Targeting taggers and vandals

Repeated incidents of taggers spray-painting the temporary construction fence at a 21-acre religious and cultural center in Chino Hills, Calif., indicated a need for a more intelligent perimeter protection and monitoring solution. For the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir & Cultural Center, a robust perimeter protection system would be required to allow facility administrators to better monitor the perimeter of the property and protect an intricate and elaborate construction project going on inside the fence. To better protect the entire site and in particular, to safeguard the intricate architectural finishes, the BAPS community turned to an intelligent outdoor surveillance solution from SightLogix, Princeton, N.J.

The new temple, a traditional Hindu Mandir, is built of carved, pink sandstone blocks, each created by artisans and sent from India, together reflecting millions of man-hours of work. Five existing buildings on the Chino Hills site include one whose exterior is intricately hand-carved in teak wood. The Chino Hills project is part of the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS), an organization that began in a small village in India in 1907.

The integrator on the project was FocusMicro, based in Mukilteo, Wash. Before turning to SightLogix technology to protect the site perimeter, BAPS had considered using a fiber optic-based fence sensor system. "We gave them the cost comparisons and the minute we did a demonstration, they immediately made their decision," said Ron Nyberg, regional sales manager of FocusMicro. "For aesthetic reasons, they were happy with the fact that they didn't have to physically strap something to their fence."

"We had looked at other options around the perimeter," added Kaivalyamurti Swami (KV Swami) of the BAPS Center. "We found they would be very expensive, hard to implement and would possibly result in many false alarms. We had a demo of the SightLogix equipment and we were very impressed with its ability to allow for pre-emptive decision making based on the data it provided." The manufacturer was also "very considerate" of BAPS status as a non-profit organization, he added.

System specifics

Six SightSensor visible sensor cameras are positioned on 30-foot poles located between 400 and 1,200 feet apart around the perimeter of the 21-acre site, each viewing an area that overlaps the adjacent sensor's field of view to avoid any blind spots. Designed for long-range protection of high-value assets in any outdoor environment, SightSensor cameras can detect a human or moving target within the visible view of the camera over an area covering as much as 1,500 feet, providing redundant coverage in critical areas for the BAPS facility.

Each camera uses on-board video analytics that determine when an intrusion has occurred. These alarms are set by rules which can include size, direction and other variables. Multiple image processors in each camera compensate for outdoor issues such as camera motion (from wind, for example, when the camera is positioned at the top of a 30-foot pole) and also dynamically
correct lighting conditions and eliminate tree motion. The system also uses AES encryption to eliminate network intrusion and tampering.

Tracking the perimeter

Each 30-foot pole also has a Pelco PTZ analog dome camera automatically controlled by a SightLogix SightTracker. When the SightSensor camera detects an intruder within the viewing area, it provides the target's precise location to the SightTracker which sends a control signal to direct the PTZ camera to zero in and continually track the source of the alarm. The image from the analog dome camera is sent back to the SightTracker, which converts it into an IP camera feed for the video management system.

"The system gives us views of our entire perimeter and the option of monitoring these areas visually as well as intelligently," said KV Swami. "Most importantly, it gives us an early notice of an intrusion or activity on our perimeter so that appropriate decisions can be made."

Full situational awareness

The SightLogix perimeter security solution at BAPS is integrated with Genetec's Omnicast IP video surveillance management system. As a Certified Genetec Partner, the SightLogix outdoor video surveillance system is fully compatible with Omnicast. The pre-integrated solution enables all alarm and target information detected by SightLogix cameras to be displayed by the Genetec video management software (VMS). When a SightLogix camera detects a target that violates a user-defined security policy, the camera provides the precise Geographical Information System (GIS)-based target location to the VMS, which displays the nature of the threat and enables easy viewing of the video on the Genetec system for full situational awareness.

Nyberberg said a lesson from the BAPS installation is the need to look broadly at system costs, rather than fixating on the price of a single component, such as the higher-end cameras. "If you look at it from the overall design perspective, in the end the system will be lower priced based on its long-range performance," he said.