Perimeter intrusion detection systems from Gallagher

Residential Security Handbook 2021: Secure Living Residential Estate (Industry)

An effective perimeter security solution has three key factors: prevention, detection and management. If an estate has these three things, they should be able to deter, detect and delay effectively. Gallagher offers a range of advanced perimeter security solutions founded on these three core principles.

Configured and controlled using Gallagher Command Centre, the software at the heart of Gallagher’s integrated security solutions, the company’s effective and reliable solutions can be managed and monitored across multiple sites from one central location.

Hi-Tech Security Solutions: What PIDS or related solutions does your company supply and how does it work?

Dave Solly: Perimeter intrusion detection system (PIDS) is a term used by consultants and industry experts to define a type of solution used in the security or protection of a perimeter, where detection is critical to effective security.

The term PIDS can often be misinterpreted, but simply put, any technology that provides detection on the perimeter can logically be considered a PIDS solution. However, it is most common for the term to be used to define a non-deterrent detection technology.

Gallagher provides a range of PIDS solutions that include:

• Monitored pulse (energised) fence (MPF).

• Z10 Tension Sensor.

• Z20 Disturbance Sensor.


Dave Solly.

While one could argue a MPF is a PIDS solution, many within the industry discount it from this category due to its deterrence capability. Gallagher’s MPF offers powerful deterrence, with attempts to breach the perimeter deterred by an energised pulse sent around the perimeter fence line. Monitored pulse fencing meets stringent safety criteria, while delivering a short but safe shock, making it very difficult to climb the fence whilst avoiding detection.

Zoned fences allow voltage levels to be adjusted to meet varying needs: high for maximum deterrent and low for periods of low risk.

A tension sensor solution incorporates sensors that continuously measure and report on wire tension and monitor fence structure vibration or movement. Sensors can be used with or without an energised pulse to detect intrusion without the intruder being aware.

So, while a MPF does detect intrusion, for the purpose of this perimeter feature, the focus will be on a non-deterrent-based PIDS solution, Gallagher’s Z20 Disturbance Sensor.

The Z20 Disturbance Sensor provides discrete detection, which heightens perimeter security through the intelligent detection of vibration or movement of the fence or other structures. Alarms are generated when the disturbance meets a predefined threshold, providing quick intrusion detection and response times without the intruder being aware. Typically, one Z20 Disturbance Sensor is installed every six metres.

The discrete sensor can be mounted directly onto the fence structure. Additionally, the Z20 Disturbance Sensor can be installed to provide perimeter intrusion detection on structures and objects including fences, walls, cladding, safes, vaults, rooftops and ceilings.

Hi-Tech Security Solutions: What does the full solution comprise?

Solly: The full Z20 solution comprises of an array of sensors connected to a Gallagher Controller 6000 (C6000), a highly intelligent and powerful interface that sits between the Gallagher Command Centre server and the distributed field hardware, capable of processing, storing and communicating data in real-time. It can enforce business rules, monitor its environment, communicate with other integrated systems and make offline access decisions.

Through Command Centre, the end-user can individually configure and tune each sensor and generate graphical reports highlighting the performance over a defined period.

PIDS can be prone to false alarms and while they have a lower false alarm rate to other systems, they are still vulnerable to nuisance alarms. The reporting feature in Command Centre allows operators to see where the noise causing the false alarms on the fence is coming from, enabling operators to tune the sensors based on the report to minimise false alarms.

Hi-Tech Security Solutions: Can users integrate the system into their current security management platform with ease? What integration capabilities are available?

Solly: The power of Gallagher Command Centre allows extensive integration with other systems (some integrations require optional licences). This enables seamless interaction with third-party perimeter products or extends the capabilities of Command Centre at the perimeter to provide greater site management value. For example, Command Centre integrates with and monitors video systems.

A high-level interface between Gallagher Command Centre and the Gallagher perimeter security system delivers multi-site, multi-zone control and monitoring through a single graphical user interface.

The Z20 Disturbance Sensor is managed through Command Centre, meaning the advanced features of Gallagher Command Centre, such as bi-directional integration with various VMS solutions is possible.

Gallagher’s MPF and tension sensing products are all connected within Command Centre, meaning sites can have a combination of energised fence, Z10 and/or Z20 technology, allowing a multi-layered approach to their security system from within a single platform.

Hi-Tech Security Solutions:In which environment is the solution best employed, for example, long perimeters such as estates or shorter perimeters around warehouses etc.?

Solly: Using Z20 Disturbance Sensors on the perimeter is suitable for installation in most environments. One of the biggest advantages is having the ability to individually configure each sensor, making the system highly scalable from shorter perimeters to larger or multi-location sites. Through experience, Gallagher has found the Z20 Disturbance Sensor technology is best deployed on perimeters up to about 2500 m, due to the infrastructure costs of supporting field controllers over larger distances.

To paint a true picture of scalability, while impractical, our perimeter solution can be deployed across 1920 km. Based on the fact that one Gallagher C6000 can support up to 64 Z20 Disturbance Sensors. Then, Command Centre can support a maximum of 5000 C6000s. With 6 m spacing between sensors, the total perimeter Gallagher’s PIDS system can secure is 1920 km in a single instance of Command Centre.


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