving in an area to detect and alert to unauthorized personnel entering the premises and moving freely in restricted areas.


KDL Trans employs Milestone VMS recording and viewing application, which is integrated with Agent Vi's software. Therefore, events detected by Agent Vi's platform generate an alert which is displayed in the Milestone video management.


The deployment at the site has lifted the level of security by allowing the early detection of intruders entering the site. In fact, a number of perimeter intrusions have been picked up by theolution, and the lead time gained by these early detections enabled a more effective response by the security guards.


The added layer of security offered by the system has been instrumental in KDL Trans' efforts to build business relations with new and existing clients, as they can point to the superior level of security offered at their site.

"We are very happy with Agent Vi's real-time video analytics solution. The integration with Axis thermal cameras offers detection rates at all times of day, and in all lighting conditions," said Jurgen Laet, Operations Manager at KDL Trans. "The real-time alerts generated by the system and sent to the monitoring station have allowed us to decrease the number of security guards stationed around the perimeter, effectively cutting our costs without lowering our level of security."

"We tested a range of solutions, including active IR beams, radars and video analytics, to identify the option for the site. We compared the products, level of security offered, added value and price. On all levels, video analytics had the highest score," said Toon Eeckelaert, Co-owner of ESSC.

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