Alarm and Sensor Technologies

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Overview of Alarm Technologies

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The point of physical security measures is to provide a complete triangle of Deterrence, Detection, and Delay, ultimately leading to Response from the site personnel, police, etc.

Alarm circuits and sensors are the "detection" portion of this cycle. The typical alarm system includes overlapping sensors to check for door/open closed status, glass breakage, motion, and more. These sensors are electrically "supervised" by a microcontroller and monitored constantly for changes in state.

A basic alarm circuit

Commercial alarm systems are typically wired up as follows:

  • One or more sensors are placed in series to form a "loop." Each loop forms a sensor zone.
  • Sensor zones are always wired up as "normally closed"
  • Each zone includes a resistor in the middle of each loop, a resistor at the end of each sensor loop, and the ability to check voltage or resistance at the alarm panel. circuits.

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  • Passive Infrared (PIR)

This type of sensor is used to protect inside and outside spaces by watching for changes in radiated IR.