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Quality Domes Hold No Viewing Limits Ⅱ

Quality Domes Hold No Viewing Limits Ⅱ

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 3/25/2011 | Article type: Tech Corner

Lens
A lens with auto back focus is essential for image quality. “For a fixed dome, what's really important is a good lens that's easy to adjust,” Corrall said. “You can go to any focal length, and it will stay in focus. That's important to installers and makes sure the focus is always crisp.”

The dome's lens must also have enough resolution to support the image sensor. As higher resolution is seen mostly in fixed network domes, standard definition (SD) lenses will not focus light properly on image sensors with more pixels. This will result in blurred edges and loss of corner detail.

Full high definition resolution at 1080p is 16:9 or 2.1 megapixel, which is a wider aspect ratio compared to 4:3 in SD. “The corner detail needs to have sufficient TVLs,” said Allen Yang, PM at Etrovision Technology.

Bubb le Trouble One of the easiest ways to distinguish a dome's quality is by looking at the dome bubble. “Bubbles are made of either polycarbonate for superior strength or acrylic for superior clarity,” Crosby said. “Acrylic allows for the greatest performance with IR illumination. Both low-light and IR performances are affected by any tinting that the bubble may have. The more tinted, the more covert, but the lower the sensitivity.”

Under normal conditions, customers prefer smoked bubbles, but clear domes are accepted for outdoors, Atsushi said.

Corrall agreed, noting that many people do not expect an effect from smoked bubbles. “It can be like viewing through sunglasses.”

The bubble should be as flawless as possible, so the camera has a clear view no matter where the lens is pointing. “Under high magnification, a dome cannot lose focus,” Huang said. “A commercial bubble may work at 20x, but does not work at a higher magnification.”

A bubble's material determines where it can be used. “A town center is different from a petrochemical site; it could be polycarbonate, lexan or stainless steel,” Pigram said. “Whether it's curved, plastic or glass makes a big difference for the optical quality.”

The bubble must be easy to install as well. Some vendors include a cord or insurance line attaching the bubble to the back box, so it does not accidentally get dropped and break.

[NextPage]Speed Dome Differentiators
Speed domes do not have the field-of-view limits of fixed domes, as most can pan up to 400 degrees per second. However, being fast is not always a plus. “If you put a dome in a location, set it to patrol and it moves too fast, you cannot capture details,” Yang said.

Considerations include preset accuracy, response to controls,masking and zoom ratios, Pigram said.

The biggest challenges for moving domes are the camera module and power supply. Waterproofing must be noted, as moisture may seep into the power supply and cause failure, or fog up the bubble with droplets, Chang said. Indoor domes may overheat and fail with processors, image sensors and pan-tilt driver units in close proximity, so the dome's construction material should be noted.

Speed domes must have reliable operation, Smith said. Some speed domes enable automatic tracking, which is helpful if an operator is not present. However, possible false alarms make auto-tracking domes suited for less busy scenes.

Motor Motion
The weakest point in speed and PTZ domes is the pan-tilt driver for accurate positioning, particularly for network domes. “We try to match IP domes to analog speed dome accuracy,” Atsushi said. “A few years ago, no one could achieve it, but now it is nearly the same.”

Other key criteria for speed domes are the maximum and minimum speeds, along with the number of steps, Crosby said. The acceleration and deceleration curves will affect how quickly the dome moves to maximum speed, slows to minimum speed and when it sets its position. Speed domes should be equipped with a reliable slip ring.

Some countries require privacy masks to be set over homes or sensitive areas. “Privacy zones are also an important consideration, especially for public-space installations where residential units are in close proximity to the areas being monitored,” Smith said.

PTZ Differentiators
PTZ cameras allow for features such as IR illumination. One advantage of the PTZ is the flat glass, Pigram said. “You don't get the distortion and internal reflection that you get from a curved surface.” The flat glass also improves clarity, as wipers can be added.

However, PTZ is not ideal for high-resolution imaging. “The trouble with anything high-resolution is it exaggerates and amplifies the problems you have,” Pigram said. “You have to make that choice if you want a dome or move to a bullet-style camera. If it's a very challenging application at night or you need to see real resolution, you need to take the lens and bubble into consideration.”

Speed domes and PTZ cameras are auto-focus cameras, Atsushi said. Advances in consumer recorders have been adapted to auto-focus lenses for surveillance cameras, keeping images clear despite the changing point of view.

[NextPage]Soft Powers
In-house design can reduce cost for the PTZ camera block, which is usually the most expensive component. “Our own R&D allows us to control cost, and feature development is not limited by thirdparty vendors,” said Garrett Li, Marketing Manager for DynaColor.

Beyond components,good software affects dome image quality as well. Manufacturers A and B may use the same DSP and an identical image sensor, but still get different results. “I can show you two cameras using the same hardware but running different software, and the images can look like they're from two completely different cameras,” Corrall said. “Without quality software inside the camera, the quality of the components used doesn't really matter.”

Image stabilization is required to correct the vibration while the PTZ is moving, Corrall added. “A user-friendly interface helps installers save time while setting presets.”

Balancing Act
Selecting the best dome is not rocket science, but the fastest processor, most sensitive image sensor and best dome drive will add up to major sticker shock. As most applications do not require comprehensive functionality, actual usage considerations will determine what dome can deliver at an acceptable price point. Product quality and reliability remain essential for value no matter what the price is, but different components will result in different costs.

Dome selection boils down to site and budget considerations. Some of the same issues also apply to IP domes, which have gained market share. In our next article, we examine performance concerns for network-enabled domes.

Quality Domes Hold No Viewing Limits Ⅰ

Quality Domes Hold No Viewing Limits Ⅰ

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 3/25/2011 | Article type: Tech Corner

What makes a dome good? A&S examines performance and installation issues to illustrate how fixed, speed and PTZ domes make the cut in an increasingly IP-enabled world.

Dome cameras are characterized by their distinctive bubbles, offering installers an extra option for demanding sites. They can be adapted for different applications, depending on user requirements and monitoring purposes.

Fixed domes are much like box cameras, except for a rounded form factor for easy installation and aesthetics. Mostly deployed for indoor surveillance, installers can adjust fixed domes for lens position, viewing angle and focus. Once the dome is installed, operators can only view a set area.

Speed and PTZ domes overcome the viewing limitations of fixed domes. They can monitor specific scenes or targets by size, position or both. Other uses for speed and PTZ domes include patrolling specific routes at a set time, or integration with intrusion detection for alarm verification.

PTZ cameras are not always housed in bubbles, offering more lens options and camera functions. However, they are usually larger, heavier and pricier than speed domes. As speed domes are housed in a single unit, they have a smaller form factor, more mounting options and greater pricing flexibility.

Ease of Installation
Regardless of dome type, the cameras must be easy to install. As most domes are suspended from ceilings or poles, they require installers to climb ladders, or utilize basket cranes or cherry pickers. This altitude limits the time and amount of tools installers can use placing the dome, which can be quite heavy, said Rich Huang , PM at EverFocus Electronics.

Installation is a two-step process for most domes. “Construction and industrial design affect performance,” said Alf Chang, Senior Consultant for A&S magazines and a former integrator. First, the housing is placed,and then the camera is fitted into the back box and enclosure.

The mount, or where the camera attaches to the back box, has a crucial effect on performance, Chang said. Metal mounts tend to be too rigid and cause too much interference. Plastic mounts can be too soft and loose, which may result in the camera dropping out of the mount and landing in the bubble. Understanding what materials a dome is made of can reduce maintenance calls.

Reliability is another benchmark of a good dome. “We look at good value for money, whether it's for the top-end, medium or budget applications,” said Andrew Pigram, Technical Director at Norbain. “But you can't sell rubbish to anyone.”

[NextPage]Fixed Dome Differentiators
Fixed dome selection looks at image quality, resolution, progressive or interlaced, and sensitivity, Pigram said. “Linked to those is whether you have a sophisticated DSP with noise reduction, which is related to performance.”

A dome's back-box construction will affect heat dissipation. “Too many ICs will overheat the camera and shorten its lifespan,” Chang said. Inferior materials will also cause interference, such as a bad lens connector, which should be inspected before purchase.

One way to infer how hot a dome might get is by looking at power usage. “Low power consumption is important to save power, but also for thermal operation,” said Jeff Corrall, Product Line Manager for Edge Devices, March Networks. “If you heat up a camera, it could malfunction. Or it may function properly, but its overall life cycle is reduced if the components are outside temperature specifications.”

A more prosaic benchmark is the dome's ability to lock position, said Ian Crosby, Product Marketing Manager for CCTV, Bosch Security Systems. The better the dome stays put, the better it will prevent shock and vibration effects.

Processors
A dome's processor determines its functionality. As chips have gotten faster and smaller, more features are now built into dome cameras, such as slow shutter, wide dynamic, Sens-up or digital noise reduction. “Some features are better on the edge, but they will depend on your computing power,” Huang said. “You need to select a faster or bigger CPU for analytics.”

A dome line may be divided into high-end and budget models by DSP. “Security is a relatively low-volume business, but requires many types of cameras,” Huang said.

Axis designs its own ASIC chip and this gives the company an edge in the market, said Erik Fr?nnlid, Director of Product Management, Axis Communications. Its processor features software for image correction, such as a corridor format that optimizes scenes that are more vertical than horizontal, such as hallways or tunnels. Modular designs and use of the latest technologies, as well as good forecasting and planning, allow Axis to source components in large quantities, which keeps prices manageable, Fr?nnlid added.

Samsung Techwin also has its own semiconductor foundry, using the same DSP chipset for its dome range. “We have ranges of both analog and network domes, including megapixel versions, arriving very soon,” said James Smith, European Marketing Manager.

[NextPage]Image Sensors
Another deciding factor in dome selection is the image sensor. Whether the sensor comes with an image processor will affect image quality, along with the sensor 's format, Chang said.

Resolution and frame rate are considerations in sensor selection. “Low-light performance is also important,” Corrall said. Global shutter on CMOS chips has better image results compared to rolling shutter.

However, CCD sensors still outperform CMOS ones in most low-light conditions. “For image sensors for fixed domes, good low-light performance requires CCDs,” Huang said. “But as CMOS improves, that will change.”

To differentiate, some vendors develop their own image sensors, while making themselves less vulnerable to sourcing fluctuations from component suppliers. “We provide image sensors for both CCD and CMOS,” said Iida Atsushi, PM of Security Solutions, Business and Professional Products for APAC, Sony Electronics. Pan-tilt mechanisms are also made in-house, saving sourcing time; on the other hand, they add to development cost.

The line between CCD and CMOS is almost always drawn at resolution, with analog and network domes delivering different results. “An analog image is interlaced, so if an analog dome is connected to an encoder, you only see about 400 TVLs,” said Caroline Kuan, Marketing Specialist at DynaColor.“IP domes are at least 600 TVLs, which make a difference in image quality.”

True network cameras use progressive scan, Fr?nnlid added.

Avigilon Surveillance System Integrates with HRM's IT and Security Infrastructure

Avigilon Surveillance System Integrates with HRM's IT and Security Infrastructure

Editor / Provider: Avigilon | Updated: 1/20/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

Avigilon, a supplier of HD and megapixel video surveillance systems, announced that the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) has deployed the Avigilon HD surveillance system on the ferry transit system at several recreation centers and at a metro transit service garage to protect its critical assets. The surveillance system was selected for its management features and ability to integrate with HRM’s existing IT infrastructure, intrusion and access control systems.

“HRM owns millions of dollars’ worth of assets and property that are accessible to the public, so it is vital that we ensure that they are protected and used properly, while also ensuring the safety of the people who routinely use our facilities,” said Randy Stoddard, Manager of Corporate Security at HRM. “Offering an IP-based, HD surveillance solution, Avigilon was chosen for its performance capabilities and because it could leverage our existing network and integrate with our intrusion and access control systems to facilitate installation, reduce costs and meet IT standards across the board.”

HRM security personnel manage the surveillance system using Avigilon control center NVMS. The municipality installed more than 200 megapixel Avigilon HD cameras. These cameras have been installed at three recreation centers, wirelessly on three ferry boats and their corresponding transit terminals and at its new metro transit service garage, which also has an Avigilon 180-degree panoramic HD dome camera. Monitoring traffic flow and protecting assets are the primary security goals at both the recreation centers and transit garage, while passenger safety is the top priority at the ferries. HRM stores 14 days of footage on 14 servers located across the municipality and monitors the system at a central control room and onsite at each location.

By leveraging existing IT resources, HRM is able to save installation and maintenance costs and migrate over to full HD as network requirements and budget allows. The HD surveillance system can also be integrated into HRM’s intrusion and access control systems to create an integrated security solution. By dedicating a portion of its network to the system, HRM was able to create a wireless surveillance solution for its ferry system, which is connected remotely to the central control room for 24/7 monitoring. With the ability to digitally zoom in for superior image clarity, the surveillance system in many instances replaces the need for a PTZ camera because it can zoom in to capture details without losing the broader field of view. Avigilon control center management features help HRM staff reduce investigation times from hours to minutes.

“As a municipality, HRM encompasses many different types of facilities, from headquarters to transit systems to recreation centers that present different security challenges but all share a common thread: the IT infrastructure,” said Alexander Fernandes, President and CEO at Avigilon. “By deploying the HD surveillance system, which can integrate with its existing IT network, HRM has taken a unified approach to protecting its people, property, and information.”

Bosch Security Systems Watches over UK Fast Food Chains

Bosch Security Systems Watches over UK Fast Food Chains

Editor / Provider: Bosch Security Systems | Updated: 1/17/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

A series of dome cameras from Bosch Security Systems have been installed at a new KFC restaurant in Blackpool following a trial at another location in the town.

The owners of the franchise, that includes three other restaurants, were becoming increasingly frustrated with the existing surveillance systems, so turned to Mark Ashall, Operations Director of Skelmersdale Unique Integrated Systems (UIS) to provide a solution.

Ashall specified a combination of three day/night fixed, vandal-resistant domes to be installed externally and 12 outdoor color fixed domes because of their reliability, image quality and the technical support throughout the installation process. “At first we tested the day/night camera on the ‘drive thru’ - a notoriously difficult area to monitor - and the owner was very impressed,” Ashall said. “When he realized the difference in quality of the images, he wanted Bosch cameras specified throughout.”

Cameras have been positioned at key locations inside the restaurant to protect the premises against theft, break-ins, vandalism and antisocial behavior. Additionally, the traffic entering the ‘drive thru’ is monitored to ensure the main access road is not causing a build up of traffic:

“The quality and clarity of the image offers a versatility which is not found in other cameras,” Ashall said. “Fast food restaurants across the country are blighted by abusive and drunken behavior towards staff and vandalism against the property during the weekend, and these cameras act as a major deterrent.”

Vista Takes Center Stage at Edinburgh Art Festival

Vista Takes Center Stage at Edinburgh Art Festival

Editor / Provider: Vista | Updated: 12/10/2010 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Documenting the spirit of Edinburgh at festival time, the Staged exhibition was made possible by the technical expertise of RemCam and the latest in video surveillance solutions from Vista.

Commissioned through the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund and produced by the Collective Gallery, Staged took place during the Edinburgh Art Festival, and addressed the notion of Edinburgh as a giant stage, via a unique multichannel video installation.

To turn Staged into a reality, artists Kim Coleman and Jenny Hogarth enlisted RemCam to provide a tailored technical solution that would deliver their vision.

Projecting a mixture of live and pre-recorded footage on all four interior walls of Edinburgh’s disused Calton Hill Observatory building, visitors observed a diverse array of images from all parts of the city. Colin McNaughton, Technical Manager at RemCam, explained, “We were approached with a difficult technical challenge, and just three weeks to design, test, and install a CCTV system that would deliver the type of images Kim and Jenny required.”

“To capture images from around Edinburgh, we were able to utilize a Vista demonstration kit,” McNaughton said. “Using a Vista VKBD4 Control Keyboard, Vista VPPH18WP/C PowerDome Pro fully-functional dome camera, and a small HD camcorder to digitally record footage from the camera’s preset tours, Kim and Jenny captured a series of diverse scenes from around the city, for replay at the Observatory.”

In addition to their recorded footage, a Vista VPPH18WP/C PowerDome Pro fully functional dome camera mounted externally at the famous Camera Obscura Museum, adjacent to Edinburgh Castle, supplied live images to the installation via an encrypted wireless link.

“The CCTV images were fundamental to the installation, and their quality and reliability crucial,” said Mark Pritchard, Vista’s divisional director. “The Vista PowerDome Pro cameras captured consistently high-quality images in a variety of difficult lighting conditions — from dimly lit city interiors, to panoramic landscapes of the Edinburgh sky line. Overall the installation was a great technical and artistic success.”

Growing Profits in Lean Times PartⅠ

Growing Profits in Lean Times PartⅠ

Editor / Provider: by a&s International | Updated: 11/30/2010 | Article type: Security 50

While the recession has increased budget offerings and driven prices down, a number of companies still managed to grow their profits. We find out more about their growth factors and differentiators for success.

Staying profitable was no easy task in the dire financial climate. Yet a number of companies were able to increase their profit in 2009. We take a look at the Top 10 Companies for Profit Growth to see how they managed to boost profits in lean times.

Most companies scaled back their profit growth projections due to the financial slowdown. While no Security 50 manufacturer lowered their profit goals, the average profit loss was 4.2 percent in 2009.

Eight of the Top 10 profit growers were in video surveillance, including network video providers Mobotix, IndigoVision, Milestone Systems and Axis Communications. Asia had a strong showing, with Dahua Technology, Hikvision Digital Technology, Hi Sharp Electronics and C-Pro Electronics boosting profit margins. The remaining two companies were biometric providers L-1 Identity Systems and RCG, with all 10 companies posting double-digit profit growth.

As the Security 50 participants averaged profit losses, Mobotix's profit growth of 32.9 percent is all the more astonishing, leading the Top 10 Companies for Profit Growth. “The gross profit margin increased due to the positive effects of economy of scale,” said Ralf Hinkel, CEO of Mobotix, in a prepared statement. Positive effects included increased dome camera sales, which rose 58.8 percent and improved profitability.

IndigoVision increased its profits by 29.8 percent, with a gross margin of 64.1 percent. “Gross margins were lower than last year, reflecting a change in sales mix and greater volumes, but the contribution from gross margin grew 30 percent to a record US$26.1 million,” the company said in a prepared statement. Its lower margins were partly due to increased operating costs, which were 24 percent higher at $21 million.

Newcomer Milestone's profit growth of 18.7 percent was nothing to sneeze at, either. “In the U.S., we are doing particularly well in education, transportation, city surveillance and industrial processes; retail is slowly coming back as well,” said Eric Fullerton, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Milestone Systems. “In Asia and Europe, government stimulus packages are put to use in major infrastructure projects that require constant monitoring — and in large quantities of surveillance cameras.”

For L-1 Identity Solutions, its gross margin fell slightly to 29.4 percent in 2009, from 30 percent. “The decrease was due to changes in the revenue mix resulting from lower biometric revenues and higher revenues from secure credentialing and services,” L-1 said in a prepared statement.

Innovation
The industry is headed in two directions: solutions for vertical-specific applications and low-end products. For this year's profit growers, solutions were clearly the way forward.

Adding solutions in HD and outdoor cameras helped Axis stay profitable in 2009. It commits 13 percent of its revenue to R&D, with thermal imaging being the company's next differentiator. “New products — some 20 in 2009 — definitely contributed to our growth,” said Ray Mauritsson, President of Axis Communications. “In terms of vendor alliances, partner programs such as ONVIF also contributed to growth and profit.”

Mobotix is equally committed to product development, with a staff of 53 employees and an R&D budget worth $5.5 million in 2009. It switched to a new processor last year that doubled computing power for four camera lines, the company said in a prepared statement. However, this required mechanically adjusting products and delaying new launches, with all production taking place in Germany.

RCG's complete lineup of RFID and biometrics for access control helped solidify its margin. “RCG invests significantly in R&D every year,” said Dato' Lee Boon Han, CEO of RCG. “Our R&D team designs innovative products and solutions to meet various market demands. With our business operating for 11 years, we offer a diverse portfolio of products and services that sets RCG apart from its competitors, which is key to the company's growth and ongoing success.”

Education
For software provider Milestone Systems, training is essential for channel partners. Without training, installers and users will not reap the full benefits of a management solution. “For cost and efficiency reasons, we started working with Connex International for specialized training in the U.S. in 2009, and this year we decided to invest some money in the company, for better presales and product training services worldwide at a lower cost to us,” Fullerton said.

Milestone previously conducted the training in-house, but found Connex could do the same much more quickly in the U.S. “We charge distributors and system integrators for these training sessions, but they get to take away and sell complimentary software licenses that are easily worth two times what they pay for,” Fullerton said. “Connex offers at least eight hands-on labs and classes per week, and with each class serving eight to 12 trainees, thousands can be certified in a year — much more cost-effectively than what we can do ourselves.”

Find More 2010 Security 50 Articles :

Asia Weathers the Storm

Growing Profits in Lean Times Part Ⅱ

Bucking the Downward Trend: Top 10 Revenue Growers of 2009

● Security 50's Top Performers Rise Above the Fray Part Ⅱ

● Security 50's Top Performers Rise Above the Fray Part Ⅰ

Rainbow Surveillance Cameras Displayed at Chicago Convention Center

Rainbow Surveillance Cameras Displayed at Chicago Convention Center

Editor / Provider: Rainbow CCTV | Updated: 10/8/2010 | Article type: Government & Public Services

HD vandal-resistant color dome cameras from Rainbow CCTV are being used at a convention center in Rosemont, a suburb of Chicago.

The 550-TVL units have a 4- to 9-mm lens and are protected from attack by a tough aluminium housing and polycarbonate dome. 350 cameras have been installed by local integrator Omni-1 Electronics, with the principal aim of the surveillance being to promote visitor and delegate safety at the convention center which is to the north west of Chicago in the metropolitan area's “Golden Corridor.”

The distributor, who has been active in the project at every stage, is Windy City Wire. “This is a major hub for trade shows and management wanted to make optimum use of surveillance,” said John Callahan of Windy City. “We were able to liaise closely with Omni-1 Electronics who work throughout the convention center and the Rosemont airport village area. An initial consideration was the ‘IP or analog' debate and we recommended this DC auto-iris model.”

The cameras give visitors and staff reassurance in public areas and walkways as well as guarding against theft from parking garages. Footage is transmitted to a recording bay of up to 30 digital recorders and compression algorithms allow remote monitoring by the center's management as well as civic authorities.

The Donald E. Stephens Convention Center features 840,000 square feet of exhibition space for trade fairs and public shows. A sky bridge connects the convention center to three hotels. The facility was renamed to honor Donald E. Stephens, an Illinois Republican politician, who founded the village of Rosemont in the 1950s and served as its mayor for half a century.

Hikvision Mobile Surveillance Keep Chinese City Buses Safe

Hikvision Mobile Surveillance Keep Chinese City Buses Safe

Editor / Provider: Hikvision | Updated: 9/7/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

The Ningbo city bus mobile surveillance project, one of the transportation installations in China, covers more than 3,600 buses belonging to 14 transportation companies in Ningbo city.

The Ningbo Transportation Department faced many of the common problems with security on their buses. They needed to protect their assets and provide passengers and drivers safety and security. Their security system needed to provide evidence in the event of theft or injury, helping to settle disputes between passengers and staff.

The surveillance system had to support high-quality video playback and store video data tracing back to two weeks ago. Antishock technology was adopted to ensure normal function of the mobile surveillance system when the bus is in motion. Hikvision provide a mobile solution which consisted of the mobile DVR, backup device and colored dome camera to meet these requirements.

In this elegant mobile surveillance system, four Hikvision cameras were installed separately in the windshield, carriage, front door and exit of each bus providing surveillance coverage of more than 90 percent of the bus.

The camera installed in the windshield mainly monitors whether the drivers go through a red light which would lead to traffic accidents. The camera fixed above the driver monitors whether passengers enter the bus without tickets. The camera in the middle of the bus monitors the security conditions like theft or dispute throughout the bus and the camera at exit keeps an eye on the passenger behavior getting on and off the bus.

This system creates a deterrent effect on criminals as well as unruly passengers, effectively ensuring the safety of the drivers, passengers and their property. In addition, if there are complaints about drivers from the passengers, or dispute between passengers, the related video footage can be retrieved and viewed for reference.

Different from mobile surveillance systems in other cities, the Ningbo city bus surveillance system delivers a high-quality video stream. Using the H.264 video codec, the Hikvision mobile DVR supports real-time viewing and playback with the resolution of up to 4CIF. Moreover, the color dome camera delivers horizontal resolution of 480 TVL, and it also features color and B/W auto switch, ensuring high image quality for 24/7 monitoring.

“As more than 3,600 buses are equipped with surveillance products, it’s unrealistic to pay attention to the on-site status of each bus simultaneously,” said Chongguan Jin, VP of Scientific and Information Department in Ningbo city public transportation head office. “In addition, the real-time video transmission means higher cost. So we chose to store the video data locally for playback and retrieving instead of real-time monitoring in this project at moment.”

To realize high-capability local storage, the Ningbo transportation department chose the hard disk drives with the capability of up to 750 GB each, which can store video data at least 15 days. The Hikvision mobile DVR backup device was also used in this project for video data backup.

“To date, this project has covered most of the public bus routes in Ningbo city,” said Jin. “After evaluation of the products’ utility, stability and reliability by actual use, Hikvision’s products have proven to be superior to the surveillance products that have been used in the buses of other cities in China.”

"The video monitoring system created by Hikvision has improved the security of Ningbo bus transportation routes and dramatically decreased the rate of crime or illegal action on our buses,” said Dezhi Zhu, GM of Ningbo city public transportation head office. “The safety of passengers and their property was ensured, and the service quality of transportation companies also has had a positive change accordingly."

Where Quality is the Operative Word

Where Quality is the Operative Word

Editor / Provider: Submitted by Geutebruck | Updated: 10/4/2010 | Article type: Commercial Markets

.Geutebruck video system supports simulated surgery

In an operating theatre at the German Heart Institute in Berlin, open heart operations are carried out on a sophisticated dummy. A Geutebruck hybrid recorder stores video, audio and metadata, while streaming real-time images and sound to the trainer in the control room and to fellow students in a lecture theatre. Learning to deal with simulated situations may well mean the virtual patient dies but real lives are saved in future.

Here in this academy for cardio-technology, surgeons, anesthetists and cardio technicians practice open heart surgery on a special medical torso, complete with beating heart and simulated responses to different drug treatments and interventions. In a fully equipped operating theater they learn new procedures and are given realistic practical training in dealing with the kind of unexpected problems which occur in practice.

The re_porter-based video system designed and installed by Berlin-based Alarmsysteme Richter & Co. is integral to the training process. It enables a trainer to realistically control the dummy and the operating theater equipment remotely; it allows operations to be observed live and in close-up from a nearby lecture room; and it enables the participants themselves to review, analyse and learn much more from their experience.

In the operating theatre a GSD-671 high resolution indoor dome camera focuses on the operation site, while a megapixel camera provides pictures of the surrounding activity. Testing the dome camera's zoom lens for themselves, the doctors found to their satisfaction that it could provide large razor sharp images of the 1mm tall lettering on their surgical instruments, and that it could instantly autofocus on the indistinctly shaped heart. — In contrast to conventional cameras, this auto-focus function works even when there are no sharp edges in the image.

The medical trainer who sits in the control room behind a glass partition has all the video pictures and sound from the re-porter system. He controls the machinery and events in the theatre by mouse click on a screen and by talking to the surgical team via their headsets. As a result he is able to simulate all kinds of scenarios many of which put the patient in critical danger and the surgical team under considerable pressure. Better, so goes the philosophy, for the heart-lung machine to break down here and the patient die, but learn from the experience, than meet the situation for the first time with a real patient on the operating table.

After the operation synchronised video and sound recordings enable participants to analyse their actions step by step, and edited clips may be readily incorporated into PowerPoint presentations for teaching purposes.

In the nearby lecture theatre a lecturer provides other trainees with commentary on the procedure as it is carried out. On the display screens he can bring up pictures from both cameras as well as the medical equipment data which is also handled by the re_porter system.

Although the re_porter is a product with high-end technology designed for security applications it Alarmsysteme Richter and Co.'s choice for media and presentation systems projects too. “Where high quality solutions are required it can't be beaten on performance or price,” Richter said. “We have been doing an increasing amount of business in this area and use re_porter because it provides excellent value for money.”

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Infinova Surveillance Solution Helps Chinese Power Plant Move to IP

Infinova Surveillance Solution Helps Chinese Power Plant Move to IP

Editor / Provider: Infinova | Updated: 7/12/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Infinova announced western China’s 3 million KW Ertan Hydroelectric Power Plant has implemented Infinova’s VMS to begin a gradual migration to a digital video solution. The software controls all of the plant’s network cameras as well as leveraging selected analog systems, such as the interface to the fire alarm system. In addition, Infinova cameras are located in all areas of the plant.

"This installation is a perfect example of how the Infinova VMS makes it possible for IP and analog surveillance cameras and equipment to coexist and be managed as a single seamless solution,” said Mark Wilson, Infinova Marketing VP. “It lets customers extend the life of their existing analog equipment by having the new IP solution operate side-by-side with their existing analog system.”

At Ertan, the VMS platform uses an IP SAN for centralized storage and a RAID 5 disk array to increase the storage capacity and to ensure continuity and reliability for the long-term storage archives.

The surveillance system also integrates with the plant’s existing Honeywell fire alarm system including IR detectors. The plant’s original analog video system used an Infinova alarm interface unit to connect the fire alarm system to the surveillance system. The VMS was able to extend its life by using the same interface. When the alarm system generates an alarm, the Infinova platform switches the video from the camera closest to the alarm detector to the command center monitor.

Infinova cameras monitor many different environments. For instance, the high risk areas need HD cameras to provide HD videos and evidence. Therefore, Infinova day/night network PTZ cameras were selected for general and patrol surveillance of open areas. For specific objects requiring constant surveillance, the plant chose Infinova day/night network cameras.

All cameras support MPEG-4/M-JPEG dual encoding technology and dual streaming with a high resolution stream for live viewing and a lower resolution stream for archiving or for remote users’ low bandwidth connections. In addition, the cameras support PoE, which reduces construction costs and improves reliability.

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