OPTEX: Intrusion detection, security sensors, security lighting

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OPTEX is a leading manufacturer of high performance sensing technologies and supplies detection systems and products to professional security installers and distributers.

Established in Japan in 1979 the company has developed the world’s first automatic door sensors the following year, in 1980.  OPTEX (Europe) was founded in 1991, as a subsidiary of OPTEX Japan, and now has its headquarters at the Maidenhead office in the UK with regional offices in the Netherlands, France, Dubai and Poland.

On 1 January 2017, the company transitioned to a new organisational structure with OPTEX Group CO Ltd as a holding company. Its subsidiaries include FIBE SENSYS INC (an American company) which it acquired in 2010 and Raytec Ltd (who make supplemental lighting for CCTV) in 2012.

Sensing solutions

OPTEX’s main business is composed of “Sensing Solutions” products which includes security-related and automatic-related products, factory automation (sensors for industrial machines) and LED lighting devices and systems for image processing.

The company says it has adopted a strong customer-oriented strategy and their business model includes close contact with customers and the regional market place. The company sees this role in the broadest possible terms with the aim of developing sensing technologies that provide increased safety, security and comfort to a wide range of applications

OPTEX is now concentrating its efforts on high-end security systems and has seen significant increases in profit in recent years. The company holds the top 40% of the global market in outdoor sensors and top 30% of the market in automatic door sensors.  In 2014, the company was selected as one of the “Global Niche Top Companies Selection 100” organised by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in Japan.

Defining perimeters

The company’s laser sensors provide highly customisable virtual walls and ceilings which can be used to protect a perimeter line, fence and other specific or restricted areas. In the case of an airport, this might include entrances to hangers, gates and other restricted areas such as baggage halls.

One of the company’s flagship products in this area is the CPNI-approved fibre optic fence detection system, Fiber Sensys FD-322 series, which can detect intruders climbing or cutting through a fence. The system was showcased at IFSEC International in London in 2017 along with the OPTEX Redscan RLS-3060 which can create a further layer of security around a perimeter fence to warn if anyone or any vehicle is approaching the fence.

It is integrated with the GEMOS PSIM platform which can trigger video surveillance drones to fly to the point of intrusion and send a live video stream to the control centre. The “intrusion” can then be tracked on site maps to enable operators to respond to the threat as quickly and accurately as possible.

Tailgating

Tailgating, where an authorised person is followed by an unauthorised person often into a restricted area, is a widespread problem and can cost companies millions of dollars in asset and intellectual property loss along with a risk to employee safety. A recent survey by UK security manufacturers Boom Edam found that more than 70% of respondents to their survey said they believed they were currently vulnerable to a security breach from tailgating.

OPTEX’s Accurance3D is a tailgating and piggybacking detection system which is designed to combat the problem by automatically detecting unauthorised individuals attempting to gain entry to controlled areas. The sensors use “time-of-flight” technology, and enable a clear mapping of a scene in 3D with height-colour-coordinated images being able to recognise shapes easily.

Depending on specific system requirements, Accurance 3D will instruct the access control mechanism to trigger an alarm or keep the door closed until the unauthorised individual has left, or in a reversing door case reverse the door forcing the individual to exist. The “time-of-flight” technology used by the system is unaffected by any lighting conditions.

Outdoor sensors

For commercial and residential security, OPTEX has also developed and manufactured wireless outdoor sensors including its VX Shield Series which was also demonstrated at IFSEC last year. The company says that it is suited to Internet of Things (IOT) applications, sending alarms and other data via the cloud to a smartphone or to a remote monitoring station.


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