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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Edge Video Processing

One of the biggest issues with distributed wireless video surveillance is bandwidth and scalability.

For the last 12 years, SentinelAVE has been developing scalable technology for Geo-spacial video data processing. Their flagship product is 3D Video Fusion, which I discussed in earlier blogs.

HauteSpot has been partnering with SentinelAVE to develop a new solution for in-vehicle mobile, nomadic, and remote location video. The idea is to create a system which records locally at full resolution from IP cameras that are attached to a microNVR. This video is evidence grade and provides full chain of evidence management including fragile digital watermarking for tamper proofing. At the same time streaming a highly bandwidth optimized stream to remote viewers for live situational awareness viewing.

SentinelAVE built a light version of their AVE server which is very efficient and runs extremely well on both the current microNVR v1 and prototype versions of the new microNVR version 2. The light version of AVE server can record and store locally on the microNVR host from up to 8 IP cameras, it can provide local display in a simple user interface, it can gather location, sensor, alarm, access control, SCADA, OPC and other related data, and is a good quality Video Management Server. More important, it can transmit in real time live or recorded streams using the SentinelAVE patent pending bandwidth optimized video protocol. Video can then be displayed in either a full Sentinel 3D or a lite 2D client.

How optimized is this stream? Last week we were back East at a customer site. We were connected using a tenuous 4G wireless connection. Download speed was fluctuating between 1 and 5 Mbps. We were displaying 5 cameras each in full VGA resolution using less than 2Mbps. When the network speed degraded to less than 2Mbps, we were still receiving images with slightly lower quality. In fact, usable video could be received down to less than 200kbps. Remember that we were recording all of the cameras at full frame rate and full resolution at the remote server end, so no evidence was lost.

We can capture GPS position, camera azimuth, camera tilt and camera velocity. This allows us to know exactly where the video is in 3 dimensional space, what it is looking at and where it is headed. Using this information, SentinelAVE can calibrate the image in real time to their 3D model background, allowing for  the model and the live video to be dynamically combined. Cameras can now roam the Earth and remote viewers will always have a context in which to comprehend the camera surroundings.

So how can this be used? For police, public safety, commercial central station monitoring and other mobile users, the microNVR with AVE is a low power, ultra compact, fully managed edge video processing platform that records and transmits over whatever available wireless network is available. Plus, you can display the video locally in the vehicle over 802.11 on any smartphone, PDA, tablet computer or laptop.

Put this solution on a bus or train and you have a location of the vehicle, the views of each camera inside and outside the vehicle, and a full context in which to view the video from the vehicle. You can also overlay data such as OMB 2 diagnostics, location, occupancy, etc. For school buses we can add RFID or badge readers, so at any time you can retrieve on screen the full passenger manifest of the bus. You can map entry and exit events of passengers to video. And you can relate surrounding buildings, streets, etc to video of a passenger as they leave or board the bus.

For dispatchers, incident commanders, central station monitoring stations the SentinelAVE 3D client presents camera displays in a the model so that they can see surrounding cameras, tie the cameras on the vehicle to cameras on poles near by. They can look ahead at traffic conditions. They can even control traffic signals, gates, valves, relays and other devices remotely.

Other solutions I have seen try to take video events and create text reports and alarms that can be combined with access control reports. SentinelAVE takes access control, alarms, SCADA and OPC and makes is visual, putting it right into the video display.

Look for product announcements soon regarding the new microNVR with SentinelAVE Lite Server.

1 comment:

  1. This is great stuff Bob. I can't wait to start running some of our edge-archiver-client tests in a few months as well.