The I-CUBE Web site is packed with information on our 3 product lines, being IA, LPR and Facial solutions. I-CUBE invites you to explore the site and download the technical documentation, news items, photos, description of sample installations, system simulations and recognition demos.  If  you can not find what you are looking for, PLEASE send I-CUBE an e-mail, SMS, Fax, letter or give us a call (+27 31 764 3077 or + 27 82 562 8225), it would be our pleasure to assist.        
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Home
 
I-Cube advantage
  
Tutorial
 
Q for a LPR request
 
Diversity
 
See Car app
 
Products
 
Choice of applications
 
License Plate Recognition
 
SeeCAR Product LINE
 
Access Control
 
SEE Traffic 
 
seeway
 
Average Speed Determination
 
FILM
 
Train / Rail
 
Weigh bridge integration
 
Plane
 
CONTAINER 
 
LPR DLL
 
LPR cameras
 
BROCHURES
 
Overview
 
See LANE
 
SEE TRAFFIC
 
LPR Intro
 
Applications:
 
LPR SOLUTION FOR MOVING VEHICLES
 
Hospital Presentation
 
Hyster Recognition
 
Estates 
 
VEHICLE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
 
Proactive early warning crime prevention
 
LPR use in marketing
  
Mobile LPR
 
Business Park
 
Car lift & GO
 
Shopping Centres
 
Average Speed Determination
 
Weigh Bridges
 
Casino Access Control
 
Mobile LPR
 
 
Road block Results
 
SAB weigh bridges
 
 
 
Where to Buy
 
 
 
Support
 
Demo user manual
 
USER MANUALS
 
HTSOL DLL 
 
Bloem tender
 
RTMC tender

DEMOS

 LPR Demo of RSA Customised Plates. zip (3 MB)

 LPR TRAP (ZIP 3 MB)

 LPR SA DEMO (1 MB)

 SPEED DETERMINATION DEMO (2 MB)

SeeLane Install V6.1

Mobile LPR Player

 
Contact Us
 
Feed Back
 
 
News 
 
Diversity of LPR - Article in Security Solutions Vol11 No2 (PDF)
 
Automatic Drunk Drivers ID & apprehension
 
I-Cube Intro Brochure

Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) for Law Enforcement

KZN gets high-tech speed cameras

High Tech Crime Fighting

New speed monitoring system tested

Road Block LPR Solutions

Reference Sites
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

License Plate Recognition - A Tutorial

This web page provides an overview of LPR systems. The description starts 'technical' then proceeds to the 'market' view.

Contents:

What is LPR?
Technology Highlights
Other Names
Plates and Images
What's in an image
Does it work?
Elements of typical LPR systems
How does it Work?
Typical applications
More Information and links

(1) What is LPR?

LPR (License Plate Recognition) is an image-processing technology used to identify vehicles by their license plates. This technology is used in various security and traffic applications, such as the access-control system featured in the following animation:

Access Control system

In the above example: while the vehicle approaches the gate, the LPR unit automatically "reads" the license plate registration number, compares to a predefined list and opens the gate if there is a match.

(2) Technology Highlights:

This technology is gaining popularity in security and traffic installations. The technology concept assumes that all vehicles already have the identity displayed (the plate!) so no additional transmitter or responder is required to be installed on the car.

The system uses illumination (such as Infra-red) and a camera to take the image of the front or rear of the vehicle, then an image-processing software analyzes the images and extracts the plate information. This data is used for enforcement, data collection, and (as in the access-control system featured above) can be used to open a gate if the car is authorized or keep a time record on the entry or exit for automatic payment calculations.

The LPR system significant advantage is that the system can keep an image record of the vehicle which is useful in order to fight crime and fraud ("an image is worth a thousand words"). An additional camera can focus on the driver face and save the image for security reasons. Additionally, this technology does not need any installation per car (such as in all the other technologies that require a transmitter added on each car or carried by the driver).

(3) Other Names

LPR is also called in different references as:
  • Automatic Vehicle Identification (AVI)
  • Car Plate Recognition (CPR)
  • Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR)
  • Car Plate Reader (CPR)

(4) Plate and images

LPR units are based on images of the front and/or rear plates.

The following example shows a typical installation of an access-control system in the gate of a secured office compound.

access-control example

The car, with the plate number: W856RKX, is just exiting from the secured area and is picked up by the LPR system which identifies it as an authorized car and opens the gate. A welcome display (which includes the vehicle number and driver name) is displayed in the large outdoor display in the back of the car.

A typical image captured by the Infra-red illumination and camera unit is shown in the following image (this image is of the same car above). The image information is read by the LPR unit and is analyzed and recognized automatically. Note that the image is monochrome since the infra-red spectrum is above the normal color spectrum.

example of an image

Since the vehicle plates are based on different Country standards, they usually different in form, shape and material. Therefore the LPR systems are Country specific and are adapted to the Country where they are installed and used (in the above case - a UK installation). You can see a large collection of plates of different Countries - download some recognition demoes with the link at the bottom of this page.

(5) What's in an image

The above image of the front side of the car, shown in a typical format, is composed of 256 grey levels ranging from black (grey level 0) to white (grey level 255). For a typical format there are 768 X 288 pixels (PICture ELements), or about 0.2 Million elements. This vast amount of information is processed by the recognition software in order to automatically locate and read the plate.

The following image shows a zoom into the above image sample. The initial image starts from the raw data, then repeatedly zooms up (with factor x2) until the pixel level.

zoom into an image

The computer processing needs to work on the global information (the entire image) for detecting the plate, then zoom into the data in order to handle the small details and finally extract the registration data. The end result of the recognition process is a string (in the above case, "W859RKX"). This transformation of the image data into a result string is actually a very large compression of the original raw data (1:31600 !).

(6) Does it Work?

Early LPR systems sufferred from a low recognition rate, lower than required by practical systems. The external effects (sun and headlights, bad plates, wide number of plates types) and the limited level of the recognition software and vision hardware yielded low quality systems.

However, recent improvements in the software and hardware have made the LPR systems much more reliable and wide spread. You can now find these systems in numerous installations and the number of systems are growing exponentially, efficiently automating more and more tasks in different market segments. In many cases the LPR unit is added as retrofit in addition to existing solutions, such as a magnetic card reader or ticket dispenser/reader, in order to add more functionality to the existing facility.

Even if the recognition is not absolute, the application that depends on the recognition results can compensate the errors and produce a virtually flawless system. For example, when comparing the recognition of the entry time of a car to the exit time in order to establish the parking time, the match (of entry verses exit) can allow some small degree of error without making a mistake. This intelligent integration can overcome some of the LPR flaws and yield dependable and fully automatic systems.

(7) Elements of typical LPR systems

LPR systems normally consist of the following units:
  • Camera(s) - that take the images of the car (front or rear side)
  • Illumination - a controlled light that can bright up the plate, and allow day and night operation. In most cases the illumination is Infra-Red (IR) which is invisible to the driver.
  • Frame grabber - an interface board between the camera and the PC, allows the software to read the image information
  • Computer - normally a PC running Windows or Linux. It runs the LPR application which controls the system, reads the images, analyzes and identifies the plate, and interfaces with other applications and systems.
  • Software - the application and the recognition package. Usually the recognition package is supplied as a DLL (Dynamic Link Library).
  • Hardware - various input/output boards used to interface the external world (such as control boards and networking boards)
  • Database - the events are recorded on a local database or transmitted over the network. The data includes the recognition results and (optionally) the vehicle or drver-face image file
The following illustration shows a typical configuration of a LPR system (for example, for 2-lanes-in and 2-lanes-out access control system). The system ("SeeLane") is a typical example of such system.
The SeeLane application runs as a background Windows application in the PC (shown in the center), and interfaces to a set of SeeCarHead camera/illumination units (one for each vehicle) which are interfaced by the frame grabber. The application controls the sensors and controls via an I/O card that is connected thru a terminal block to the inputs and outputs.
The application displays the results and can also send them via serial communication and via DDE messages to other application(s). It writes the information to local database or to optional remote databases (via the network).


You can point on the items and the bottom text area will display a description.






For more information on this system, use the link below.

8) How does it Work?

The following example shows how a typical access-control system works. It follows the order of the animation above.

The vehicle approached the secured area, and starts the cycle by stepping over a magnetic loop detector (which is the most popular vehicle sensor). The loop detector senses the car and its presence is signaled to the LPR unit.
The LPR unit activates the illumination (invisible Infra-red in most cases) and takes pictures of the front or rear plates from the LPR camera (shown at the left side of the gate). The images of the vehicle include the plate and the pixel information is read by the LPR unit's image processing hardware (the frame grabber).
The LPR unit analyzes the image with different image processing software algorithms, enhences the image, detects the plate position, extracts the plate string, and identifies the fonts using special artificial intelligence methods (such as Neural Networks).

Most LPR units are based on an application running on PC under Windows. Other systems exist that do not require a PC (such as the stand-alone unit shown in this illustration).

The LPR unit checks if the vehicle appears on a predefined list of authorized cars, and if found - it signals to open the gate by activating its relay. The unit can also switch on a green "go-ahead" light or red "stop" light. The unit can also display a Welcome! message with personalized data.
The authorized vehicle enters into the secured area. After passing the gate its detector closes the gate. Now the system waits for the next vehicle to approach the secured area.
Other types of applications use the information retrieved from the image for different purposes. For example, to prepare a speed or red-light violation ticket. All rely on automatic image understanding process performed by the LPR unit, which actually mimics the human mind.

(9) Typical applications

LPR applications have a wide range of applications, which use the extracted plate number and optional images to create automated solutions for various problems. These include the following sample applications (for more information, click on the link in the bottom of the tutorial) :
Parking - the plate number is used to automatically enter pre-paid members and calculate parking fee for non-members (by comparing the exit and entry times). The optional driver face image can be used to prevent car hijacking.

In this example, a car is entering a car park in a busy shopping center. The car plate is recognized and stored. When the car will later exit (through the gate on the right side) the car plate will be read again. The driver will be charged for the duration of the parking. The gate will automatically open after payment - or if the vehicle has a monthly permit.
Access Control - a gate automatically opens for authorized members in a secured area, thus replacing or assisting the security gaurd. The events are logged on a database and could be used to search the history of events.

In this example, the gate has just been automatically raised for the authorized vehicle, after being recognized by the system. A large outdoor display greets the driver. The event (result, time and image) is logged in the database.
Tolling - the car number is used to calculate the travel fee in a toll-road, or used to double-check the ticket.

In this installation, the plate is read when the vehicle enters the toll lane and presents a pass card. The information of the vehicle is retrieved from the database and compared against the pass information. In case of fraud the operator is notified.
Border Control - the car number is registered in the entry or exits to the Country, and used to monitor the border crossings. It can short the border crossing turnaround time and cut short the typical long lines.

This installation covers the borders of the entire Country. Each vehicle is registered into a central database and linked to additional information such as the passport data. This is used to track all border crossings.
Stolen cars - a list of stolen cars or unpaid fines is used to alert on a passing 'hot' cars. The 'black list' can be updated in real time and provide immediate alarm to the police force. The LPR system is deployed on the roadside, and performs a real-time match between the passing cars and the list. When a match is found a siren or display is activated and the police officer is notified with the detected car and the reasons for stopping the car.
Enforcement - the plate number is used to produce a violation fine on speed or red-light systems The manual process of preparing a violation fine is replaced by an automated process which reduces the overhead and turnaround time. The fines can be viewed and paid on-line.

The photo is an example of a speeding car caught by the traffic camera. The rear vehicle plate is automatically extracted off the scanned film image, replacing a tedious manual operation and the need to develope and print the violation. The datablock on the top-right side is additional speeding information that is automatically extracted from the developed film and used to complete the fine notice and inserted to a database. The violators can pay the fine on-line and are presented with this photo as a proof with the speeding information.
Traffic control - the vehicles can be directed to different lanes according to their entry permits (such as in University complex projects). The system effectively reduces traffic congestions and the number of attendents.

In this installation the LPR based system classifies the cars on a congested entrance to 3 types (authorized, known visitors, and unknown cars for inquiry) and guides them to the appropriate lane. This system reduced the long waiting lines and simplified the security officers work load.
Marketing Tool - the car plates may be used to compile a list of frequent visitors for marketing purposes, or to build a traffic profile (such as the frequency of entry verses the hour or day).


Travel - A number of LPR units are installed in different locations in city routes and the passing vehicle plate numbers are matched between the points. The average speed and travel time between these points can be calculated and presented in order to monitor municipal traffic loads. Additionally, the average speed may be used to issue a speeding ticket.

In this example the car is recognized at two points, and the violation shows the photos of both locations which were taken on bridges on top of the highway. The average speed of the car is calculated from both points, and displayed if the speed passed a violation threshold, and optionally printed.
Airport Parking - In order to reduce ticket fraud or mistakes, the LPR unit is used to capture the plate number and image of the cars. The information may be used to calculate the parking time or provide a proof of parking in case of a lost ticket - a typical problem in airport parking which have relatively long (and expensive) parking durations.

This photo shows the gate of a long term airport parking. The car is recognzied on entry and the data is later used to track the real entry time in case of a lost ticket.

You can see a typical installation for each application type in the web link below. Additionally, you can visit the product selection guide there that matches the market need to the solution, and also points to sample applications.

(10) For more Information:

For more information, contact Barry @ I-Cube

You can also contact the technical support for more information on this technology and its implementations.

 

Solution Brief

August 2005

Abstract

This brief provides a short introduction to Internet Protocol (IP) surveillance systems that

use digital cameras networked via standard Ethernet networks. The brief explains basic

technology concepts, provides a benefit overview, describes advantages for specific

security applications in selected vertical markets, and details the necessary requirements

and considerations for implementation of the technology.

IP Surveillance

The Next Generation Security Camera Application

IP Surveillance Solutions 2

D-Link Systems, Inc.

August 2005

IP Surveillance Technology

The growth in IP Surveillance systems is quickly gaining significant ground on

conventional analog closed circuit television (CCTV) security camera installations for

reasons of both performance and cost-benefits.

IP Surveillance systems digitize video streams at each camera on the network, this digital

stream is then transferred over a standard wired or wireless Internet Protocol (IP)

network. Unlike traditional analog closed circuit television systems that transport analog

signals back to a centralized video recording device, IP surveillance systems digitize and

compress the video at each camera and send a digital signal across a common IP or

Ethernet network. IP Surveillance employs a decentralized data encoding system that

sends binary data across a shared, standards-based IP network – the same one used for

email, Web pages, file transfers, and other data network applications.

Since digital networked surveillance is IP-based, users can monitor, store, and archive

video, audio and associated application data over the Internet or across private data

networks. Compressed video can be carried anywhere that the IP network extends as

opposed to CCTV systems that are built on and require dedicated coaxial cabling.

Anyone with the proper access credentials and a standard browser can monitor video as

well as control and configure the camera from any location that has Internet or private

network connectivity.

Since networking equipment and IP protocols adhere to open standards, the IP

Surveillance system itself is low cost, and new integration opportunities and applications

are continually coming into focus. Event-driven alert and alarm software for IP systems

already far exceed the capabilities of old CCTV systems. Digital IP cameras can be used

to monitor on a 24x7 basis and be configured to trigger on events while immediately

alerting administrators when certain conditions arise or specific thresholds are reached.

 

Benefits of IP Surveillance

A growing number of security organizations, small and medium sized businesses, and

home users throughout the world use networked IP Surveillance equipment, and industry

analysts expect that number to rise dramatically as organizations of all sizes continue to

understand the benefits of the technology. The advantages that IP Surveillance has over

traditional analog systems are numerous, and the benefits usually fall into one of the four

following categories:

? Cost Effectiveness

When compared to analog CCTV systems, networked IP camera systems have several

cost advantages. First, the wiring required is less expensive. Most buildings contain

installed Cat-5 data networking cable, and if additional wiring is necessary, Cat-5

costs less per foot than single purpose analog coaxial cable. Thus, IP Surveillance can

often use the existing wired infrastructure and not require the installation of a second

and parallel cabling infrastructure.

A digital, packet-switched network enables centralized, cost-effective management.

IP networks carry all kinds of data, including video, audio and standard document

files like email and web pages. Any existing infrastructure and personnel used to

manage the data network can easily absorb a new IP Surveillance application.

Infrastructure maintenance, monitoring and management of IP Surveillance

applications are easily learned without the need for specialized components, cabling,

or training required for a separate analog CCTV alternative. The elimination of a

separately installed and managed infrastructure will save time and resources.

Since IP networks employ well documented, understood, and heavily deployed

standards for cabling and transmission protocols, the costs for equipment and service

have diminished as application adoption increases. Technology advancements and

adoption have already had a profound effect on the price of networking equipment

and digital cameras. Expect that trend to continue as competition naturally flourishes

in a standards-based deployment environment.

? Advanced Functionality and Performance

Event Driven Intelligence

One of the most compelling reasons to adopt IP network surveillance is event-driven

intelligence. A regular digital video recorder (DVR) based surveillance system is only

as smart as the person monitoring it at the moment it is being monitored. With IP

networks there is access to a wide range of automated software settings and alert

systems that make security management more efficient, less costly, more intelligent

and less error prone.

IP systems handle motion detection, event triggers, and alert automation and have a

multitude of options for changing frame rates, resolution and timed record cycles.

For example, certain cameras might only send data to the recording servers when a

specific threshold of motion is detected. Sensitivity settings can be adjusted so

insignificant movements will not trigger a recording. This saves recording space and

human analysis time by keeping only what is relevant to the particular security

situation at hand. With digital images, integration is possible with available third

party applications for license plate recognition, people counting, Geographic

Information Systems (GIS), and face recognition.

Alerts can also be configured and emailed to any email address or group and retrieved

with any IP-connected communication system containing an email client. This

includes notifications to handheld PDAs, cell phones, or other IP connected devices.

With an analog camera system, none of these applications can be performed without

some digital conversion. The multiple analog/digital conversions required, however,

reduces image quality. With IP Surveillance systems, the digitization process occurs

once at the camera and is carried across the digital IP network. The video data starts

digital and stays digital throughout the infrastructure.

Superior Image Quality

Network IP Surveillance equipment also provides better image quality than analog

systems. Analog coax cables can compromise image clarity, since signals can degrade

over long cabling distances. Analog cameras adhere to NTSC/PAL standards,

effectively limiting resolution to 0.4 megapixels.

Network cameras, on the other hand, use progressive scan technology and high

resolutions that depict moving objects more clearly and cover larger areas with

sharper images. These technological advantages enable digital pan, tilt and zoom

features that analog systems can only perform with additional, dedicated cabling.

Securing the Security Camera

IP Surveillance systems can encrypt data across the network, so only the cameras and

servers know what kind of packets to expect across the system. Without the proper

authentication keys, outsiders cannot break into the network to steal video data or

feed false video into the system.

With analog systems, access is needed to the cabling to tap into the electrical circuit.

Video can be fed into the wire or recorded off of it at will without raising any

intrusion alarms. The analog system sees electricity coming across the wires. IP

systems are much more difficult to compromise because encryption requires two

nodes that agree on exactly what is being sent and received (and have the algorithms

or keys that decode the data). Any interruption to the data stream can automatically

trigger alarms and alerts.

One-Way or Two-Way Audio

Since IP Surveillance systems are merely passing around information packets, any

kind of additional data (sound, graphics, applications, event triggers, etc) can

accompany the data stream. Thus, one-way or two-way audio requires only

microphones and speakers at the end points when used with appropriate IP cameras

that support audio capabilities. Analog systems, on the other hand, can’t handle single

channel audio or two-way sound channels without added cabling and expense.

Deploying audio with the video images becomes very simple in IP Surveillance

applications.

Back-Up and Storage

Storage systems are easier to configure and more reliable with IP systems as well. All

the redundant components found in standard computer based systems like RAID

disks, uninterruptible power supplies and secure off-site storage can be leveraged in

IP Surveillance applications. In many cases, the infrastructure may already exist and

available staff will not have to learn new storage systems. Analog systems, however,

require proprietary recording and back-up systems that add significant component,

maintenance, and training costs as the system grows. In addition analog tape based

recording systems require ongoing replacement tapes. After a period of use the tapes

become stretched, can no longer be effectively used, and must be replaced.

? Flexibility of Deployment

Standards Based

The Internet Protocol itself offers a wide range of flexibility because it is a global

standard that runs on a wide range of open, standardized, low-cost equipment. “Best

of breed” products and services can be combined from an assortment of vendors.

Price competition and vendor choices truly make it a buyer’s market.

Of course, IP Surveillance data can be securely viewed anytime, anywhere from a

standard Web browser like Internet Explorer. This simply cannot be done with analog

systems that are relegated to the local redundant cabling infrastructure that has been

established. Remote site monitoring becomes difficult with analog CCTV systems.

 

PoE and 802.11 Wireless LAN

There are a couple of other features or standards that make IP Surveillance even more

attractive: Power over Ethernet (PoE) and 802.11 wireless LAN connectivity.

With external PoE adapters, power is delivered to the IP Surveillance cameras via

Cat-5 Ethernet cabling. This eliminates the need for costly electrical wiring and opens

up more opportunities for effective camera placement. Equipment can be placed

based on the needs of the application versus where power outlets may be available.

More effective camera placement will lend itself to a more effective surveillance

system. PoE enables flexible, more efficient network designs, simplifies and speeds

installation, and generally reduces costs across the board. PoE also facilitates

changing environments or temporary deployments.

PoE technology allows for centralized power management. With centralized power

management, the IP network is protected by uninterruptible power supplies with

battery back-up (UPS). If power goes down, the critical network and surveillance

infrastructure can stay online. Centrally managed power enables remote shutdown or

remote reset capabilities, saving the time and expense of dispatching a technician to a

camera location. With analog CCTV systems all distributed devices need UPS power

supplies adding complexity and costs to the overall system.

Wireless installations offer similar kinds of benefits. If running Ethernet cable is

undesirable, installing low cost 802.11 wireless access points and placing wireless

cameras anywhere within the cell of coverage is an option. The 54 Mbps 802.11g

standard is sufficient for many video surveillance applications. Current wireless

security standards, like WiFi Protected Access (WPA) offer robust authentication and

encryption for the wireless signal to prevent snooping and interception of the video

signal.

 

 Ease of Expansion and Scalability

IP Surveillance applications are also highly scalable. Cameras can be added one at a

time, whereas DVR analog systems may require increments of 8, 16 or 24 additional

cameras. As a company grows, the digital system keeps costs in check.

With Gigabit and 10 Gigabit Ethernet readily available, the IP network is scalable as

well. Several cameras can be supported on the same IP infrastructure. Typical

switches and routers available today simply segregate traffic for larger scale video

applications. With proper network design, installations with 200-300 cameras are

common, and some organizations are easily using more than 1000 cameras at a time.

Storage and server systems scale easily and cheaply, with no need for specialized

recording equipment or training. The IP protocol is familiar to network

administrators therefore they have the knowledge needed to deploy IP Surveillance

applications.

IP Surveillance Examples

IP Surveillance solutions cover a wide range of possible applications, including

security/safety, observation, and quality control monitoring. A typical example is remote

building surveillance where the interior or exterior of a building may be monitored safely

from a second secure building.

Examples of and requirements for IP Surveillance solutions can be identified across a

wide mix of vertical industries. All types of organizations, from government agencies

and educational institutions to research labs and retailers, can benefit from IP

Surveillance systems. Consider some of these possible uses:

Government – A large opportunity exists in the government sector. Homeland security,

installation protection (military, energy, infrastructure), and transportation security

measures require continuous, intelligent surveillance in large scales.

Education - Institutions need to protect both their assets and populations from crime,

theft, and vandalism.

Retail - Businesses need to protect employees, customers, premises, and inventory from

internal and external theft as well as from other criminal activity. Retailers want to

provide a safe environment for their patrons while also protecting themselves.

Financial - Banks need surveillance at branch offices, teller windows, and ATMs.

Transportation - Agencies need to monitor rapid transit stations, railways, highways and

airports.

A wide variety of businesses, research organizations and manufacturing facilities require

monitoring for productivity measures, workplace safety, and the protection of intellectual

property, logistics systems, and warehouse supply chain systems.

Implementing IP Surveillance

Several considerations come into play when implementing an IP Surveillance system.

The following points or options should be considered when implementing an IP

Surveillance application.

Network

A number of network variables dictate optimal network speeds, storage capacity and

server performance. Ideally, the network switches and routers should provide high

performance and offer a range of speeds from 100 Mbps to 10 Gbps. For high quality

feeds or large numbers of cameras, consider 100 Mbps attached cameras with backbone

network speeds of 1 Gigabit or higher. 10/100 Mbps networks can be used for

applications where high-resolution video quality is not as critical. To avoid choppy,

delayed data transfers traffic calculations should be made with respect to network

performance. Estimates of throughput and peak demand requirements that will be placed

on the network and how those demands may impact other network applications should be

considered. Examine how much other traffic is moving around the network at specific

times of the day. Consider switching infrastructures that implement Quality of Service

(QoS) mechanisms to provide the desired level of video quality to your IP Surveillance

application.

The 802.11g wireless standard offers less throughput, but it’s perfectly fine for certain

applications. With a dedicated network of wireless cameras, capturing high-resolution

images without taxing the network is possible. Performance depends on the resolutions

and frame rates selected for each camera. Security is also an issue with wireless

networks. WPA or WEP authentication and encryption are recommended.

Cameras

With PoE technology, camera placement can be made in the best locations, untethered

and independent from AC power outlets. This enables a centralized power management

strategy with UPS battery back-up availability for all cameras. The same UPS system that

delivers back-up power to servers and data center equipment backs up the cameras – it

can be managed from the same console.

Digital IP camera vendors sell a wide variety of indoor and outdoor cameras that perform

well in all kinds of environments. Enclosures with thermal barriers on certain models

protect the equipment from extreme weather. Others contain heater blowers for cold

temperature climates and waterproof seals to protect from water damage.

Camera capabilities will vary based on the application. The cameras come in video only,

audio/video and two-way audio with speaker attachments and built in microphone

options, as well. Some are stationary while other offer remote controlled pan, tilt and

zoom (both digital and optical). Another camera consideration is the lighting conditions.

Some cameras will be much better than others in low light conditions. Whereas most

cameras would provide no image at all in low light conditions, those with low light

sensitivity can still produce a picture.

 

Monitoring and Recording Stations

Monitoring stations provide multi-camera monitoring via either a hardware or software

interface. Multiple monitors or a single screen split into multiple frames can be

configured with IP camera management software.

Recording and playback options for setting sensitivity levels, motion trigger thresholds,

and screen area triggers are available. Surveillance applications should be analyzed to

determine the requirements for these types of advanced functionality.

Management and monitoring software solutions sold with digital IP systems include

automated snapshot, event, alarm and motion detection features. Check with your vendor

to determine whether these applications are available and if they come at additional costs.

D-Link provides the management and surveillance software free with its IP cameras,

unlike some other vendors.

Or contact us directly:

KEYWORDS: Tutorial, Overview, how, why, how to, LPR introduction, introduction to LPR, recognition systems tutorial, Automatic Number Plate Recognition, ANPR, NPR, LPR, License plate, License Plate Recognition, OCR, Car Number OCR, Vehicle Plate Reader, License Id Reader, Number Plate, Parking lot, Access Control, Traffic surveillance, Control system, License Plate Identification, Plate Recognition, America, Number Plate, Toll, Software, Algorithms, Asia, Numberplate Recognition, Europe, Detection, Automatic License, Law Enforcement, download, Remote Video Monitoring, Red Light, film, PC based, Traffic Camera, Automatic, Vehicle Recognition system, OCR, flow, car flow, municipality, city, License Plate Reader, ETC, Electronic Toll, plate reader, Traffic Law Enforcement, red light, parking, officer, police, Customs, security, car Park, gate, relay, car, truck, driver, safety, gate, ticketing, film, film processing, violations, officer, border, border patrol, demo, demo download, SeeCar, SeeLane, number plate recognition, registration, License Plate Identification Image Processing, vision based, camera, IR, illumination, SeeCarHead, Hi-Tech Solutions, htsol, Car Number OCR, Vehicle Plate Reader, License Id Reader, Number Plate, Parking lot, Access Control, Traffic surveillance, Control system, License Plate Identification, Plate Recognition, America, Number Plate, Toll, Software, Algorithms, Asia, Numberplate Recognition, Europe, Detection, Automatic License, Law Enforcement, download, Remote Video Monitoring, Red Light, film, PC based, Traffic Camera, Automatic, Vehicle Recognition system, OCR, License Plate Reader, ETC, Electronic Toll, plate reader, Traffic Law Enforcement, red light, parking, officer, police, Customs, security, car Park, gate, relay, car, truck, driver, safety, gate, ticketing, film, film processing, violations, officer, border, border patrol, demo, demo download, airport, airport parking, fraud, fraud prevention, SeeCar, SeeLane, ticket, ticket dispenser, number plate recognition, front, rear, registration, Automatic Vehicle Identification, AVI, Automatic car Identification, ACI, Automatic Vehicle Recognition, AVR, Automatic car Recognition, ocr,license plate recognition,license plate reader,license plate identification, hi-tech,license plate number, ocr software,tech solutions, hi tech,license plate id, number plate recognition,law enforcement,plate recognition, character recognition, lpr parking system, hi-tech solutions, parking, car license plate recognition, automatic vehicle identification, driver image, driver face, car body, security officer, guard, automatic guard, smart card, intelligence, Hi-Tech Solutions, htsol, Ariel Group, ariel-group, license plate reader, ocr, hi tech, license plate recognition, number plate recognition, tech solutions, license plate number, character recognition, license plate id, car recognition, plate recognition, hi-tech solutions, license plate identification, number plates, tech solution, automation, vehicle automation, revolution, hi-tech, license plate id, car license plate recognition, license plate reader, law enforcement automatic license plate identification, tech solutions, license plate registration, linux, license plate i.d., car license plate detection and recognition system, vehicle numberplate identification, demo america, demo USA, demo Europe, car license identification, ocr software, hi-tech, tech solutions, hi, zipped ocr, vehicle plate recognition, license plate reader, download ocr, business recognition products, free ocr software, free ocr, ocr vision systems, vehicle recognition, plate tech., ocr download, trialware and ocr, license plate identification, hitech, vehicle license plate reader, licenseplate recognition, ocr solutions, ocr software downloads, license plate search, automatic number plate recognition, best tech solutions, ocr downloads, what is the best ocr software, hi-tech solution, law enforcement, parking, automatic identification system, hi-tech, law -enforcement, parking lot security, automatic vehicle identification, license plate recognition, automatic vehicle identification, access control, traffic surveillance technology, law enforcement, car plate, car license research, license plate search, automatic parking, license plate identification, america demo download, parking, automatic registration plate identification, number plate identification, car plate, vehicle recognition, license plate recognition, license plate identification, plate reader, software ocr, plate recognition source code, license plates identification, seefilm, vehicle license plate identification, license plate identification, car surveillance system, automatic vehicle identification, optical character recognition, lpr parking system, optical license plate recognition, license plate identification, lpr parking system, license plate info, license plate identification, average speed, car flow, stolen cars, black list, ticket fraud, toll fraud, pass card, double security, fingerprint, finger print, automatic enforcement, license plate identification, optical plate recognition, character recognition, carplate, TCPIP, DDE, messages, DDE Messages, serial, RS232, license plate id, plate identification, license plate identification, id reader, advanced traffic managment system, hi tech solutions

This site has been visited times since 2/2/01.

CALL Barry on +27 31 764 3077  or   + 27 (0) 82-562-8225  or E-Mail NOW (infoAT I-Cube DOT co DOT za)  OR Contact one of our DISTRIBUTORS

I-Cube.   All rights reserved.  Revised: February 18, 2008 .