CIAS, the Multi Tech Choice to protect Critical Infrastructures’ Perimeter

06.12.2022 - A2A, the most important Italian utilities manager, chooses CIAS for the perimeter protection of its critical infrastructures.

In Italy the A2A group, 12 billion in revenues and 13,200 employees, manages many crucial public utilities, such as energy generation, sale and distribution, district heating, waste collection and recycling, electric mobility and smart services for cities, public lighting and water supply on national level.

Over the past 4 years, the close collaboration between CIAS and A2A Smart City, the technological division of the group dedicated to security, which today manages 3,000+ public and private cameras, 4,100 km of optical fiber, 4,000+ sensors, has made it possible to develop perimeter protection projects with the aim of safeguarding people, corporate assets, and ensure continuity of service for all its users.

The protected sites are critical infrastructures of national importance such as hydroelectric and gas generation plants, transformation stations, recycling stations and waste-to-energy plants scattered throughout the territory.

During project design phase, sensitive sites went through a careful risk assessment, to identify the correct security grade - 3 or 4 according to EN50131 - that any technology applied along their perimeter must comply with. The complete range of CIAS solutions makes it possible to satisfy the protection of complex and articulated perimeters by combining a mix of technologies, e.g. linear microwave barriers, MEMS sensors systems for fences and FSK radar device. All systems are interconnected with fiber optic technology and integrated to IP cameras for a complete supervision of the alarms generated.

The most important challenge was to guarantee the ROI (Return On Investment) based on the technological amortization of at least 10 years of service - since design phase. Extremely robust technologies were therefore adopted, all built in Italy at the CIAS factory. A technical trick that will surely guarantee an even longer life to the SIOUX PRO2 fence solution was to lay all the cables and MEMS sensors in strong metal tubes and TAZ boxes to prevent any voluntary or involuntary damage.

It is estimated that more than 10 km have been protected with CIAS PIDS between fences, walls, and supply pipes. Those successful projects with A2A also put a definitive end to the doubt that such sophisticated electronic technologies, such as MEMS and microwave; could work near electrical conduits up to 150kV.

The close collaboration continues to complete the integration part. All CIAS digital devices can provide alarm signals in 3 modes: dry contacts, RS-485, and IP - granting the security of alarm data, encrypted with AES128 and compliant to IEEE802.1X cyber security protocol. From this level it is ensured that the supervision PSIM platform has the maximum degree of security and can deal with any intrusive attacks.

As a next step, this collaboration will continue to introduce also new technologies such as Synapses multi-sensor system, a self-adaptive system based on artificial intelligence, which by correlating the RTSP video stream of the cameras already installed on the sites with the intrusion sensors, adjusts their sensitivity thresholds of detection. The result is outstandingly improved POD (Probability of Detection) and reduced NAR (improper alarms). Synapses just won the Detektor International Awards in Stockholm as “Best Product 2022” in the category Alarm&Detection.


CIAS Elettronica Srl

Via Durando 38
20158 Milano

+39 023767161