CCTV Switchers & Switches - Expert commentary

Surge protection for security installations: 2017 saw increased investment
Surge protection for security installations: 2017 saw increased investment

In 2017, DITEK saw how power surges from the many natural disasters that took place damaged many businesses. In a natural disaster, or even everyday business operations, a facility’s entire investment in security, life safety and surveillance systems technology can be disabled or rendered useless in a few seconds. Surge protection solutions can mitigate those risks and protect security investments. Proactive approach to risk mitigation Throughout 2017, we also witnessed a change in how enterprises view surge protection, which included how investments are being made in surge protection to protect valuable security, life safety and surveillance systems, while also reducing downtime, manpower costs, liability vulnerabilities, and possibly compliance issues that can force businesses to actually cease operations. Effective security management is about mitigating risks. But risks cannot be mitigated without a proactive approach. Enterprises and integrators, who take the time to assess risk and to develop a strategy to incorporate effective detection, deter and response criteria to protect physical assets will be successful in 2018. 2018 and beyond That strategy includes designing surge protection into new security systems, while also adding surge protection to existing systems. Enterprises and security integrators who implement a surge protection strategy during security planning processes – or after – will be exercising prevention and mitigation, and they will be successful in 2018 and beyond.  Surge protection devices have an untapped potential for enterprise surveillance and security systems In 2017, Ditek continued to offer security end users a solid surge protection solution. We also successfully educated system integrators, who are seeking value-added products or services to incorporate into their portfolios, on the importance of surge protection devices. Educating security integrators We believe that surge protection devices have an untapped potential for enterprise video surveillance and security systems, because they can and do meet safety and security challenges that have been rarely identified in the past. We are looking forward to 2018, when we will continue to develop new surge protection products – including a new product engineered to protect up to twelve individual fuel dispensers, which is critical to the financial operation of convenience stores. We will also continue to educate security integrators about the importance of including surge protection in the design/build RFP, to not only secure an enterprise’s valuable security equipment, but also to help integrators to differentiate their capabilities and knowledge from the competition.

Technology evolution leads to changes in security control room furniture
Technology evolution leads to changes in security control room furniture

Technology is changing the look and function of today’s security control rooms. Old-school CRT (cathode-ray tube) monitors are giving way to the thinner, flat screen monitors in the control room environment, but the transition is gradual. Randy Smith of Winsted still sees many control rooms that need to make the conversion, which is a boon to his company’s business. Furniture today is designed differently to accommodate the thinner monitors, often with larger screens. Need for integrated rack systems With the increase of IP-based systems comes the need for integrated rack systems that include advanced functionality such as cable management, adds Jim Coleman, National Sales Manager, AFC Industries. Server rooms are environmentally controlled by cooling systems and power systems monitored on the IP network. Low-profile flat screens allow centres to utilise space vertically, thus creating a smaller footprint for the consoles. Additionally, with IP-based systems, workstations will have a smaller footprint because there is less cumbersome equipment. In most cases the servers are stored in a secured, climate controlled environment to eliminate overheating of the servers and maintain their security, says Coleman. This environment also helps with cable and power management. AFC builds technical furniture racks that adhere to the precise needs of computer network server room operators. The company designs and fabricates LAN workbenches with versatile functionalities, and server room workstation racks that are scalable. There is a complete line of IT workbenches, IT computer racks and computer server rack mounts with flexible mounting options. In most cases the servers are stored in a secured, climate controlled environment to eliminate overheating of the servers and maintain their security Flexible control room designs Matko Papic, Chief Technology Officer of Evans Consoles, says the transition from bulky CRT equipment to flat-screen (lower profile) monitors was a major disruption in control room design; it changed the whole dynamic. Another evolution is the use of IP video streaming, which allows more flexibility in manipulation of audio-video content, and requires more flexible control room designs. Another shift, driven by larger, higher-definition monitors, is a shift to fewer monitors that display more information. Instead of a smaller monitor for each information stream, larger monitors now consolidate that information into “dashboard” displays. Looking ahead, control rooms will need to be more flexible, both in the initial design and the ability to adapt to changing technology, says Papic. Legacy customers who are currently using PCs may be moving to more remote applications. Sit-stand equipment will continue to be increasingly prevalent. “There will be more emphasis on flexibility, technology integration, and the ability to change over the life of the system,” says Papic. Consolidation of multiple operations into a single system A trend in security is consolidation of multiple physical operations into a single system, says Papic. As a result, more customers are taking more interest in alarm management and situational awareness. How is the technology being used in terms of alarm triggers? How can the systems react rapidly and provide information to a larger audience in the control room? These questions impact how control rooms are designed, and Evans Consoles can adapt lessons learned from other markets to these trends in the security arena. Greater use of technology is inevitable, says Coleman of AFC Industries. “It is virtually impossible for humans to monitor all security data at the street level in our cities,” he says. “As computers become more powerful and their programs more all-encompassing, we will see a greater shift to robotic and technology uses that will provide enhanced monitoring capabilities and safety Read our Control Rooms series here

Will security industry consolidation stifle innovation?
Will security industry consolidation stifle innovation?

The security industry will continue to see consolidation through acquisition in 2017. At the advent of IP camera adoption, we saw a great decline in large vertically integrated companies, which spurred a new era of innovation within smaller IP camera manufacturers, VMS providers and other hardware companies for storage and managed switches.   We are now living in a new era of consolidation that is taking us full-circle back to vertical integration. Ultimately, the industry as a whole suffers because this consolidation will stifle innovation until the next big technology disruption takes shape. Interoperability across different verticals  This time last year, we noted that the marketplace was moving toward converged technologies and the need for alarm management across multiple platforms into a common interface, turned out to be a popular request. If anything, we are only seeing just the beginning phases of this transition. The biggest surprise is that interoperability is not only confined to security technology, but also extends to parallel systems such as building automation, safety and environmental controls, and even Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software. Using Video Event Management Software (VEMS) alongside these intelligent platforms proves to be a valuable verification process for many new and exciting vertical markets. Arteco plans to continue the revenue growth and brand awareness achieved in 2016 Event-based video security software At Arteco, our highest growth sectors tend to be slightly insulated from economic fluctuation in the sense that we focus on securing critical infrastructure (electrical utilities and communications) as well as corporate and education campuses. Unfortunately, the continued growth in active shooter incidents have made physical security concerns top of mind for many organisations regardless of economic impact. The unexpected repercussions are that many new security technologies are emerging that cater to real-time event notification on both the macro and micro level. The exciting part of this trend is that users are leveraging a layered approach with multiple autonomous applications working together toward a common goal to improve security, which will hopefully ensure a high level of protection.  Business growth and challenges Business has continued to grow year-over-year, and 2016 was a huge step forward for Arteco not only in terms of revenue growth, but also increased brand awareness in the United States and abroad. Our biggest challenge continues to be the crowded VMS market, which is filled with lower cost or even free substitute products. We are making great strides in overcoming this challenge by having a wonderful team of people, both on the technical and sales side of the organisation, who are focused on finding new and innovative ways to advance intuitive, open and affordable event-based and intelligent video security software into 2017. See the full coverage of 2016/2017 Review and Forecast articles here 

Latest FLIR Systems news

LenelS2 signs an agreement to integrate selected FLIR thermal cameras with OnGuard access control system
LenelS2 signs an agreement to integrate selected FLIR thermal cameras with OnGuard access control system

LenelS2 and FLIR Systems, Inc. announces that they had signed an agreement to integrate select FLIR thermal cameras with LenelS2’s OnGuard® access control system. The integrated, non-contact solution joins the Carrier Healthy Buildings Program suite of offerings to support reopening and to assist in slowing the spread of COVID-19 and possibly other viruses in the workplace through thermal screening. FLIR is a pioneer company specialising in the design and production of thermal imaging cameras, components and imaging sensors. LenelS2, a provider of advanced security systems and services, is a part of Carrier Global Corporation, a provider of innovative heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies. Site-specific screening protocols LenelS2 will offer integrated thermal imaging screening and access control solutions to quickly identify individuals with elevated skin temperature and apply customisable access control parameters to allow or deny entry. The strategic collaboration will leverage the FLIR EST™ line of non-contact thermal screening cameras, including the A500-EST and A700-EST, by integrating with the LenelS2 OnGuard access control system. The collaboration with FLIR will help drive our end users’ access control decisions in support of healthy, safe workspaces" “As organisations implement site-specific screening protocols, integrating access control systems with thermal imaging solutions is an important part of a comprehensive approach,” said Jeff Stanek, President, LenelS2. “The collaboration with FLIR will help drive our end users’ access control decisions in support of healthy, safe workspaces.” FLIR designed the A500-EST and A700-EST as non-contact screening tools that can serve as a first line of defence against potential health risks. Access control parameters These cameras are part of FLIR’s A-Series camera offering and are U.S. FDA 510(k) registered. Through onboard edge-computing with advanced measurement tools or when combined with customised elevated skin temperature screening software, these cameras provide rapid, frictionless screening stations that communicate with the OnGuard system to automatically process and apply customisable access control parameters. “Having a set of processes including temperature checks is critical for organisations as they work to maintain their operations or begin to return employees safely back to work,” said Rickard Lindvall, Vice President and General Manager, Solutions Business, FLIR. “The FLIR and LenelS2 brands complement each other perfectly to provide our customers best-of-breed solutions they can confidently deploy.”

FLIR highlights the uses of thermal imaging camera to detect elevated skin temperature with A320 Tempscreen
FLIR highlights the uses of thermal imaging camera to detect elevated skin temperature with A320 Tempscreen

The thermal imaging camera automatically detects the hottest temperature within an area, set by the operator. A colour alarm makes it easy to decide whether a person needs further screening. A thermal imaging camera can be an effective screening device for detecting individuals with an elevated skin temperature. This type of monitoring can provide useful information when used as a screening tool in high-traffic areas to help identify people with an elevated temperature compared to the general population. That individual can then be further screened using other body temperature measuring tools. Thermal imaging cameras Although thermal imaging cameras are primarily designed for industrial and night vision uses, public health organisations have used FLIR cameras around the world at airports, seaports, office buildings and other mass gathering areas to provide rapid, efficient screening in high-traffic areas. FLIR thermal cameras are particularly well suited to this because they can provide a temperature reading of a person´s face in a matter of seconds. A thermal imaging camera produces infrared images that display small temperature differences The FLIR Systems product line-up includes a wide variety of thermal imaging cameras that can be used for detecting people with elevated skin temperature. FLIR A320 Tempscreen, however, was especially developed for thermal screening in high-traffic applications. A thermal imaging camera produces infrared images or heat pictures that display small temperature differences. This allows thermal cameras to create and continually update a visual heat map of skin temperatures. Measuring skin temperatures In addition, FLIR thermal imaging cameras are sensitive devices capable of measuring small temperature differences. Many of the FLIR thermal cameras that are appropriate for measuring skin temperatures also offer built-in functions like visual and sound alarms that can be set to go off when a certain temperature threshold is exceeded. The operator can then instantly decide whether the subject needs to be referred for further screening with additional temperature measurement tools. As the thermal imaging camera produces images in near-realtime, the total evaluation process takes mere moments, making thermal imaging technology very useful for rapidly screening large numbers of people. FLIR A320 Tempscreen can be used in high-traffic areas, such as an airport, as part of screening procedures. Detecting elevated skin temperatures It´s true that a person´s general skin temperature is typically not equal to the person´s core temperature. That doesn´t detract from the use of thermal cameras to detect elevated skin temperatures, however. Thermal cameras are useful in this role because the goal is not to measure absolute skin temperature, but to differentiate people who have an elevated skin temperature compared to others while also considering the environmental conditions of the location. When in screening mode, the operator can save ten thermal images of faces Some FLIR camera models offer an elevated skin temperature screening mode that is helpful in comparing the person being screened against the temperature of other people previously screened. When in screening mode, the operator can save ten thermal images of faces that the camera automatically averages as a reference. Additional screening tools All areas on the subject's face that are hotter than a predefined temperature value can be displayed as a designated colour on the thermal image. This built-in alarm allows users to make an immediate decision regarding whether the subject may need further screening with additional screening tools. In addition, some FLIR cameras are equipped with an audible alarm that can be activated to sound if the detected temperature exceeds a predefined value. Airports all over the world are using FLIR cameras and have applied this methodology to screen people entering and leaving the country. It is a quick, non-contact method that is safe for both the camera operator and the people being screened.

FLIR Systems releases Occupancy Management Solution for Brickstream 3D Gen2 people counting system
FLIR Systems releases Occupancy Management Solution for Brickstream 3D Gen2 people counting system

FLIR Systems, Inc. announced availability of the FLIR Occupancy Management Solution for FLIR Brickstream 3D Gen2 to automate occupancy counting within high traffic and capacity-limited areas. To support social distancing guidelines during and following the COVID-19 pandemic, the Occupancy Management Solution provides organisations with an easy-to-use, real-time capacity counting and display tool for multiple entries and exits. Organisations can automate capacity counting for high foot-traffic spaces to maintain social distancing compliance. “Many organisations are manually measuring occupancy, but this process is often inaccurate, cumbersome and expensive,” said Paul Clayton, General Manager, Components Business at FLIR Systems. Automated monitoring solution “FLIR addressed this challenge by introducing a cost-effective, scalable, self-contained, and automated monitoring solution suitable for a variety of locations from grocery stores, stadiums, theaters, transportation hubs, to manufacturing plants, and office spaces.” Current Brickstream 3D Gen2 customers can purchase and add this feature with via a remote firmware upgrade The Occupancy Management Solution is platform agnostic with an integrated IoT architecture, which can be implemented within existing Wi-Fi access points, offering a complete edge-based solution with the Brickstream 3D Gen2 hardware. It provides a simple display dashboard for capacity updates that can be viewed by staff or customers on devices with a web browser. Remote firmware upgrade It may be used as a standalone or integrated into existing perimeter systems, making it ideal for most environments where occupancy must be closely managed. Current Brickstream 3D Gen2 customers can purchase and add this feature with via a remote firmware upgrade. This solution is part of FLIR Systems’ COVID-19 response product portfolio, which includes the FLIR EST camera series, to help organisations improve safety in public places and other high traffic areas. The FLIR Occupancy Management Solution for Brickstream 3D Gen2 is available from FLIR and its global Brickstream distribution partners.