11 December 2012

UK’s largest port operator turns to Wavesight’s wireless technology to reduce costs and increase security.

Wavesight’s outdoor wireless CCTV transmission has been selected by Associated British Ports and deployed at Grimsby and Immingham docks, one of the UK’s biggest car import terminals. Utilising their existing hardware, transmitting high-bandwidth CCTV images and generally leveraging a more powerful and cost-effective system from their existing network infrastructure was the task assigned to systems integrator Global Vision CCTV and Wavesight’s own network design team.


Associated British Ports (ABP) needed a high-definition megapixel video surveillance system capable of monitoring their entire port operation. This encompassed everything from general port security to employee safety and productivity – all monitored from a central station. The solution specified was an Avigilon HD Surveillance system, which was versatile and flexible enough to support hardware from other CCTV vendors – including analogue cameras – while utilising ABP’s existing infrastructure to achieve a more cost-effective and powerful solution.

The solution

ABP installed a range of HD megapixel Avigilon cameras at the port of Grimsby. These cameras capture everything from vehicle entry and exit movements to monitoring the lock gates at the port, which open and close to allow ships to pass. The cameras also ensure that there are no obstructions to prevent the lock gates from opening and closing when required. Analogue video encoders were used to integrate a new analogue PTZ system and existing analogue cameras into their new HD surveillance system. The majority of cameras are connected through the fibre network back to the marine control room where the system is monitored in real-time. To achieve a reliable solution, Global Vision CCTV chose Wavesight to supply the wireless infrastructure, creating a cost-effective extension to the existing network and allowing new camera locations to be installed at an affordable price, while at the same time linking all of the network video recorders (NVRs).

A combination of WaveSPRINTs, WaveFLOWs and WaveMAXs was chosen by Global Vision CCTV to transmit images back to the central control room. The systems integrator used Grimsby Dock Tower, a hydraulic accumulator tower and famous maritime landmark in Grimsby, as a relay point. At a height of over 200 feet, the tower provided perfect line of sight back to the control room and made the installation faster and less expensive. A WaveMAX standalone wireless bridge was positioned on the side of the tower and effectively acts as a backhaul system allowing multiple streams of high-bandwidth video to be transmitted easily back to the control room.

Built in 1917 and with little or no cable infrastructure, Grimsby docks presented the systems integrator with no option other than to use a combination of fixed fibre and high-performance wireless Ethernet bridges to transmit the video images back to the control room. The hard-dig cost and disruption this would have caused, coupled with the expense of leasing the fibre lines to the port would have been extremely costly, resulting in the entire upgrade running massively over budget.

Another considerable cost-saving for ABP was the fact that this new network-based surveillance system meant that all NVRs could be connected wirelessly and accessed from both ports – a distance of seven miles. Interestingly, the security system at Associated British Ports was originally in the hands of the engineering department, but is now managed by the IT department. This new IT knowledge and logic, coupled with an IP surveillance solution, was instrumental in the success of the project and now means that all four sister ports in the Humber region can be monitored from one central location at Grimsby over a wide area network.

All Wavesight wireless bridges are ruggedised to exceed IP65 and feature tough all-weather capability – ideal for coastal environments and an important factor that Global Vision CCTV needed to bear in mind when specifying the wireless equipment.

Speaking about the wireless elements of the installation, Dan Woods, project manager at Global Vision CCTV, commented, “Wireless was the only option for us to use at Grimsby Port due to the massive cost of installing and leasing fixed-line fibre. The client was working to a tight budget, so this made the installation both faster and more cost-effective.”

Grimsby and Immingham Port