Nestled on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea in Southern Europe, the Principality of Monaco is an international hub of wealth and enterprise. People of 119 nationalities live here together successfully. Bankers, businessmen and entrepreneurs, people from all walks of life, mingle together in Monaco, which over time has developed into one of the most cosmopolitan and popular states in the world.
One reason for this popularity is the low criminality in the principality, the result among other things of many years of video surveillance by the German CCTV/IP manufacturer Dallmeier.
The Monégasque government has been using a video surveillance system for a number of years to ensure peace and security throughout the state. However, the analogue system with a manually controlled tape recording had ceased to be suitable a long time ago. Only a portion of the available cameras were being recorded, while the expenses for the regular maintenance works and the exchange of the video tapes was very high. On top of this, the search for relevant image sequences within the recording was time-consuming and laborious. Therefore, the decision was made to install a digital system.
In 2005, the contract for the installation was awarded to Regensburg based company Dallmeier, which had already successfully implemented the video surveillance system at the Casino Monte-Carlo.
Dallmeier developed a custom-made video surveillance solution which met the customer’s requirements regarding quality and ease of use. One of the decisive criteria for choosing Dallmeier was the easy integration of the existing analogue video matrix. Dallmeier had designed a hybrid solution in which the existing system could be converted systematically to a fully digital system. This gradual transition from one system to the other has two advantages: a high degree of investment and cost control as well as simplified integration.
The virtual matrix (digital crossbar) developed by Dallmeier is ideally suited for the requirements on site in Monaco. It enables the transmission and recording of video and audio signals in broadcast quality via an Ethernet/IP network. With this technology the video signals of any number of cameras in public areas are encoded and, if required, transmitted via the IP network. Using the management software SeMSy the system can be very easily and intuitively controlled and administered.
The core of the system is made up of DIS devices. These are real-time streamers and recorders which transmit and record a total of 520 cameras (fixed cameras and PTZ cameras) with redundant/mirrored storage. They are in operation 24/7. Hence, the entire city area is monitored by video surveillance around the clock and events can be investigated in detail.
Owing to its flexible design the DIS-2/M is the ideal solution for monitoring critical areas which require a high recording quality and real-time transmission in compact form. Each system consists of up to 10 modules which operate based on the security operating system Linux. Both a video and audio signal can be connected to every module. Per channel, four input and four output contacts are available for control and switching tasks. Additionally, every module is equipped with a RS-232/RS-485 interface for the control of PTZ cameras.
The system’s modular structure and the hot plug functionality of the single modules, which the redundant power packs of the component rack dispose of as well, ensure a high availability of the complete solution. Based on the DIS-2/M the Dallmeier virtual matrix can be realised in a space-saving and cost-effective way.
The systems record directly onto the integrated memory and thus ensure a maximum availability of recording data – even in the case of network problems and failures. This decentralised storage concept furthermore minimises network requirements such as bandwidth. Simultaneous to the recording, the live transmission of camera signals as well as the display of recorded display are possible without any restrictions.
The DIS-2/M has LGC Forensics certification, which means that swapped image sequences are accepted as evidence in court.
Vigilant electronic eyes
When selecting new network cameras the Sûreté Publique of Monaco decided on Dallmeier IP cameras. The cameras are installed in Police Headquarters and monitor all entrances to the main building. The detention cells located there are also equipped with cameras that record onto DIS-2/M NSU IP servers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
In the technical and operative security centre three operating stations are available to the personnel. As part of the renovation and modernisation of the control centre the Dallmeier system was integrated with a large monitor wall with a display surface covering seven square metres.
The evaluation and analysis of the recordings or events are very efficient and fast due to the use of the Security Management System SeMSy, which is specially adapted to the requirements in Monaco. For example, it has a user interface custom-made for the customer.
Three VMC-1 'Eagle' video management centres ideally complement the management software. All functionalities that can be expected of a modern video management centre are united and clearly distributed on the three components of the VMC-1 Eagle (joystick, jog-shuttle and keyboard with monitor). The jog-shuttle is perfectly suited for finding certain snapshots in a video sequence while the joystick allows easy steering of the movable cameras. What sets the VMC-1 apart from products by other manufacturers is the possibility of displaying both recorded video material and live images on the integrated monitor and, for example, showing maps or search functions.
Tested and expanded
Since the video system has proved itself in daily use, five years ago, the responsible persons decided to add an ultramodern number plate recognition system. A total of 15 DI-Detectors NPR by Dallmeier were therefore installed primarily at the streets leading into and out of state territory. Four cameras are connected to each system: two NPR cameras, one for each direction, and two overview cameras. The NPR systems were professionally installed by specially trained technicians and enable identification of automobile number plates from standing and moving vehicles on 30 traffic lanes within the Principality of Monaco.
If problems arise, the persons in charge can use the interlinked cameras to follow the path of the vehicle involved. In addition, they receive an alert if the vehicle in question has been stolen or is suspicious. This facilitates any search.
Because of the modularity and scalability of the Dallmeier system, the Sûreté Publique de Monaco have an extremely future-proof system to work with, which can be expanded and adjusted easily at any time.
Frank Oetjen, project sales manager at Dallmeier, summarises: “The customer’s main requirement in selecting a system was to have a highly available, modular, network-based system, which uses the existing infrastructure and also has excellent image quality, but which has been prepared at the same time for future expansions. Based on the SeMSy technology, we have created a solution that has been adapted in the best possible way to the customer’s requirements and that has already been expanded several times.”
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