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Site Protection (Hardware) Winner: OPTEX Bridge powered by CHeKT

The OPTEX Bridge powered by CHeKT is a data bridge which can be connected to zones on any professional quality intruder detection control panel. It is effectively ‘invisible’ to the alarm system. It also connects to ONVIF Profile S-compatible cameras, allowing images from zones in alarm to be sent to an ARC or central control room when an event takes place.

By bridging the two separate systems, it allows an intruder detection system to be supplemented by a single camera, a basic video surveillance system or a combination of devices, ensuring legacy equipment can be reused and cost-effective upgrades are always possible.

The OPTEX Bridge powered by CHeKT also includes a cloud service which enables interaction between the site, the ARC and the user.

Installation of the Bridge is claimed to be quick and easy. It requires looping of the zone wiring through the hardware device. The next step is to add an ONVIF Profile S-compatible camera, and this is then linked to the relevant zone. There is no need for port forwarding or firewall configurations, and mapping between alarm panel zones and video devices has been designed to be intuitive.

Because the Bridge is used for visual verification rather than monitoring, transmission of data is quick and simple. This ensures the delivery of relevant images does not cause a delay in the handling of alarm events. There is also an option for a designated user to receive the images, allowing them to accept or reject an event once the video clip has been viewed.

When an alarm activation occurs, the alarm data is sent to the ARC or control room as normal. The ARC operator can then view the associated images, via a cloud portal, within a matter of seconds. It is important to note that ARCs will not require additional software or dedicated hardware to do this. They will then be presented with images which show the cause of the event.

Based on the visual verification, they can either action a police response or close the alarm.

It has to be accepted that whilst visual verification is significantly more effective than sequential verification, it’s not always perfect. If the operator is unsure as to whether or not the alarm event is valid, they can access video devices at the site via a monitoring portal if authorised to do so.

If there remains any doubt about the validity of an event, the operator can push the images and alarm data to the user, via an app. The operator receives a real-time notification if the user is viewing the information. This allows them to wait when they’re aware the images are being viewed. If there is no response from the user, they can proceed with passing the alarm to the police.

When the user receives and views the images, they can – via a single button press on their smart device – send a message to the ARC to either action the alarm or it clear it down.

The Bridge hardware is a small device, measuring approximately 82 x 100 x 36mm. The unit supports four alarm input zones and one trouble output. It includes a 10/100Base T LAN port and is powered by a 12V DC source.

Manufactured from white polycarbonate, the device also includes an SDHC card slot and an audio output. LEDs are used for status updates (indicating power, status and alarm condition).
The Bridge can be wired for zone passthrough or relay output, offering a range of options to suit various panels and sites.

OPTEX Bridge powered by CHeKT allows any professional intruder alarm panel to be upgraded to deliver monitored visual verification, quickly and cost-effectively.

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