Published on 13 June, 2006
Students and also professors and staff at the College of Technology and Economics in Chur (HTW Chur), Switzerland, are profiting from the contactless LEGIC smart card in the form of a student and staff ID. This has brought their identification IDs into line with the very latest state of the art, and also gives them many advantages besides the visual ID. Thanks to the solution realized by EVIS AG and Kaba AG, the HTW Chur is placing new trails in both student and staff identification, and is emphasizing its image as an innovative college. The new card makes the lives of students and members of staff easier in many ways, and also greatly simplifies study administration.
The HTW Chur is the only college in the Canton of Graubünden at which it is possible to study economics and technology. Together with the "Pädagogische Fachhochschule" (College of Learning) and the Theological College, it forms a recognized training centre for the entire region. The college occupies an architecturally attractive building fitted with the latest equipment on the edge of the town of Chur. The range of courses offered by the HTW Chur covers six degree and three postgraduate courses, two Executive Master of Business Administration, the technical advanced professional school-leaving certificate (Technische Berufsmatura) and a wide-ranging program of further training courses. The college specializes in the fields of tourism, entrepreneurship, telecommunications and electrical engineering, building and design and also information science. Five institutes that transfer potential knowledge and innovation into the economy and society form the interface between technology and the economy.
Contactless smart card and student ID in one card
With the contactless LEGIC smart card for students, professors, employees, guests and visitors, the HTW Chur is emphasizing its innovation and securing its reputation for being right up to date not just with regard to its study program but also in all matters concerning study. With this introduction, 1700 student IDs, 300 staff cards and 100 visitor cards are in use. About 500 new cards will be added annually in the future. Students are issued with their cards when they enrol. With a photograph and signed by the Principal, it is recognized as an identification ID outside the HTW Chur also. For example, holders of a HTW Chur student ID get discounts in some stores, and museums, theatres and concert venues also accept the HTW Chur smart card. Guests, visitors and external users of the HTW Chur, for example the library, can obtain a LEGIC smart card upon payment of a deposit and make use of the services in question. The college has its own thermal sublimation printer for making the cards. This personalizes the cards on site and the chip is initialized according to the area in which it is used.
Centrally administered multi-functionality
Thanks to the contactless LEGIC all-in-one-card technology, it is possible to handle many different functions in parallel. Personal contactless identification is used to open the 800 lockers. Since the HTW Chur requires notebook PCs for some courses, it provides students with their personal secure lockers in which to keep their valuable equipment.
The student ID is also used for payment transactions in the canteens, in the seven vending machines situated at various locations around the HTW Chur campus and for copying and printing study documents. There is a charging station in each of the two main buildings, at which the cards can be charged with up to 300 Franks. Catering from the machines and in the canteens is billed using the debit system. This means that the charged credit is stored on each card. The corresponding amount is deducted from the card when a payment is made. The reading units in the tills and vending machines simply register the processes, which are then forwarded to a central server via the existing network. Thanks to the TCP/IP networking of all reading units, the card balances can be checked at all times and cards can be blocked immediately if necessary. Copiers and printers operate in the credit system. In this case, the credit is saved to a central computer by the reading units following registration. Here too, thanks to the networking of all reading units via TCP/IP, it is possible to check the balance of a card at any time and from every station.
Completely new and with great further enhancement potential
The comprehensive solution that the LEGIC partners EVIS AG and Kaba AG have realized along with other suppliers has been tailored exactly to the specific requirements of the HTW Chur. Thanks to the extendable functionality, it will be possible to integrate additional functions into the card in future. The HTW Chur already has extension plans. In the near future, the intention is to equip the locking systems for individual laboratory doors with LEGIC technology in order to guarantee even greater security and convenience for the user. Urs Heusser, the responsible project leader at the HTW Chur, is convinced that the new LEGIC ID will bring great benefits to all those involved. "Besides the actual student ID, we used to need small change for the vending machines, plus a card for the copiers. Today everything is much easier. Students and staff only carry one single card with them. Thanks to the central data administration and our own printers, we can administer and replace lost or stolen cards ourselves."