Process optimisation for ports: CCTV / IP video surveillance technology



Roland Meier, Head of Panomera Multifocal Sensor Systems, Dallmeier, Regensburg, Germany


In the contemporary age, the range of applications for video surveillance technology is no longer limited to traditional security tasks such as the detection of unwanted intruders, or even the prevention of terrorist attacks. Video surveillance has become an indispensable tool in designing all the processes across the port arena in the most efficient way aspossible. Some areas in which surveillance has become intrinsic include access control, the prevention of accidents at sluices, and the administration of the commodity flows throughout the harbour.  One thing that always applies to ports:time is money, and whenever the stream of goods comes to a halt for some reason, profits are at stake.

Access control

Whether by land or by water the port arena may only be accessed by authorised personnel. High-resolution cameras therefore detect anybody who enters the premises and document the ship traffic, as well as the movements of people and vehicles at the port's gateways. The multifocal sensor (MFS) system Panomera is ideal for the surveillance of expansive port areas. Unlike single sensor cameras, MFS technology utilises several sensors, each of which has a different focal length. Consequently, the system can reach areas much further away than the industry standard, and can display long distance images with the same image quality as objects that are up-close to the camera. This makes it possible to monitor large areas and distances from a single location, achieving this in real time with uniform image resolution, high dynamics and consistent focal depth. In contrast to PTZ cameras, Panomera records the entire scene at all times, even while only a section of the picture is being looked at live. Therefore, an operator can carry out his tasks without undue pressure, and without missing anything. Furthermore, the same scene can be viewed in live and playback modes at the same time. With MFS technology, an unlimited number of operators can navigate across the entire scene independently of each other. Although all operators are connected with the same camera, each user can select their view individually and zoom or pan as they desire. Often, the CCTV/IP video surveillance system is complemented by intelligent video analysis systems which automatically carry out certain processes such as opening barriers or issuing alarms in cases where unidentified vehicles or ships are noticed.

Theft protection

Numerous goods and containers are stored at a port’s reloading points, and they all have to be protected from theft. With the analysis ‘Intruder’, Dallmeier offers a solution for securing certain areas against unauthorised access. Intruder is a development entirely based on Dallmeier’s SEDOR technology, and it allows for effective surveillance both outdoors and indoors. For example, the system determines if an object approaches an area, from which direction it is coming, and how long it stays in a certain area. Based on the predetermined classifications within Intruder, the system is able to differentiate between an object that is a person and an object that is an animal. Furthermore, quick and comprehensive validity checks  reduce false alarms to a minimum withoutmissing real alarm instances.

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