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Axis launches AXIS Camera Station S10 Recorder Series

Axis launches AXIS Camera Station S10 Recorder Series

Editor / Provider: Axis | Updated: 9/30/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Axis Communications announces AXIS Camera Station S10 Recorder Series. AXIS Camera Station is preloaded on high-quality servers and configured to perfectly match Axis' wide range of network cameras, providing both ease of installation and reliability.

AXIS Camera Station S10 Recorder Series consists of:
• AXIS S1016, workstation model for use in office environments for installations up to 16 video channels
• AXIS S1032, rack server model for installations of up to 32 video channels
• AXIS S1048, rack server model for installations of up to 48 video channels

AXIS Camera Station video management software is pre-installed. The software offers an intuitive user interface with features to meet the demand for effective and active surveillance such as a flexible live view layout, site maps, powerful event configuration, efficient alarm management and responsive PTZ control. System settings such as camera and storage are configured to further simplify system setup and maximize performance.

Hardware components such as hard-discs, graphic card and CPUs, as well as storage capacity are optimized to meet the demands for reliable high-definition surveillance. To further safeguard system uptime, the package includes hardware and software support for three years.

Further features of AXIS Camera Station S10 Recorder Series include:
• Pre-installed system software such as Windows 7
• The recorders are easily scalable with additional AXIS Camera Station licenses
• Support for multiple screens
• AXIS Camera Station S9001 Desktop Terminal available as an option

AXIS Camera Station S10 Recorder Series is expected to be available in the US, Canada in October and in EU countries in December 2014 through Axis' distribution channels. Suggested retail price for AXIS S1016 is $3999, AXIS S1032 is $10999 and AXIS S1048 is $15999.

Hikvision adds 6 megapixel IP camera to SMART range

Hikvision adds 6 megapixel IP camera to SMART range

Editor / Provider: Hikvision | Updated: 9/29/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Hikvision's range of Smart IP cameras is boosted with the launch of the ultra-high-resolution DS-2CD4065F-(A) Network Box Camera. This industry-leading design boasts a large 6 megapixel sensor that delivers razor-sharp 3072 x 2048 images at 25 fps. This model is capable of delivering real-time full HD 1080p video streams at 60 fps, and sustaining up to 20 concurrent live-view channels.

"The introduction of this camera would definitely drive picture imaging to another new height," states Keen Yao, International Marketing Director at Hikvision, "Hikvision is the very first to bring this technology to the security world. As a real breakthrough in HD security, this camera will greatly improve user's experience on video image quality."

Real-time high resolution images
The 6.0 megapixel video at 25 fps will be especially suited to applications requiring highly detailed surveillance. For instance, rather than blanketing a parking lot with low resolution VGA cameras, a single DS-2CD4065F-(A) would be able to cover the entire area. The high resolution and quality lenses also means there is sufficient detail to capture license plate information, clothing and faces that would help law enforcement. Furthermore, its 1/1.8" progressive scan CMOS helps to ensure true colour reproduction of images captured day and night.

Smart features
The DS-2CD4065F-(A) also shares a raft of high-end features with Hikvision's existing Smart IP cameras, including 3D Digital Noise Reduction, Super WDR, auto-switching ICR and electronic image stabilization. Its advanced encoding algorithm streams images at a very low bitrate without compromising quality, compared to traditional cameras, the new Hikvision Smart camera enhances image quality by up to 30% while minimizing the system's load and storage requirements. Smart IP camera technology also delivers increased detection functionalities, such as Face Detection, Audio Detection, Line Crossing Detection and Video Quality Detection, so as to automatically trigger an alarm in case of an exceptional event happens.

Choice of lenses
The DS-2CD4065F-(A) may also be optionally fitted with Hikvision's renowned HV3816D-8MPIR and HV1140D-8MPIR ultra-low-light MP vari-focal lenses. Both lenses feature 8 megapixel resolutions, IR correction and a minimum aperture of 1.5, allowing users to choose from a focal-range of 3.8-16 mm with the HV3816D-8MPIR or 11-40 mm with the HV1140D-8MPIR.

Available models
The (A) version - DS-2CD4065F-A also features for enhanced performance, reliability and cost effectiveness. The additional ABF (Auto Back Focus) feature automatically adjusts the CMOS position to focus the camera to maintain clear, sharp images and compensates when changing from color to b/w mode or when switching in or out the IR cut filter.

N.America foodservice giant deployed March Networks surveillance systems

N.America foodservice giant deployed March Networks surveillance systems

Editor / Provider: March Networks | Updated: 9/26/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Compass Group North America is a leading foodservice management company with annual sales over $12 billion and more than 200,000 associates. Its operating companies, including Morrison Healthcare, Bon Appétit Management, Levy Restaurants and Wolfgang Puck Catering, serve more than seven million meals a day in schools, hospitals, senior living communities, corporate campuses and sporting venues across the U.S. and Canada.

Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, Compass Group North America has the privilege of serving such prestigious clients as Microsoft, IBM, United Technologies Corp., SAP, Louisiana State University, Texas A&M University and the District of Columbia Public Schools. In addition, Compass Group provides catering to special events such as the US Open and the Academy Awards.

The group's success in the foodservice business relies on getting a lot of things right —from procurement and logistics to the preparation of nutritious, palate-pleasing food. Dedicated, trustworthy associates and satisfied customers are critical, but so too are loss prevention and an effective means of operational oversight.

Compass Group North America began deploying March Networks video surveillance systems in 2008 and currently has them installed in some 300 foodservice sites.

Chris McDonald, Senior Vice-President of Loss Prevention, joined the group in April 2012 by which time its loss prevention strategy was “pretty much already in place,” he said. “I was familiar with several different video surveillance systems, but had never dealt with March Networks and wasn't familiar with its technology. However, it didn't take me long to become a big fan. We've had really good success with it.”

 Valuable Video Evidence
Compass Group has a mix of 8000 Series and 4000 C hybrid networked video recorders and uses both analog and IP cameras to cover cash registers, food storage areas and back doors. Loss prevention staff in Atlanta rely on a third-party exception reporting system to alert them to potentially suspicious point-of-sale (POS) transactions and use the March Networks video surveillance system to view the associated video.

Performance metrics are also tracked to alert management to potential issues.

“For example, if we see that we're buying more food than we're producing, we'll start watching video,” said McDonald.

Unusual sales patterns are also cause for concern, prompting loss prevention staff to pay special attention to no-sales, voids and other potentially suspicious POS transactions flagged by the exception reporting system. Using video surveillance to view the actual transactions can provide McDonald's team with the evidence they need to take action against a dishonest cashier.

Video also allows the loss prevention team to monitor compliance with company policies for cashier accountability. As is the case in most retail environments, cashiers have their own cash drawers or unique log-ins which allow management to identify the cashier responsible for every transaction. Sharing log-ins defeats the purpose, but can be easily detected using video.

The same applies to the company's policy of always requiring two people present for cash counting during the completion of a shift, but as McDonald has discovered, having two people in the same room isn't always sufficient.

Video illustrating any lapses helps to improve compliance and is used by Compass Group for training purposes.

Operational Oversight
Traditionally, Compass Group has used video surveillance almost exclusively as a loss prevention tool, said McDonald. “We'd install cameras over the cash registers, the safe and the freezer door to make sure no one was stealing cash or inventory. There hasn't been a big focus on using video surveillance for operational oversight, but that's a direction we're moving in, especially with our Morrison Healthcare division.

“We're installing more cameras to provide us with an overview of the retail operation, the food preparation and dining areas and will be doing more video audits. Managers will be able to see, for example, if the salad bar is presentable after 12:30 in the afternoon and if the lettuce bowl is full — things like that, so even if they're offsite for the day, they'll be able to check in remotely on their laptops and see how things are going.”

Installing video surveillance systems in its foodservice locations can be complicated given the fact that Compass Group is typically operating under someone else's roof, explains McDonald.

There is also a wide range of scenarios — from seven day per week, public facing operations in a hospital, for example, to five day per week corporate cafés in restricted access campuses.

“Multiple permissions are invariably required to install video surveillance in one of our foodservice locations,” said McDonald. “We have to consult with HR, security and legal if we're capturing video of their employees. Then we have to go to IT because we have to pull cable. We try to demonstrate what we expect in terms of ROI and reduced number of incidents. We also sell them on the customer service benefit.”

This year alone, according to McDonald, 30 additional Compass Group sites have been equipped with March Networks video surveillance systems. For these and other more recent deployments, Compass Group is acquiring March Networks 8000 Series Hybrid NVRs, which come in 4-, 8-, 16- and 32-channel configurations and allow for the transition from 100 % analog to 100% IP cameras.

Convenient Browser-Based Client
Also underway is a transition from March Networks Visual Intelligence software to the company's new browser-based Command Enterprise video man­agement system, which can support up to 10,000 video recorders and 128,000 video channels in multisite applications.

“With Command, we don't need software loaded on each computer terminal, so it's a lot more convenient,” said McDonald. “We don't have to get IT involved as much or worry about updating software.”

Compass Group recently transitioned to March Networks Managed Services for tier one telephone support and monitoring of system performance.

The March Networks Managed Services team makes sure that the recorders and cameras are operating properly and dispatch system integrators if onsite maintenance is required.

“I don't have any issues at all with the technical support we have received,” said McDonald. “I've never had a question March Networks technicians couldn't answer or a problem they couldn't solve.

“We're very happy with the reliability of our March Networks technology and excited about how it can continue to contribute to our success, not only as a loss prevention tool, but as a means of ensuring the quality food service our customers have come to expect from us.”

FLIR announces AX8 thermal imager for industrial automation

FLIR announces AX8 thermal imager for industrial automation

Editor / Provider: FLIR | Updated: 9/25/2014 | Article type: Security 50

FLIR Systems, announced the launch of its new AX8 fixed-mount thermal imager. Combining thermal and visible cameras along with FLIR's proprietary MSX® technology in a small, affordable package, the AX8 is easy to install in space-constrained areas for automated and uninterrupted condition monitoring of critical electrical and mechanical equipment.

Enabled by FLIR's ground-breaking Lepton® micro thermal imaging camera core, the AX8 provides early detection of temperature-related issues in electrical and mechanical equipment, guarding against unplanned outages, service interruptions, equipment failure, and fire. The AX8 is the ideal sensing solution for continuous condition monitoring and early fire detection without the need for periodic manual scans.

The AX8 thermal imager has 4,800 active temperature points per image, provides streaming temperature data over industry-standard interfaces (Ethernet/IP and Modbus TCP) for easy analysis, has a built-in web interface, and includes a full suite of Analysis and Alarm functions that automatically send alerts when the AX8 detects elevated temperatures.

Measuring only 54 x 25 x 95 mm, the AX8 integrates easily into electrical installations or any manufacturing environment. The AX8's streaming thermal, visual, and MSX video is output in standard MJPEG, MPEG, H.264 formats, adding multipurpose image capabilities.

With all of these features in a compact form factor, the FLIR AX8 addresses the condition monitoring and safety needs for many environments, including:
* Process and manufacturing industries
* Data centers
* Energy generation and distribution
* Transportation and mass transit
* Storage facilities
* Refrigeration warehouses
* Engine rooms

"With the AX8, FLIR is continuing to find new and innovative uses for its increasingly-more affordable thermal imaging technologies," saidAndy Teich, FLIR's President and CEO. "The AX8 is another example of how our new Lepton core's revolutionary price, size, and low power consumption is creating a new product category and corresponding applications."

At a groundbreaking price of $995 USD, the AX8 is debuting at the Security Essen tradeshow from September 23rd through September 26thin Essen, Germany and will be available for global order and delivery in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Honeywell announces its newest solutions at Security Essen

Honeywell announces its newest solutions at Security Essen

Editor / Provider: Honeywell | Updated: 9/24/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Honeywell announces its newest solutions showcased at Security Essen.  Honeywell's comprehensive product and solutions portfolio will be presented and include MB-Secure, a multifunctional and modular security control system, MB-Wireless Reed magnetic contact module, equIP Series S range of IP system cameras and Pro-Watch 4.2 enterprise access control system.

Honeywell's new MB-Secure platform is a multifunctional and modular design security control system that enables integration of intrusion detection, access control, and video within a single system. It includes a special licensing concept providing flexibility and ease of use. All MB-Secure control systems are equipped with a uniform circuit board and firmware. Individual required functions can be activated by installers with a license key via a web portal. Should security requirements change, installers can easily apply additional expansions and new areas, detector groups and subsections. This makes it easy to apply upgrades without the need for major changes or a complete control system replacement. A variety of custom-fit, intelligent security solutions can be implemented to suit a wide range of industries: the industrial sector, retail, banking and finance, public buildings, sports facilities, and museums.

Giving security installers a much wider range of options for commercial video surveillance installations, Honeywell also presents 14 new HD and Mega Pixel IP cameras to its equIP Series. The equIP Series S is a family of IP-ready products – including box cameras, IR indoor domes and rugged domes – that integrate with Honeywell and third-party network video recorders (NVRs) for complete video management. The new cameras deliver full HD video (up to 25 fps) with 720p, 1080p, 3MP or 5MP resolution for applications from small retail outlets all the way up to large systems for city centre surveillance. All of the cameras feature on-board micro SD card storage to help prevent video loss by storing locally when communication to the NVR or video service is off-line. The equIP Series S features P-Iris that provides sharper images with better clarity and contrast by optimising the depth of field and sensitivity most suited to any application.

Honeywell MB-Wireless Reed magnetic contact module gives users a whole new range of possibilities for high-quality security. The contact is ideal for monitoring windows and doors, and also easily used to secure and monitor objects such as cabinets, drawers and pictures. The clear advantages of the magnetic reed contact lie in the monitoring of moving or variable fittings and objects, for example at trade shows and exhibitions, temporary monitoring of buildings and tool depots.

Honeywell Pro-Watch security management system offers an access control system that allows integrators to cost effectively accommodate virtually any access control need. The latest version Pro-Watch 4.2 is compatible with multiple biometric reader options, along with added support for several brands and types of wireless locks – including options from Allegion (AD-400 Series), Assa Abloy (Aperio Line), and Salto (Sallis and SVN) – that enable the system to protect previously hard-to-reach doors and locations.

Tyco unveils breadth of technology portfolio at Essen 2014

Tyco unveils breadth of technology portfolio at Essen 2014

Editor / Provider: Tyco | Updated: 9/24/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Tyco Security Products, part of Tyco, the world's largest pure-play fire protection and security company, will showcase a new slate of innovative technology introductions on stand 128, Hall 1.0. at this week's Security Essen 2014 exhibition, 23 to 26 September.

“The growing complexities of the security environment, whether within a large enterprise or at a single location, are demanding intuitive yet sophisticated solutions that allow users to focus on the management of their security department or business,” said Phil Dashey, Vice President and General Manager, EMEA, Tyco Security Products. “The seamless unifications between our products enable security personnel to make quick and informed decisions, whilst avoiding integration challenges.”

With its expanding video portfolio, Tyco Security Products continues to lead the market in offering a diverse set of high resolution IP camera, recording and management platforms from its American Dynamics and Exacq Technologies brands. New from American Dynamics is the VideoEdge and victor v4.5 flagship video management system (VMS) solution, which brings new analytics capabilities such as heat mapping and POS integration with ease of use functionalities like auto discovery and watermarking.

Exacq is introducing the EasyConnect automatic IP camera connector feature that allows users to find, address and connect multiple IP cameras to their network automatically. EasyConnect supports IP cameras from Illustra and several other leading IP camera brands. Exacq will also showcase the new ELP-Series, a line of hybrid and IP camera network video recorders (NVR) available with up to 8 TB of storage to easily view and record up to 16 analogue and 24 IP cameras per server. The latest release of the exacqVision 6.4 VMS introduces VideoPush, which allows users to easily push selected cameras or entire views to another monitor, such as a public display monitor or video wall.

Complementing the array of choices in recording and management platforms is a wide range of HD IP cameras from American Dynamics, including the low-cost Illustra Flex Series, the Illustra Compact Mini-Domes and Mini-Bullets, the industry's fastest Illustra 625 PTZ and the Illustra 825 Fisheye, with onboard de-warping technology.

Headlining the intrusion portfolio for Tyco Security Products is PowerSeries Neo from DSC, an innovative solution for residential and scalable commercial installations that combines the flexibility of a modular, hardwired system with the simplicity of a wide range of wireless devices and peripherals. PowerSeries Neo leverages the superior capabilities of PowerG – the security industry's leading-edge wireless intrusion technology – and features innovative alarm verification solutions, along with a comprehensive remote service software suite for intuitive management.

Visonic is introducing PowerMaster Version 18, based on the market-leading PowerG technology that is the backbone of several new devices, including the PowerMaster-33 “hidden” panel, KP-250 two-way wireless keypad, ultrathin invisible magnetic transmitters, stylish handheld panic buttons and new advanced featured software for the widely installed PM-10 and PM-30 panels. Visonic is also introducing Tower Cam PG2, a wireless outdoor PIR that is a perfect solution for visual alarm verification and advanced warning.

Rounding out the intrusion portfolio is Bentel Security, with the latest 3.50 release of the ABSOLUTA intruder alarm control panel, offering full support via the ABS-IP LAN board for Sur-Gard receiver communications, BOSS programming software for customised email notifications, and ITV2 support for third party integration opportunities. The new ABSOLUTA M-TOUCH touchscreen keypad features a 7” full colour display, and the ABSOLUTA App enables remote control of ABSOLUTA control panels remotely a smartphone using IP or GPRS connection or SMS commands.

CEM Systems will display emerald(tm), the industry's most multifunctional intelligent touch screen terminal, in conjunction with the powerful AC2000 access control and integrated security management system. AC2000 offers customers a resilient security solution that has the flexibility to be customized and integrated to third party systems to suit project needs.

The iSTAR Ultra network door controller from Software House uniquely supports traditional hard-wired access control doors and wireless locksets all in the same controller, up to 32 readers. The newest version of the powerful C•CURE 9000 access control and security management software platform utilizes the victor Unified Client from American Dynamics, enabling users to easily view access control events, video, and intrusion alarms from one central user interface or remotely on the go using C▪CURE Go app.

Rounding out the access control offerings will be the new Kantech Intevo integrated security platform, designed to be up and running in minimal time. It includes a customized dashboard for easy system management and is preloaded with Kantech's EntraPass Corporate Edition security management software and exacqVision video management software.

AXIS: How to improve camera usability with image stabilization?

AXIS: How to improve camera usability with image stabilization?

Editor / Provider: Sponsored by Axis | Updated: 9/23/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Sometimes it doesn't take much to render an otherwise perfect video stream practically worthless. Gusts of wind tearing at a surveillance camera can make it shake or vibrate enough to make images come out as useless blur. A heavy truck, or a train, passing close by can have similar consequences. Most viewers will find it tiring and irritating to watch even a short video clip if it is constantly shaking or wobbling.

A number of different techniques have been developed to cope with the problem, with varying degrees of success. However, the introduction of efficient and affordable gyroscopes in combination with cutting-edge software programming has accelerated the process towards robust, real-time image stabilization.

Vibration impact on video output Improvements in video quality have, somewhat paradoxically, made the problem with blurry images more apparent. Increasing pixel density, higher resolution and more powerful zooms have not only made cameras more sensitive to vibrations but have simultaneously made viewers more susceptible and prone to noticing them.

Naturally, operators and integrators are aware of these challenges and are trying to address them. Vibration may, for instance, be reduced by choosing sturdier mounts or less exposed locations for the installation.

Image stabilization not only brings great improvements in the surveillance operator's working conditions by providing smooth, comfortable live viewing at all times, but also makes an entire video surveillance system more versatile and cost efficient by making better use of each camera's potential, for example by maintaining image quality in zoom shots when vibrations otherwise may have affected the video quality.

At left: A snapshot from a video frame without Electronic Image Stabilization.
At right: Electronic Image Stabilization is activated. Above images demonstrate how Electronic Image Stabilization equalizes the motions from frame to frame resulting in stable motion video.

Benefits and applications in video surveillance
A surveillance camera mounted in an exposed location such as on a high pole or a street sign near a busy road, can be shaken by winds or passing traffic, which will blur the video. Electronic Image Stabilization works excellent regardless of camera lens type. When using a powerful telescopic zoom which zooms in on a distant object, the field of view becomes narrower and any shake or tremble will be amplified in the camera – and the amplitude of the shake will increase proportionally to the amount of zoom used. For a standard lens the challenges can be equivalent, if the camera is mounted in an environment with a high level of vibration. Regardless, image stabilization should be regarded as a prerequisite, so the cameras can be used optimally also in all kinds of circumstances.

Having cameras that are less sensitive to vibrations also makes installation more flexible and allows for multiple mounting options. In the prerequisite end, fewer cameras may be needed to satisfy surveillance requirements.
Further, stabilized images will save bandwidth use and storage space. Advanced video compression formats, such as H.264, are based on motion compensation. In short, this method uses the image of a single frame as a baseline and then only saves information about changes in the picture. A well stabilized image will contain comparatively less movement and thus require less bandwidth and storage.

For operators monitoring the video, Electronic Image Stabilization will make an important difference. Not only will the video material quality be improved, making it easier to see details and use the material to take action or make further analyses. It will also make the time in front of the monitoring screen more comfortable, eliminating fatiguing issues resulting from watching a blurry or vibrating video image.

Today, shakes and vibrations reflect on the results from most of the analytic applications available. However, using Electronic Image Stabilization could have positive effects. For instance, Video motion detection (VMD) is a way of defining activity in a scene by analyzing image data and differences in a series of images, a feature that can be built into a network video product or made available with video management software. Shakes and vibration increases the risk for false alarm, but can be amended by using Electronic Image Stabilization.

Finally, a perhaps less obvious advantage of image stabilization is that privacy masking can be made more precise. On a camera without any stabilization system, the effects of possible shakes and vibrations would have to be compensated by increasing the masked of area in the image.

Making efficient video stabilization affordable
Hardware and software development are making efficient video stabilization techniques affordable for an ever-increasing range of network cameras. This progress not only secures smooth, comfortable video monitoring in real time. It also enhances image usability, improves camera operability, makes installation more flexible and finally, improves the overall cost efficiency of a network camera surveillance system.

 

VIVOTEK creates secure environment in a Polish hotel at Tatra mountain region

VIVOTEK creates secure environment in a Polish hotel at Tatra mountain region

Editor / Provider: VIVOTEK | Updated: 9/22/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Creating an Atmosphere of Security and Relaxation for Guests
Located in Bialka Tatrzanska Mountain Resort in the central Tatra Mountain region, Bania Hotel is among the most luxurious hotels in Poland. An excellent location, top quality service, and numerous attractions make Bania Hotel truly exceptional. Bania Hotel is a perfect destination for families and couples wishing to enjoy peaceful leisure and an ideal location for adventurers seeking intense experiences.

Customers, staffs, and hotel facilities require sound protection. Feeling relaxed and not worrying about security problems are critical for guests during their stay at Bania Hotel. Therefore, an array of indoor and outdoor surveillance solutions is required throughout the complex. To satisfy the end user's needs, features such as megapixel image quality, round-the-clock surveillance, intelligent IR illumination, and Wide Dynamic Range (WDR) functionality are essential. The system must also be user-friendly, thereby enabling immediate response to any potential incidents.

Quality Service, Quality Surveillance
Bania Hotel management has chosen VIVOTEK products, which provide optimal cost-to-performance ratio among numerous surveillance solutions available on the market. VIVOTEK is a widely known brand with prestigious deployments worldwide. VIVOTEK's surveillance solutions consist of top-quality products built with state-of-the-art technology while being cost-efficient - a characteristic lacking in other leading brands.

For indoor surveillance, security specialists recommended the reliable fixed dome network camera VIVOTEK FD8134. This high-quality megapixel camera comprises a compact and discreet design, and is equipped with IR LED illuminators required for nighttime monitoring. This device is powered by PoE technology, and features a slot for SD/SDHC memory cards that enable local recording; thus, no data will be lost in the unlikely instance of malfunctions. VIVOTEK FD8134 is an excellent choice for locations such as corridors, storage rooms, and staff-only areas. In Bania Hotel, VIVOTEK FD8162 was employed in areas requiring special attention, such as lobbies, entrances, and places frequently visited by guests. This full HD image quality model features a vast array of additional functions including a PIR (Passive Infrared Sensor) sensor for enhanced motion detection, WDR for processing highly contrasted scenes, and Focus Assist for quick and easy focus adjustments.

For outdoor areas, the advanced VIVOTEK IP8335H bullet camera was employed. In addition to superior image quality and rock-solid reliability, this model offers a series of advanced features including powerful WDR Pro for high contrast environments, P-iris technology to achieve sharp images under changing light conditions, and Focus Assist for quick and easy focus adjustments. VIVOTEK IP8335H also features IP67 weatherproof housing, an SD/SDHC memory card slot for local storage, PoE support, IR LED illuminators, and removable IR-cut filter for securing surveillance quality and image clarity around the clock.

Excellent Surveillance System Fulfills Customers' High Expectations
VIVOTEK surveillance is, without doubt, Bania Hotel's optimal choice. Both the installing company and end-user acknowledged the high quality and exceptional value delivered by VIVOTEK products. With the assistance of specialists from SUMA, VIVOTEK's key partner and distributor in Poland, an excellent surveillance system was delivered, thus fulfilling the end user's high expectations.

“With excellent image quality and reliability, VIVOTEK cameras are the key to this successful deployment,” said Pawel Dziubasik, owner of the Bania Hotel complex. “In addition, the designs of VIVOTEK cameras fit the elegant style of our hotel in both indoor and outdoor areas. The entire system is discreet yet stylish while maintaining harmony with the hotel's traditional mountain region look.”

QNAP security's NVR solution safeguard the underground city in Georgia

QNAP security's NVR solution safeguard the underground city in Georgia

Editor / Provider: sponsored by QNAP | Updated: 9/19/2014 | Article type: Infrastructure

Background
Tbilisi Metro, operated since December 1966, is a rapid transit metro system in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. At present, the system consists of 2 lines with 22 stations. Constructed at the depth of 100 meters underground, Tbilisi Metro is one of the deepest subways in the world. Many people in the city depend heavily on Tbilisi Metro for daily traveling because of its convenience.

Challenge
From the perspective of surveillance system deployment, the environment of Tbilisi Metro is quite complicated. As the metro is built underground 100 meters deep, it requires advanced deployment that could support strong network connection. Hence, optical fiber is used for any network appliance in the metro system to fulfill the demands of high-speed intranet connection. On the other hand, being one of the busiest public transportations, Tbilisi Metro is always crowded with people, and the need for an intensive surveillance system deployment is necessary to provide people a safer environment.

The original surveillance system that Tbilisi Metro used was gradually outdated and failed to satisfy the need of monitoring a greater number of IP cameras. As a result, Tbilisi Metro started to look for new surveillance solution that could carry out superior performance of smooth video streaming from a large number of IP cameras.

Solution
Taking system performance and reliability of video/audio streaming as the first priority, Tbilisi Metro chose QNAP® Security surveillance solution to upgrade its security system infrastructure, with totally 27 units of QNAP® VioStor NVR VS-8040 deployed. The 8-bay NVR VS-8040, powered by Intel® Core™ 2 Duo 2.8 GHz CPU and installed with eight 3TB hard drives, offers up to 24TB large storage capacity for long-term recording and presents remarkable performance with maximum 360 Mbps throughput to support simultaneous monitoring and recording from 40 IP cameras. The demand of Tbilisi Metro for an intensive surveillance deployment was well satisfied.


The security administrators were always busy and under pressure. A device with easy-to-manage and simple-to-use interface was the key concern for Tbilisi Metro. Even without much IT expertise, the security administrators could easily learn how to manage the VS-8040 and the installed IP cameras through the handy user interface. The work efficiency was therefore greatly improved.

“This is the second big project we adopt QNAP Security products, and the experience and result are still satisfying and impressive,” said the managing engineer of GESCO Group. “The VS-8040 has delivered quality performance of video streaming and stability, which right fulfills our demands for the sophisticated surveillance environment.”

Result
QNAP® VioStor NVR VS-8040 effectively supports Tbilisi Metro's demand for monitoring a large number of IP cameras at each critical corner around the metro stations. Tbilisi Metro now provides people with enhanced protection with the assistance of QNAP® Security surveillance solution.

While additional line of Tbilisi Metro is under construction, the newer VioStor NVR models VS-8100 Pro+ series and VS-8100U-RP Pro series are considered in future deployment. Both models, available in 48, 40, 32, or 24-channel, are equipped with more powerful Intel® Core™ i3-2120 processor and deliver better performance on video and audio streaming from multiple channels. While supporting up to 48 channels monitoring, the VS-8100 Pro+ series and VS-8100U-RP Pro series provide an ideal surveillance solution for Tbilisi Metro's need for wider scope of IP camera deployment, fulfilling closer look at Tbilisi Metro's security.

Smart cities turn information into meaningful messages with VCA

Smart cities turn information into meaningful messages with VCA

Editor / Provider: Israel Gogol, a&s International | Updated: 9/23/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

People enter the main square, a computer screen at the city's operations center beeps an alert. Analytics engines combining inputs from video and social media predict that a riot is about to erupt. Looking for people potentially carrying weapons, the cameras at the scene automatically detects people carrying backpacks from within the crowd. This is not science fiction: it is part of the capabilities recently demonstrated in Singapore as part of its safe city pilot project. Once an emerging technology, video content analytics (VCA) is becoming more mainstream.

The use of video cameras and video content analytics (VCA) for city surveillance is no longer a novelty. As safe/smart city projects become more prevalent, the traditional use of video surveillance and VCA is changing. Previously restricted to security or safety alone, the future of VCA in a safe/smart city lies in connectivity with other systems, enabling a more dynamic and comprehensive, real-time situation picture, thus allowing operators to better handle events and take full advantage of video footage.

Zvika Ashani, CTO of Agent Vi, elaborated on the use of VCA in a city environment. He pointed out that fundamentally, video analytics are used for three main objectives: security, safety, and city management. Security analytics are based on a predefined organizational security policy and include capabilities such as detecting vehicles parked in no parking zones, intrusion detection, unattended baggage detection, and loitering. Safety analytics can identify crowd gatherings, blocked emergency exits, or a vehicle stuck on a railway. Management analytics uses the data from video cameras to collect statistics used for city planning, such as traffic flow, vehicle counts, speeds, etc.

New innovations coming from Singapore
In 2013, Singapore initiated the Safe City Test Bed project. Its R&D initiative is to develop a safety and security industry with innovative capabilities in the city state. Karianto Leman, Head of the Situational Awareness Analytics Program in Singapore's Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R) — a member of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) — shared some of the key contributions of VCA in smart city security. For example, I2R has developed a system that detects aggressive human actions. The system automatically extracts motion related features and feeds them to an artificial intelligence engine. The engine has been trained with video samples involving aggressive human actions to detect an occurrence of such an incident in real time. In applications, the system can be configured to detect gang fights, rioting, rampaging, etc. Another possible use is to protect security guards from being ambushed. In the safety and city management domains, I2R developed crowd analytics that could work robustly under very crowded conditions. The system can extract from real-time information such as crowd size, walking directions and speeds, and the number of visitors over time. It could also mine these metadata to unveil insights such as popular paths, point-of-interests in retail or exhibition spaces, crowd behaviors, and other statistics.

Key technologies to this are accurate human detections and tracking even when crowd density is very high. This overcomes the pitfall of most video analytics systems where performance drops drastically in crowded conditions. Applications of this technology include crowd sensing and activity profiling at public places such as train stations and shopping malls, allowing, for example, estimations for waiting time in queues for taxis, banking services, etc.

It's all about connectivity
One of the principles behind safe/ smart cities is creating an interconnected environment. In this setting, different systems are combined to ensure the city's safety and efficiency. The future of VCA in safe cities is in connectivity with other systems and combining information from different sources to create a more detailed situational awareness picture. “Security applications are still very much in focus. We are seeing several new VCA applications areas in city safety, efficient use of energy and other public resources, street parking management, and many others,” said Dr. Sadiye Guler, founder and President of intuVision. "For example smart street lights that are automatically brightened when there are only few people on a street to increase safety of the citizens also helps save electricity. The emphasis is on smart city solutions that combine VCA with other sensors and systems to develop city wide combined solutions.”

In addition, “Safe cities are more concerned with making traffic and people flow more efficiently together with improving safety,” said Bill Flind, CEO of Ipsotek. Therefore, he added, “VCA shouldn't be visualized as working alone but as part of the wider situational awareness system providing managers with suggested responses and action plans”.

One example is the image recognition and incident detection system, developed by Ipsotek, for Transport for London (TfL), the department in charge of keeping London's transportation systems flowing. When a road in central London was blocked by a vehicle that had lost control across the carriageway, the system identified within 30 seconds that this was an incident requiring rapid intervention. Predefined contingency plans alerted the relevant TfL staff allowing them to take immediate remedial action including re-sequencing of traffic lights to divert traffic away from the incident spot. The ability to control rapidly developing build-ups of traffic around accidents, keeping traffic flowing through the use of an “always-on” system significantly reduced journey times in London.

Tool for post and pre-event management
According to Jamie Wilson, Security Marketing Manager for EMEA at NICE Systems, the power of VCA is not just in post-event investigation and scenario reconstruction, but “also in the ability to know sooner that an incident could potentially take place, or is starting, improving both the speed and quality of response.”

A good example of this would be VCA reporting crowding and movement through a public space combined with information about an event or sentiment analysis from a social media tool like Twitter or Facebook. This multi-source situational awareness would increase efficiency and help facilitate effective and timely decision making and faster deployment of necessary resources — a police car, a fire engine, or even a garbage truck.

This allows for more efficient management of security forces. The limited resources of security personnel could be optimized by assigning them to the places that require them more urgently. By sharing video footage or images containing the incident to the security officer to validate the alarm, they can get an understanding of the situation.

“Scenario-based video analytic systems accurately recognize complex situations by evaluating and combining multiple conditions. It is this combined analysis that delivers the detailed understanding of the operating environment, and it is this understanding that dramatically reduces false alarms even in complex environments, leading to VCA becoming a trusted information provider to city surveillance projects,” added Flind.

Technological advancement In VCA for city surveillance
City environments are complex environments for VCA to tackle. The challenges include analyzing crowded areas, changing lighting, weather conditions, distance of objects from the camera, the need to seamlessly move from camera to camera when tracking an object, etc. These are but some of the obstacles facing VCA vendors. Despite the challenges, the growing technical capabilities of processing algorithms and advancements in the field of data storage will facilitate a more widespread use of video analytics.

As the number of semantics detected by video analytics grows, so will the efficiency and power of forensic searches. Security officers will be able to conduct faster and more detailed searches. The system developed by I2R, which can detect high-level human semantics could pick out from a human crowd a person carrying a backpack or sling bag. This can be performed on general video surveillance camera image resolution. In addition, the system can detect people wearing sunglasses, headdresses, clothing patterns, etc. It could also estimate the height of the person that the system is tracking. The continuous improvements in data storage will facilitate growing amounts of video footage being stored and analyzed. This means cities will be less restricted when they need to prioritize which information to keep and which to delete.

Too much information to digest?
“The mass of data has become a benefit as opposed to a challenge,” said Wilson. “By integrating all of the data-feeds, the operator is given a single clear picture of what is going on and can focus on using his skills to manage an incident rather than trying to interpret the data. In turn this speeds up resolution of incidents, saving time, money, and resources.” There is still quite a long way to go in intelligent video solutions for safe/smart cities; future goals include features such as automatic tracking and switching between cameras and of course reaching reliable face recognition from security cameras. With the speed at which technology is evolving, and with growing numbers of safe city projects being implemented, these capabilities will for sure be on the agenda of many vendors.

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