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Thermal surveillance cameras boost efficiency, cost savings

The video surveillance industry has undergone significant changes in the past several years, largely driven by technological improvements that have made surveillance cameras applicable to a wider range of applications. Thermal devices, in particular, are helping push the market forward, according to a report by Business Solutions Magazine.

Thermal imaging cameras, which detect heat to create images, have come a long way since their introduction. In the past, these tools were only effective at night, as heat from the sun often skewed the picture. This is no longer the case, however, as innovative thermal surveillance cameras can be used at any time.

"This capability for thermal cameras to work during the daytime didn’t exist a few years ago," surveillance expert John Romanowich said, according to Business Solutions Magazine. "New imager sensitivity and greater processing power at the edge has made this a round-the-clock solution and it's unlocking a new market opportunity for [value-added resellers]."

Other advances, including the proliferation of IP-based offerings and advanced analytics, have made it easier for companies to use innovative integrated security systems that produce fewer alarms because cameras can identify and understand what is being captured on film. In the past, organizations were forced to use disparate solutions, which made monitoring incidents more challenging and expensive.

"Those systems were woefully ineffective because the sensors would generate nuisance alerts and they were costly because two systems were involved, a sensor system and a video system," Romanowich told the news provider. "Thermal cameras with analytics combine these two systems into one and eliminate issues associated with nuisance alerts."

A separate report by Homeland Security News Wire noted that the global market for infrared technologies is forecast to generate $2.6 billion in revenue by 2017. As the technology continues to evolve, it will likely be leveraged in multiple industries for a variety of applications.

Surveillance adaptations broaden its range
Besides security, surveillance solutions are being used for a number of purposes, largely due to the advent of analytics and outdoor products. Business Solutions Magazine said outdoor thermal surveillance cameras are similar to their indoor cousins, as they can both boost operational efficiency.

"[The proliferation of thermal imaging] opens up a whole new world of understanding about what is happening outdoors, from early detection scenarios to looking at behavior that could increase operational efficiency," Romanowich told Business Solutions Magazine.

A separate report by Source Security said thermal imaging devices can be highly effective solutions for perimeter defense strategies. As CCTV systems become more advanced and help the public and private sector develop more effective crime-deterrent programs, thermal surveillance cameras can be an innovative and cost-efficient alternative to implementing surveillance and external lighting.

This is because the tools have a full awareness of what is going on around them and can work in virtually any weather condition at any time, Source Security noted. They also consume less power than some other perimeter security solutions, making them an appealing technology as the ongoing macroeconomic crisis continues.

There is no doubt that surveillance systems are an important part of any organization's defensive strategies. As the technologies continue to evolve and mature as time moves forward, it will become increasingly important that decision-makers adopt innovative solutions to remain competitive and protected in the growing face of adversity. Although neglecting to deploy thermal surveillance cameras will not necessarily be disastrous, implementing the tools may provide executives with a number of benefits they previously didn't know existed.

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