Critical infrastructure security

A roundup of recent security applications and installations


Garland Power & Light, the third largest municipal utility in Texas, has deployed a Video Data Management and Retention platform from Intransa as part of an upgrade to the company’s surveillance systems for physical infrastructure protection. “The IP surveillance system is a major component in our ability to monitor and protect our critical infrastructure,” says David Grubbs, GP&L’s Regulatory and Compliance Director. “Because of the design of the Intransa system, we have been able to meet the bandwidth requirements of a large number of cameras recording continuously as well as vast storage capability to meet our storage requirements of up to 90 days of recorded video.”

GP&L has three gas-fired generating plants with a total of 640 megawatts of generating capacity, supported by a transmission system of 23 substations and 133 miles of transmission lines.

Preferred Technology Solutions architected a complete solution for GP&L that included Axis Communications megapixel cameras and the Milestone XProtect Enterprise Video Management System, supported by an Intransa BuildingBlock Security-Grade Video Retention platform. “Working with Intransa, we have integrated the three brands of previously installed IP cameras and are able to utilize the newer technologies and cameras as they become available,” Grubbs says. “We are already beginning the next phase expansion of the storage system.”

Port of Miami

A waterside radar system from Honeywell provides situational awareness of the waterways surrounding the Port of Miami.

The Port of Miami, one of the United States’ busiest seaports, has implemented a waterside radar system from Honeywell that provides situational awareness of the waterways in the general areas surrounding the port. The installation makes use of radar arrays — installed by Honeywell-certified supplier Adesta, LLC — to monitor ship traffic. The Honeywell Radar Video Surveillance (RVS) system serves as the backbone of each array and enables authorities to respond quickly to potential threats by integrating waterside radar with an Automatic Identification System (AIS), Global Positioning System (GPS) and video data.

The RVS software enables security personnel to create rules for identifying potential threats, including defined alarm zones, ship speed and direction, time of day and other operator inputs. Intruders detected by the radar system are depicted on the RVS Graphical User Interface to enable security personnel to use Honeywell’s ACUIX pan/tilt/zoom (PTZ) cameras to assess and track the targets.

Denton, Texas

Denton Municipal Electric uses SmarterFence from Smarter Security Systems in conjunction with 100-plus cameras to strengthen substation security.

The city of Denton, Texas has secured the perimeter of its eight electrical substations with SmarterFence from Smarter Security Systems. “While we had cameras, that wasn’t enough,” says Coy Werner of the City of Denton. “We needed something to alert us at the perimeter that an intrusion was occurring so we’d have time to respond.”

Denton Municipal Electric uses SmarterFence in conjunction with its 100-plus cameras to strengthen its substation security. Upon sensing an intrusion, the fence sends an audible alarm to dispatch and the view from the camera nearest the intrusion is brought to the forefront. System Operators use the cameras to quickly detect the cause of the alarm and respond accordingly

SmarterFence is a fiber optic intrusion detection system designed to protect fenced-in property by warning of intruders attempting to penetrate the perimeter. Its ability to tune out environmental nuisances and detect real intrusion attempts allows it to provide early warning of intruders by alarming any attempt to cut or climb a perimeter security fence.

Aqua America

Aqua America, the largest investor owned water company in the United States, has deployed the Situator situation management system from Orsus to integrate and manage multiple security systems and other devices at its water-related facilities across Pennsylvania.

The project involves using Situator to monitor and manage Aqua America’s access control, video surveillance, fiber optic intrusion detection and radar systems. The system, which was deployed by systems integrator Unlimited Technology, is currently used to integrate and manage data from these systems at Aqua America’s pump stations, water treatment facilities, water storage tanks and dams.