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A9 Dualling Project video

In Scotland, the A9 Dualling Project from Perth to Inverness would create a dual carriageway to improve traffic flow. Time-lapse video would document the work for auditing purposes. The network video product manufacturer Axis and its partner Camera Control UK developed a solution for capturing 4K time-lapse imagery using renewable sources.

One of the main challenges was that the solution needed to be able to capture surveillance video in the Highlands with no communication networks or local power, while coping with weather extremes and construction logistics. With diesel generators disregarded due to the pollutants, and the challenges associated with trying to lay power cables over distance along a route that twists and turns, a clean and sustainable solution was required.

The highways project will see a ten mile stretch of the A9 widened. After winning a tender to document the project, local video production company, MB Productions Ltd, commissioned Camera Control UK. It in turn contacted Axis Communications. The resulting video would be example material for future projects.

Martin Naylor, Director of Camera Control UK, says: “We realised it had to be an off-grid solution to avoid using local power; a solution that could incorporate wireless communications and utilise renewable energy sources to be environmentally friendly and sustainable over the longer term.”

AXIS P1448-LE 4K short bullet cameras were chosen. The final system uses eight solar power packs, charged by a mix of wind turbine and solar PV panels. Eight towers with mounted cameras are employed at various points along the A9. Communications masts, installed to enable cloud connectivity, ensured that the Axis cameras, connected via the IoT, were able to deliver imagery. The firms say that the whole solution illustrates the possibilities for innovation when using the natural elements, having a virtually zero carbon footprint.

Captured video is relayed back to a central control location using a dedicated wireless network. The whole system can be remotely monitored to check status of operation. Remote management also enables the cameras to be fine-tuned for precision imagery of the work in progress, without the need to manually touch the cameras, or even to be on-site.

Martin Naylor says: “Axis really values innovation and is therefore an ideal partner, not only because the team takes the time to understand the challenges when trying to push the boundaries of what’s possible in surveillance, but also because their drive towards sustainable and ethical practices is an inspiration to other technology companies.”

And Matt Brown, Director, MBP, says: “We are now able to capture fantastic 4K imagery of the ongoing work on the A9. Camera Control UK has produced an entirely green solution; an incredible feat of engineering. The Axis cameras are in a completely different league, in terms of quality, to others we’ve seen. This project has been a great success.”

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