Critical Success Factors in Wireless Video Surveillance

What you need to consider before starting a video over wireless mesh project

3. Thorough Network Design and Bandwidth Planning Are Crucial
When designing the mesh network, ensure that the network provides sufficient throughput and low latency. To maintain high-performance, establish clear line of site between nodes. Use a multi-mesh topology - meshes interconnected by wired or wireless backhaul - to provide maximum bandwidth for each camera.

4. Optimize Mesh Configuration after Installation
In any RF installation, there will be node-pairs with weak RF connections. You will improve performance if you manually eliminate weak links, leaving only the strongest ones. We also recommend you manually set the link speed, rather than leaving all links to auto-negotiate the speed. This helps avoid "link flapping" (intermittent connectivity), which is detrimental to video performance.

5. Consider Camera Settings
As you embark on the video surveillance project, be clear about performance requirements. Is full-motion and full-resolution video required? What compression is acceptable? Realistic performance requirements will help you avoid over-engineering the network. Instead, you can achieve greater coverage for the same project cost.

At the end of the day, it's all about setting proper expectations and creative use of technology. Wireless mesh enables deployment of IP video surveillance where it was previously cost-prohibitive or impractical. This field-tested technology eliminates performance and security concerns attributed to wireless networks: it enables real-time video streaming equal in quality to wired networks and provides multiple levels of security, including support for 4.9 GHz licensed public safety band.

About the author: Mohan Natarajan is vice president of engineering for wireless mesh firm Firetide. The firm has been involved with a number of security and law enforcement deployments, including Dallas, Texas.