Future Fibre Technologies (FFT), a leader in the development, manufacturing and installation of fibre-optic intrusion detection systems, is pleased to announce the launch of a new world-class perimeter protection system.

Secure Zone™ is a mid-range derivative of FFT’s proven flagship product Secure Fence™ and is designed to fill a need in the market for a highly reliable yet cost-effective zone-based intrusion detection solution. Secure Zone, which provides ideal perimeter protection for smaller airports, will be launched officially at IFSEC in May.

The new product is equipped with FFT’s patented ARaD technology to overcome the traditional problems of nuisance alarms that are so common with current solutions. The technology uses signature recognition and advanced learning algorithms to “know” the difference between an environmental nuisance alarm and an attempted intrusion.

Alec Owen, international client manager at FFT, said the company had developed Secure Zone following requests from customers. He said: “Secure Zone has been developed to offer customers the best possible protection at the lowest possible cost of ownership. The system is configured so there are 16 independent hardware zones, each up to 500m in a single unit. Therefore installation of the system is considerably easier, allowing us to deliver superior value-for-money. This makes Secure Zone the ideal perimeter security solution for smaller airports.”

The system can be configured to allow up to 4km insensitive lead-in, with zone lengths of up to 500m, for a workable solution and maximum value for money. A further benefit is the location of the controller in a security post or building, rather than on the fence line.

Mr Owen said his company expected strong demand from those responsible for protecting smaller airports, military bases and government facilities, as well as energy infrastructure facilities such as oil refineries, petrochemical plants and power plants.

Simple to use, Secure Zone has the ability to interface and activate CCTV systems, lighting, gates and e-mail plus a broad range of external devices and systems.

The area or zone in which an alarm is triggered is instantly displayed, and the event is automatically logged into a secure database. An alarm signal is then sent via dry contacts to a high-level command and control system, CCTV camera system or other external monitoring.

The low-cost fibre-optic sensor cable is easily attached to a fence to detect intrusion attempts. The system can be configured so if the cable is cut in one zone, the remaining 15 zones continue to operate normally.

Secure Zone requires no electronics or power in the field and is easy and economical to install or expand. There is no field maintenance and the fibre-optic cable is unaffected by RFI, EMI, lightning or storms.

Its fibre-optic connections can be all mechanical, so no special fibre-optic skills are required, making installation even easier for systems integrators.

Like all FFT products, the Secure Zone detection solution has an impressive “green” footprint. Secure Fence, Secure Pipe™, Secure Link™ and Secure Zone use fibre-optic elements on the field, which incorporate passive field components and require no remedial maintenance. They also have a rated life of more than 15 years.

This longer life-cycle, evidenced by a manufacturer warranty that is double the industry norm, brings down the total cost of ownership for the customer and is better for the environment.

The unique design of FFT products ensures extremely low energy use. At their core they work via an optical system, which sends a light signal down the entire length of the fibre-optic path and analyses the behaviour of the light to detect intrusions. This design is highly energy efficient since no distributed electricity is required to power each zone.

Dr Jim Katsifolis, chief technology officer at FFT, said:
“The newly launched 16-channel Secure Zone system has a total power consumption of only 120W or roughly 7.5W per channel.”

In addition FFT products contain components that comply with restriction of hazardous substances (RoHS) directives, which is the EU directive 2002/95/EC for waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). The purpose of these directives is the prevention, recovery and safe disposal of waste and the promotion of equipment design that facilitates the repair, dismantling, reuse and recycling of equipment.

Since 1994 FFT has become the technology of choice for intrusion detection applications, including perimeters, walls, fences, networks and buried pipelines.

Mr Owen said FFT was committed to an extensive and ongoing research and development programme to ensure it was well-placed to respond to customers’ needs.

He said: “We are focused on not only enhancing the performance of our existing intrusion detection products but on developing new products with the usability, versatility and capabilities to match evolving market demands. The launch of Secure Zone is testament to our commitment to developing systems that continue to meet real-world customer needs.”

The company has experienced significant growth over recent years as the market has started to understand the unique capabilities of FFT’s next generation fibre optic sensing technologies.

The company’s products are seen globally as the technology of choice for perimeter applications, pipeline monitoring and communications/data network security, with hundreds of systems and millions of metres of intrusion detection being deployed globally.