Newly established company Fiber Guard has received its first South African order for its fibre optic based perimeter monitoring system to protect copper cables, and is in talks with other government entities such as SA National Parks.
Fiber Guard is the local agent for the system created by US-based company Optellios, which has specialised in perimeter control for over 15 years and has been awarded major border protection contracts in the United States and China, amongst other places.
Fiber Guard’s core technology uses fibre optic cables to detect disturbances in things like fences, buildings and pipelines. The fibre optic cable can detect cuts and vibrations, allowing it to distinguish between animals, humans and other disruptors and its sensitivity can be adjusted to eliminate false alarms.
Fiber Guard’s Rudi Visser told defenceWeb that his company offers a unique product as it gives the exact GPS position of a breach and can be integrated with unmanned aerial vehicles, cameras and other devices. Fiber Guard can detect multiple simultaneous disturbances and can be installed over any length of perimeter.
Fiber Guard was launched in South Africa in February this year with an initial focus on South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. Tshwane municipality became the first local customer for the system and is installing Fiber Guard on 14 different sites around Pretoria to protect nearly 50 kilometres of copper cables worth almost R25 million. Visser said there are another 250 potential sites that need protection.
Visser is also in discussions with South African National Parks (SANParks) to prevent poaching. The system would be tweaked to distinguish between humans and animals.
At the moment, Fiber Guard is just looking at serving state entities, such as the South African National Defence Force, SANParks, Telkom etc. as well as banks. Visser said he was 100% positive that South Africa will look at Fiber Guard for border control, as it is more affordable than manually patrolling the borders with vehicles and soldiers. Visser is also talking to companies that destroy contraband goods, as they are susceptible to theft.
Fiber Guard is also pursuing defence development sites such as places where explosives and other weapons are manufactured and developed.
In the future Fiber Guard will look at protecting things like oil, water and gas lines. Visser said that the product was not specifically designed for small applications and that commercial business would be pursued later.
To meet different requirements, Fiber Guard is available in a variety of different formats, from basic fence protection to wall, ground, building, pipeline and infrastructure monitoring systems. For instance, the FiberGuard FP3100-X is designed to detect and report intruders attempting to scale or breach masonry walls while the FiberGuard FP2100-X in-ground intrusion detection system uses in-ground fibre optic cable or co-axial cable to detect humans and vehicles crossing the sensor area.