Access control controllers - Expert commentary

Automatic gates: Making the right investment for access control
Automatic gates: Making the right investment for access control

The experience of the COVID-19 pandemic has made us all more conscious of who is coming and going from our property. Whether it is a family home, business premises or public building, property owners want full control over access for protection and peace of mind. As a provider of access control technologies, we are seeing a growing demand for automated gates with a variety of access control systems. There are a number of considerations that buyers need to make when investing. And as an installer, there is advice that you can offer to help your clients make the right choice for their property. Here are some of the key considerations you’ll need to make and discuss with your client. Whomever you buy from, you should be offered more than a simple instruction manual. Electronic locks, magnetic locks and code security In the first instance, you’ll need to advise on the type of lock and access control available. Electronic locks release on the operation of the automation system to allow the gates to open. Locks are required for all non-locking (also known as reversible) operators and are recommended for any gate on a multi-user site or any gate over 2.5m. Apply the same logic to an automated gate as you would to a domestic door – for example, you wouldn’t fit your front door with a lock on the same side as the hinges or a drop bolt at the hinge end of a manual gate so why dispense with this logic when the gate is automated? Electronic locks release on the operation of the automation system to allow the gates to open There are a number of locks on the market including magnetic locks, drop locks that “shoot” a bolt into the ground and side latching locks. These are all designed for external use. While the gate itself will provide physical security, the customer will want to feel in control of who enters their property, when and for what purpose. Consider access for post and deliveries, waste disposal and visitors arriving on foot etc. There is a range of options available. Intercom systems will allow the user to vet visitors, keypad entry can allow remote access for visitors with a specific code, remote controls allow an oncoming driver to open the gates without getting out of the vehicle, and a timer control can be used to open or close the gates at certain times of the day. Vehicle detection loops can be installed discreetly under the tarmac allowing the presence of vehicles to exit the gates and prevent closing whilst obstructed. Sliding gates versus swinging gates There are a number of locks on the market including magnetic locks, drop locks that “shoot” a bolt into the ground and side latching locks Gates can be automated to either swing or to slide open and in the case of swinging gates, the opener may be concealed underground or gate mounted. The most suitable opener for your installation will depend on the space available and the type of gate selected. Concealed underground automation is ideal for highly ornate gates. However, where gates are fully infilled (typical of many timber designs), gate mounted openers are concealed from the front of the gate by the gate leaf and present a cost-effective option. The choice between slide and swing is largely down to space - swing gates require a clear space for their opening arc whilst sliding gates require space to one or both sides of the gate. Sliding gates are perhaps the best choice where the drive slopes or when drive space is limited, as they use the least space when opening. Voltage Most swing gate and sliding systems are available in 24v or 230v. The 24v systems still need 230v mains power – there is a transformer built into the 24v control panels. Deciding which voltage to use can include a combination of factors such as the material of the gates, the location of the system and the safety features you want. Concealed underground automation is ideal for highly ornate gates With wrought iron gates, the wind can pass through them whereas with fully boarded wooden gates (popular because they give full privacy) the wind has nowhere to go, so they act like sails. For commercial or industrial applications with larger entrances and a heavy gate, you may need 3 Phase 400v power (sliding gates only). Installing gate motors in confined spaces The environment in which you are fitting may well influence which gate and motor you recommend. Will it be in an exposed area which is subject to the elements? Will it be positioned on a slope? Sliding gates are perhaps the best choice where the drive slopes or when drive space is limited Installers have always faced the challenge of installing gate motors in confined spaces. When fitting a pedestrian gate, there is often limited space in which to work – potentially making an installation time consuming and technically demanding. If this is the case for you, consider a gate operator which is designed specifically for installations with limited space for manoeuvre. An example of this is the E5 compact gate operator. The operator is not only small but has an optional slide lever attachment designed for installations where there is extremely limited space, meaning that just 8cm of the pillar is needed for installation. What’s more, improved fixing points and a simple ‘hook and fasten’ process means assembly is safe, quick and straight forward. Ultimately, you’ll be looking for a good quality, reliable product with good service. Work with a supplier that offers more than just a manual. If they are happy to offer training, their time and advice when you buy, the chances are you’ll get their support long term.

4 ways to keep your workplace protected from COVID-19
4 ways to keep your workplace protected from COVID-19

The unprecedented global impact of COVID-19 has taken its toll on all of us, but as cases of the virus thankfully recede, employers are now forced to confront how they can enable a safe return to work for employees. For many employers, this means they will have to carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment, redesign workspaces to maintain social distances, carry out more frequent cleaning, manage the transmission risk and find alternatives to touch-based security devices. Protecting workplace occupants in any emergency requires preparation and clear communication. This is especially critical in a health crisis involving an infectious disease. These are some of the essential best practices that could help organisations reduce the impact on their employees and operations during this pandemic. 1. Use a visitor management system With a visitor management system, organisations have a single source of real-time and historical insights into who is, or was recently, in the workplace. This is especially important because of the need to perform contact tracing should anyone in the organisation show symptoms of COVID-19, meaning everyone they have been in contact with needs to be contacted and asked to isolate. Yet still, first impressions are made at the front desk or lobby, where the visitor experience needs to be a positive one. At the same time, though, any emergency event requires that there be strict control over who is entering the workplace. This policy also needs to be clearly communicated to visitors. Doing this minimises risk to visitors as well as the workforce. In addition to delivering a high-quality visitor experience, the ideal visitor management system must: Enable organisations to meet regulatory compliance mandates and facilitate check-in at a self-service kiosk to minimise wait times. Customise the visitor experience to support specific security needs, such as accelerating and simplifying check-in or requiring additional security pre-checks. Automate compliance as it relates to visitor access rules with historical visit reports. 2. Pre-check questions at visitor registration kiosks Organisations can strengthen security at the registration kiosk using a flexible, enterprise-grade visitor management system to add visitor sign-in steps. This has proven successful in the past when used to control the spread of infectious disease during an outbreak. An example of this is a U.S. children's hospital which managed to reduce facility infection rates by 25 percent over a two-year period using a commercial, off-the-shelf physical identity and access management (PIAM) solution from HID Global. The solution provides two particularly important capabilities that can be used by organisations to protect their workplace from the uncontrolled spread of an infectious disease: Enhance visitor registration policy with additional mandatory questions to help identify any visitors who may need other screenings. Extend the visitor registration kiosk with a mandatory pop-up asking further questions during visitor check-in. 3. Understand who has visited your workplace Successful controlling the spread of infection throughout a facility requires the ability to automatically maintain an auditable trail of activity. This can be done using an enterprise-grade visitor management system that makes it easy to retrieve historical visit reports. This provides a timeline of who was in the workplace, and when they were there. Key features include: A single dashboard providing useful visitor insights at your fingertips. Historical reports that provide visitor details including location and contact information, all in compliance with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and other privacy regulations. 4. Clearly communicate how infection risks can be reduced Global organisations must actively communicate with visitors and employees on the outbreak of infectious diseases and follow best practices outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO). Here are several things organisations can do in this area to help maintain a safe and healthy workplace: Re-enforce and communicate WHO best practices with guideline posters in the front lobby and throughout the workplace. Add posters that also encourage regular and thorough washing of hands. Encourage everyone to cough or sneese into their shirt sleeve in their flexed elbow or cover their mouth and nose with a tissue. Encourage everyone to keep a relatively safe distance from each other and use alternatives to handshakes when saying hello. Organisations must contend with a variety of workplace challenges during the outbreak of an infectious disease. These challenges can be solved with best practices that include a comprehensive visitor management system that automates critical check-in policies and maintains an auditable trail of visitor activity.  

The intersection of education and fire and security
The intersection of education and fire and security

Protecting against fire and security risks is an essential aspect of life for people and across all sectors. However, there is an increasing expectation and demand on fire and security providers, in areas such as education. The securitisation of our world paired with the rapid speed of communication and news updates means that young people especially have the potential to be more aware of potential dangers and threats to their own safety and the safety of those around them. Education institutions are large and sometimes sprawling sites that present considerable fire and security challenges. From kindergarten to university Each education site brings distinct challenges, with differing facilities and specialties, as well as the need to maintain the capacity of students, teachers and lecturers to study, learn and teach at the high level expected.Each education site brings distinct challenges, with differing facilities and specialties While some schools and universities are based in urban areas with a mix of heritage and high rise buildings, others are sprawled across green open spaces. Some of these sites have specialised sporting facilities, while others may be focused on engineering or scientific study, with costly technical equipment. Kindergartens and primary schools have their own unique requirements. Parents expect the highest safety standards, while schools require safety in addition to efficient facilities management. The demographic of these institutions is predominantly young children, who are often unaware of or only just learning about fire safety and personal safety. This creates a huge vulnerability and an added onus on teachers to keep their students safe. Facial recognition at West Academy of Beijing In response to this need, Chubb China upgraded the closed-circuit television (CCTV) system for Western Academy of Beijing (WAB) focusing on elevating video content analytic features, including maximised CCTV monitoring, automatic police calling, and a smart search solution. Complementing this, a facial recognition system capable of finding the exact location of a student on campus within 30 seconds was added, aided by real-time remote gate operation. This integrated and advanced system resulted won the "High Quality Educational Technology Suppliers for School" award for the WAB project at the 2019 BEED Asia Future Oriented Construction of Universities and Schools Seminar. This award recognises outstanding solution design and project execution. Parents expect the highest safety standards, while schools require safety in addition to efficient facilities management Awareness remains important at university As students graduate from kindergarten, primary school, junior and senior school, they become more aware of fire safety, relevant dangers and how to protect themselves. Unfortunately, external dangers remain. There are particularly high stakes for university campus facilities managers The safety of students in a university environment is also critical. It is often the first time young people live away from their family home and have the independence of adulthood. For this reason, there are particularly high stakes for university campus facilities managers. In the eventuality of a fire, students could be at great risk and, beyond the immediacy of physical harm, this can have serious ramifications for the reputation of an educational institution. Integrated solutions Integrated solutions must be nimble and adapted to a range of site types including campus residences, recreational areas, open spaces and lecture theatres. Chubb Sicli recently identified and overcame these challenges through the installation of a full suite of fire safety and security equipment and services at Webster University Geneva. Established in Switzerland in 1978, Webster University Geneva is an accredited American university campus that offers programs in English to students interested in undergraduate or graduate-level education.  Located in the Commune of Bellevue, just a few kilometres from Geneva's central station, the campus of Webster University Geneva includes five buildings in a park-style atmosphere. Full fire and security audit Chubb Sicli provided Webster’s fire extinguisher maintenance for over 25 years. This business relationship led to a full fire and security audit that identified the need for updates to the university’s security installation. The initial audit showed several improvements to the university’s security profile were needed.The challenge was to create and provide an effective and interconnected fire and security solution The challenge was to create and provide an effective and interconnected fire and security solution, enhancing the security of the student population and its ever-evolving needs. This included complete fire detection and intruder alarms for all five buildings, upgrades to existing CCTV systems, new video surveillance equipment and an automated fire extinguishing system in the kitchen areas. In addition to this integrated system solution, Webster University required access control for all main entrances, with the requirement that all documentation to be made available in English, because Webster is an American company. Customised solution Chubb Sicli’s quality, capability, and security expertise provided a customised solution for the unique educational establishment. Not only was the solution both tailored and integrated, the approach and planning were based on audit, fire extinguisher and emergency light maintenance, fire detection, intrusion detection, access control, video surveillance and Fire Detection. Through dedicated and integrated fire safety support, Chubb provides students and families peace of mind and security. From the moment a young child enters the education system, Chubb’s diligent and effective surveillance and fire safety systems work to prevent and protect, offering a new kind of ‘end-to-end’ service for education systems around the world.

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Altronix demonstrates Trove Access and Power Integration Solutions at ASIS 2017
Altronix demonstrates Trove Access and Power Integration Solutions at ASIS 2017

Altronix, a recognised provider of power and transmission solutions for the professional security industry, is featuring its expanded offering of Trove Access and Power Integration Solutions at ASIS 2017 (booth # 2823). New additions to the Trove series include Altronix integrations with Bosch, DMP, Honeywell, Kantech and Sielox access. These new models join the versatile line of Trove solutions which accommodate AMAG, CDVI, HID/Vertx, KABA/KeyScan, Mercury and Software House access controllers. “Trove enclosures and backplanes simplify board layout and wire management, greatly reducing installation and labor costs, while providing the versatility and scalability that system designers and installers require to easily configure their systems.” said Alan Forman, President, Altronix Corporation. Enhanced performance efficiency Trove2 Access and Power Integration Solutions are designed for larger applications, allowing Altronix power/accessories combined with access controllers from the industry’s leading manfacturers to be wired and pre-tested prior to on-site installation. This reduces total cost and enhances performance efficiency. Altronix also offers the Trove1 Access and Power Integration Solution, a more compact version of the Trove2 for smaller applications which accommodate CDVI, HID/VertX and Mercury access controllers. All Trove enclosures include a cam lock, tamper switch and mounting hardware. Altronix has further simplified the product selection and configuration process by offering a free online Trove System Design Tool for configuring a access system.

First edition of Intersec Saudi Arabia 2017 to lead upward trend of fire safety and security markets
First edition of Intersec Saudi Arabia 2017 to lead upward trend of fire safety and security markets

Intersec Saudi Arabia 2017 is expected to host more than 100 exhibitors, including 22 launch partners Saudi Arabia and the UAE are leading the upward trend for the fire safety systems market in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), as stringent government regulations fuel demand for the replacement of existing and outdated equipment. According to consultancy firm 6Wresearch, the GCC’s fire safety systems market was worth US $ 1.36 billion in 2015, with Saudi Arabia (US $ 598.4 million), and the UAE (US $ 394.4 million) comprising 73 per cent of the regional market. The other Gulf States of Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, and Kuwait accounted for US $ 367.2 million (27 per cent). Fire safety system market growth 6Wresearch said Saudi’s fire safety systems and equipment market is projected to grow six per cent annually from 2016 – 2020.  By 2022, the market is estimated to be worth US $ 632.2 million, attributed to a recovery in the construction and real estate verticals. Other factors driving regional demand for new fire safety systems include government and transportation sectors, residential, retail, and hospitality verticals, while Saudi’s Vision 2030 and the upcoming Dubai Expo 2020 in the UAE is also likely to boost further growth. The latest market updates were told to more than 100 fire, safety and security industry professionals at a three-day Saudi roadshow promoting the upcoming Intersec exhibitions in Dubai and Jeddah. Intersec Dubai 2017 The first edition of IntersecSaudi Arabia meanwhile is expected to host more than100 exhibitors, including 22launch partners Intersec, the world’s leading exhibition for security, safety, and fire protection, runs from 22-24 January 2017 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, while Intersec Saudi Arabia will take place from 2-4 May 2017 at the Jeddah Centre for Forums & Events. In its 19th edition, Intersec 2017 will feature more than 1,300 exhibitors from 54 countries spanning over 55,000sqm of exhibition space, registering a 10 per cent growth over the previous year. Intersec Saudi Arabia 2017 The first edition of Intersec Saudi Arabia meanwhile is expected to host more than 100 exhibitors, including 22 launch partners; Al Alameya Group, Axis Communications, Bristol Fire Engineering – Corodex, the British Security Industry Association, CP Plus, Dahua, dorma + kaba, Draeger, Genetec, Hanwha Techwin, Harco Group, HID Global, Hikvision, Milestone, NAFFCO, Nedap, Pelco by Schneider Electric, Promise Technology, Smiths Detection, Tadween, NITIE, and ZMR. Fire & rescue section Fire & Rescue is one of seven show sections at Intersec 2017, and has nearly doubled in size over the last four years. The section, which attracted 350 exhibitors in 2016, is expected to continue its growth trend in 2017, having attracted the likes of Apollo, bsi, Bristol, Chemours, Fike, Hochiki, Grupo Komtes, LPCB, NAFFCO, Oshkosh, Rapidrop, Scott Safety, Securiton, SFFECO, Siemens, UL, and Velox. “Ongoing investments in the commercial, retail, industrial, hospitality, and the healthcare sectors, combined with upcoming high profile international events, means growth is the buzz word across all sectors in the GCC, and this also applies to the fire safety market,” said Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of Intersec, and Intersec Saudi Arabia. “Improvements in the enforcement of fire codes in the construction sector, and the constant need for fire protection and life safety means the GCC’s fire safety market is estimated to grow annually by 14-16 per cent to reach US$3.15 billion by 2020.” "Expenditures in the MiddleEast oil and gas sector are expected to increase by morethan 19 per cent for the 5-year period ending in 2017" “This robust demand for the latest equipment, fire protection and firefighting systems is reflected in the strong growth in the Fire & Rescue section at Intersec, while Intersec Saudi Arabia too will host the biggest names in the fire protection market,” added Pauwels. Oil & gas Oil & Gas is another key sector for the fire protection industry, and will be a key target area for Hochiki at Intersec 2017. The Japanese-headquartered company specialises in commercial and industrial fire detection and emergency lighting solutions, and will showcase its latest range of fire detection products designed specifically for use in oil refineries, gas processing plants and other high risk environments. “Expenditures in the Middle East oil and gas sector are expected to increase by more than 19 per cent for the 5-year period ending in 2017,” said Robert Head, Assistant Managing Director at Hochiki Middle East. “When operating in such hazardous environments, it’s important to ensure the building’s fire safety systems are robust and reliable. There is a variety of fire detection products designed specifically for use in oil refineries, gas processing plants and other high risk environments.” “Intrinsically Safe devices (IS) restrict the electrical and thermal energy in the circuit ensuring that ignition in an explosive atmosphere cannot occur; making them ideal for use in oil and gas facilities as well as chemical engineering plants. Hochiki have a wide range of IS devices, from smoke detectors to flame detectors, which have all been certified by BASEEFA to IECEx and ATEX,” added Head. New panel & product launches Global Fire Equipment from Portugal, a manufacturer of fire detection and extinguishing systems will return to Intersec 2017 with the launch of its new panels and several other products like PA/VA systems, and web enabled interfaces. "Our goal is to establish longterm partnerships with agents working in the security fieldwith the purpose of expandingour global presence whichcovers more than 70 countries" João Paulo Ajami, the Commercial Director for Global Fire Equipment, said, “We had several interesting projects in Saudi Arabia in the last 12 months, while exhibiting at Intersec has helped us launch several good distribution channels in countries like Kenya, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Tanzania, and Pakistan.” “Our goal is to establish long term partnerships with agents working in the security field with the purpose of expanding our global presence which covers more than 70 countries. Our systems are applied in residential, commercial and industrial sectors and its subsectors, since fire detection is applicable to almost all construction sectors.” Regional fire safety codes Elsewhere, Aman Fire Protection, an Oman-based fire protection engineering consultancy, will look to increase its business contacts at Intersec 2017 and explain the fire codes approvals process to those undertaking projects in the Middle East. Anthony Cole, Technical Director at Aman Fire Protection, highlighted the growing trend for better awareness of regional fire safety codes following recent fire incidents across the GCC. “There’s an increase in awareness for the need for review and approval of materials used in construction by fire protection consultants especially in high rise projects following the several high profile fires,” said Cole. “Oil & Gas, military, power and energy creation, large commercial developments such as shopping malls and integrated tourism leisure projects are the most important industries our business is targeting now.” Intersec’s other core sections include Commercial Security, Homeland Security & Policing, Safety & Health, Information Security, Smart Home and Physical & Perimeter Security. Save Save Save Save

Altronix showcases latest Trove access and power integration enclosures at ISC West 2016
Altronix showcases latest Trove access and power integration enclosures at ISC West 2016

New additions include backplanes for AMAG, CDVI, KABA/KeyScan and Software House access controllers and accessories Altronix, the recognised leader in power and transmission solutions for the professional security industry, is showcasing new additions to its popular line of Trove™ access and power integration enclosures at ISC West 2016. Additions to the Trove offering include backplanes for AMAG, CDVI, KABA/KeyScan and Software House access controllers and accessories, as well as the introduction of Trove1, a compact enclosure that accommodates CDVI, HID/VertX and Mercury controllers. Trove enclosures simplify board layout and wire management, greatly reducing installation time and labour costs. “Trove has been extremely well received by the industry since its introduction this past fall,” said Alan Forman, President, Altronix Corporation. “Our new backplanes and the smaller Trove1 enclosure provide installers with added versatility and scalability when configuring access and power board layout.” Maximum installation capacity and flexibility The new Trove backplanes accommodate access control boards and accessories, joining Altronix’s existing backplanes for Mercury and VertX. Trove accommodates a wide range of boards with or without Altronix power supplies and accessories. An optional TMV2 door backplane is also offered for maximum installation capacity and flexibility. Systems can be wired and pre-tested prior to on-site installation for added cost and performance benefits. All Trove units include a cam lock, tamper switch and mounting hardware. As with all Altronix products, Trove Enclosures are made in the U.S.A.

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