May. 19, 2010

IP Cameras for a Safe Harbor

IP Cameras Secure the Largest Marina on the Chesapeake Bay

Whenever expensive items are involved, security is always a major concern. If you‘ve fulfilled a childhood dream of owning your own large boat, you would prefer to keep it safe from theft and vandalism, even when you‘re not there to keep an eye on it yourself. Herrington Harbour North Marina in Maryland had Basler IP cameras installed to protect their grounds and everything on them.

The two Herrington Harbour Marinas - Herrington Harbour North and Herrington Harbour South - were established in 1978 from what was formerly known as the Rose Haven Yacht Club. With their 1,200 boat slips, the two resorts form the largest marina on the Maryland shore of the Chesapeake Bay. These eco-lifestyle marina resorts provide the closest deepwater access to the bay from the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Herrington Harbour North is located at the former Forces of Nature Harbour in Deale and can accommodate up to 1,500 boats on land.

With millions of dollars worth of boats on the marina property, Herrington Harbour North needed a secure, reliable, and durable video surveillance solution for crime prevention. One of the main requirements for the surveillance cameras was that they should provide absolutely clear images so that people‘s faces and the license plates of cars driving through the parking lots could be recognized - both during the day and at night. Another prerequisite was the storage of video footage for six months. With these demanding requirements concerning image quality defined, a comparison of analog and digital cameras proved that a digital surveillance camera system was the only logical choice.

Smart Filter
After some disappointing experiences with a competitor's camera, Herrington Harbour North decided to use nine Basler BIP-1300c-dn cameras because they offer excellent image quality and true day/night capability. These cameras are equipped with an automatically retractable IR-cut filter. This means that they use a mechanism which places an IR-cut filter in front of the sensor in day mode and removes the filter in night mode. The retractable filter allows the camera to properly represent colors using the visible light available during the daytime and to produce high quality black and white images when there is only infrared light available at night.

These characteristics made the Basler BIP-1300c-dn ideal for surveillance of the large marina area, even with minimal lighting.

With the camera‘s megapixel resolution, image details such as faces and license plates can easily be distinguished. In case a crime such as property damage is committed, this wealth of detail facilitates identification of the criminals. In addition, the cameras have a built in motion detection feature. When motion is detected, an alarm can be issued to the system operator via email, FTP, HTTP, or an electrical output signal. An individual „alarm buffer" can be enabled on each of the video streams transmitted by the camera, and each buffer can store several seconds of video. An alarm buffer can be set up so that images are captured and stored both a few seconds before and a few seconds after an alarm event is detected. This means that an operator can play back the buffer and easily see what triggered an alarm event.

Camera installation was completed by Surveillance Secure, a security services provider based in Rockville, Maryland. The Basler IP cameras were placed in protective outdoor housings to protect them from adverse weather conditions, dust, and moisture. Existing poles at Herrington Harbour North were used to install the cameras and to supply them with power. A number of transmitters and receivers were installed to transmit the images from the cameras back to the marina office.

Compact Archive
Video footage from all of the cameras installed at the site must be stored for a period of six months, and this requirement results in a large amount of stored video data. To lower storage costs as well as bandwidth consumption, the Basler BIP-1300c-dn allows multiple streaming using several MJPEG streams and an MPEG-4 or an H.264 stream at the same time. This means that several streams can be set up for different purposes. For example, one stream could be set with a low image size for the operator to view, and a second stream could be set for the maximum image size and only recorded by the network video recorder (NVR) if motion is detected. On each stream, the user can also adjust the output scaling, frame rate scaling, AOI, and encoder mode to reduce the amount of bandwidth required by the camera.

With the new Basler IP cameras installed, boat owners at the Herrington Harbour North marina have peace of mind. They can rest assured that their property is protected at all times and that they will always have a safe harbor to return to.


Basler Vision Technologies
An der Strusbek 60-62
22926 Ahrensburg
Phone: +49 4102 463 0
Telefax: +49 4102 463 109

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