January 13, 2020
Effective access control design is a real art. Without it, the installed access system will forever be problematic and you will be plagued by an unhappy client or user. Poorly designed systems require constant maintenance and often break-down leading to security vulnerabilities at a site.
After the security survey has been conducted and the appropriate mitigation measures chosen by the consultant and/or client, the access control design process starts. The following is a helpful guide of items to be taken into consideration at the design stage of the access control project or installation:
Nothing works better than simulating the day to day operation of the access control system prior to the project or actual installation.
Access/Control credentials exist in many formats. These include fingerprint biometric or facial recognition templates, wireless keyfobs, proximity RFID tag/cards, numberplate recognition camera templates, long-range RFID tags, one-time-pins and even new generation QR code access credentials.
The most important item to consider is to prepare the access control door and/or door frame for the lock prior to installation.
An item which is often forgotten in many projects is the humble door closer which is a valuable item to complete any access control door installation.
Door locks fitted at incorrect heights lead to door buckling and maintenance issues.
In many installations, access control cabling is accessible from the unsafe side of the door. This is a major security vulnerability.
Ensure Readers are installed at the correct height and distance away from the user.
With many access control installations, no consideration is given in terms of planning for pedestrians to gain access into or out of the site. Often the overriding consideration goes to vehicle access.
Long cable runs cause voltage drops over distance. This can be problematic when equipment requires a certain voltage and it doesn’t receive it.
Access control systems should always be connected to dedicated power circuits and/or UPS power circuits.
Cable reticulation design is an essential component to any access control design.
Most modern access control installations will require some interfacing to a life safety system such as a fire detection system. This is in order to accommodate a safe exit for the tenants and/or visitors at a site in the event of an emergency such as a fire.
A very common issue in the security industry, this cannot be completely eradicated but there are some measures which can be implemented to reduce this.
A properly designed access system will lead to a successful project which should be able to be delivered on budget and on time by the access/control integrator. It should also provide the developer, client or end-user with a reliable system that would require minimal maintenance moving forward.
Below is a summary list of the topics already discussed in the article above.