Abstract: Green Security


“Turn off the Lights, Turn on the Security”


Our desire to conserve energy has caused us to re-examine practices that were formed at a time when energy was both cheap and abundant.  The harm generated from wasting energy has become an economic as well as an environmental impact issue.  A major use of electrical energy is for lighting.  One of the most common uses of lighting is night time illumination for security systems.  Security experts defined light to be the enemy of darkness and the ally of safety.  Bad things happen when there is no light.  Evil exists under the cloak of darkness.  If you want safety, you must have light.  But, how true is this axiom?


Military Legacy


In the 1970’s US military planners recognized that an army deployed with “night vision” had a significant tactical advantage on the battlefield. The quote by Gerard Erasmus: "In the valley of the blind, the one-eyed man is king." should be updated to read, “An army with night vision will rule the battlefield”. As a result, no foe in the world today is capable of engaging the US armed forces due in part to the technical advancements of our night vision systems. In the early 90’s Infrared Technology was designated by the US Government as a “dual use” technology opening the door for commercial developments.  The US Government still controls the technology but commercial applications in aviation, medicine, vehicle systems, and now security, have been sanction and approved. 


Circa 2009


In today’s security market we are seeing the emergence of three new factors.  First, the cost of Infrared Cameras has become affordable.  Secondly, our once low cost electrical power is rapidly escalating and is projected to continue to increase.  And lastly, the unnecessary wasting of energy and the resulting environmental impact has become a national priority.


Commercial Car Lots (example)


There are more than 70,000 large cars lots in the USA.  These lots operate at night employing strong illumination. The lights consume greater than 500 K-Mega-Watt-Hours per day.  Approximately 40% of the power is illumination after the business has closed. This translates into millions of dollars per day and a large carbon footprint. 


Virtually all car lots are equipped with security cameras.  They require illumination at night.  Car theft rings have become very sophisticated.  They are targeting certain car models that will be dissembled, crated, and shipped to a foreign market usually within hours of the theft.  The car thief is not just stealing, he is fulfilling an order. When a car lot is lighted, the total time from entering, locating the car, and departing is less than 5 minutes on average for a professional thief. 


Darkness becomes our friend


With an Infrared Security system the scene is placed in total darkness.  The darkness slows down the actions of the thief. He is looking for a particular car. He has either “cased” the car lot earlier hoping the car has not been moved or he must examine all of the cars until he finds his target.  Once he locates the car, he will defeat the car’s built in security before departing the premises.


With an Infrared Security system the thief is identified as a threat as soon as he enters the lot.  This early alert combined with increasing the time the thief spends on site widens the window for a response team greatly increasing the chances for apprehension.


Infrared cameras enjoy a technology benefit over visual cameras because of their inherent stable electro-magnetic image. This stable signature makes positive unambiguous identification possible.  False alarms are minimized, if not eliminated. 




The conservation of electric power by itself is a strong motivating force to select an Infrared Security System.  The performance benefit is just icing on the cake.  


The segments of the physical security market that benefits the most are those portions of the market where electric power consumption is high.  Other applications besides car lots fitting this criterion are: Correctional Facilities, Perimeter control for Airports, and Government facilities. 


Inspired by the Kyoto Accord our corporation is dedicated to moving our ISS patent pending technology into the market place. To achieve a dramatic impact in energy savings we need many partners, associates, and end-users.  We envision a consortium comprised of commercial industry and the US government.  We would like to investigate “Carbon Credits” as a means to encourage end-users to switch over to Green Security.  We envision a clearing house approach, where the filing for and receiving of Carbon Credits would be handled for end-users by the consortium or a dedicated government agency.  In this way the incentive can pass seamlessly to the end-users with the paper work, verification, and distribution handled in a professional and efficient way.


Inquiries on this paper maybe directed to:


Gary E. Ball


Infrared Systems International


Tel: (310) 213-2143