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Metro Security develops new temperature module for analytics solution

22 April 2020

VITAL HEALTH and Safety-focused personal protection against the Coronavirus (COVID-19) for a wide range of NHS staff, key workers and other employees looking after critical commercial, industrial and public sector facilities has been developed by Metro Security.

The Essex-based NSI Gold-certified fire and security solutions provider has reacted to the global pandemic by developing an innovative new module for its 2019 Queen’s Award-winning M.A.R.S analytics solution. The new temperature monitoring system provides immediately available, easy-to-install and effective detection of arriving employees, contractors and visitors at the entrance point to any facility.

In practice, on-site staff can monitor anyone arriving with a temperature that's higher than normal, using either a local display screen and/or a mobile app for their smart phone, tablet or laptop. Up to 20 incoming individuals can be screened on a simultaneous basis.

In addition to Metro Security’s existing facial recognition techniques, the M.A.R.S temperature monitoring system can check each arriving person using face detection thermal software linked to skin temperature. This innovative and configurable technology can then raise an alarm if a given individual's temperature meets a pre-assigned, abnormal level – a key symptom indicator for COVID-19 and other conditions including influenza.

These two facial recognition and thermal temperature systems can be deployed either stand-alone or in conjunction according to end user requirements. For instance, health facilities, public buildings and commercial establishments may only wish to monitor the temperature of those arriving infrequently at their sites and set the temperature alarm threshold at a nominal point. The triggering of an alarm above this temperature level then provides on-site personnel with the option to take preventive action, as required, before an individual moves beyond this important entry point.

Temperature ‘profiling’

Facilities such as offices, warehouses and distribution operations, where staff regularly come and go, can combine the two technologies to both identify each person individually (using facial recognition) and measure/match their daily temperature against previously taken readings. This could warn of an elevated facial temperature compared with previous days which, even though it’s still within a safe range, may indicate a developing condition. This offers the potential to detect Coronavirus symptoms even earlier and help save more lives.

Thermal temperature screening of up to 20 people at once can be carried out, with an accuracy of ± 0.3 degrees C, ensuring no ‘false positive’ alerts are triggered.

“Public and private sector organisations around the country need to continue their operations, while simultaneously protecting both their own key workers and others potentially exposed to the Coronavirus,” asserted Metro Security’s managing director Trevor Wallace. “In the longer term, as COVID-19 testing measures are rolled out and immunity can be demonstrated, businesses will gradually begin to be up-and-running once again. At that stage, the M.A.R.S temperature monitoring system will have a continued and important use, as it can carry on detecting and warning of those potentially affected by not only Coronavirus, but also other health-related conditions such as influenza. In this way, it will also provide vital protection against any secondary Coronavirus outbreaks.”

How it works

The system’s elements consist of proven and reliable facial recognition software that works in conjunction with megapixel CCTV surveillance cameras. These cameras can be quickly deployed and configured to suit varying site entry arrangements.

Metro Security’s new temperature monitoring technology is interfaced with configurable alarms to provide real-time alerts for immediate on-site response. The system can also be linked to access control equipment such as turnstiles and door entry locks (eg to automatically close access points if a body temperature alarm is activated and prevent ingress to the site while checks are carried out).