Thermal cameras are often used in early risk detection and are also useful in occupational medicine. For example, the cameras are able to detect a noticeable deviation in people’s body temperature – such as a slight fever in Covid-19. Companies use them to control the Prometheus entry turnstile, which automatically triggers an alarm when someone is sick.
The challenge: Protecting personnel from infection with Sars-CoV-2
Covid-19, or infection with Sars-CoV-2, shows only mild symptoms in some cases, causing sick people to mistake it for the common cold. The sense of duty then often drives them to their workplace, although in Corona times the rule should be: Stay at home even if there are the slightest symptoms of illness.
A simple solution that can be implemented quickly is to measure the body temperature of each employee when they enter the premises. But this is difficult to do in practice. From the point of view of those responsible in large companies, it is important to take appropriate measures to protect everyone present in the company from infection.
An efficient method for this, which is also suitable for large crowds, was recently developed and introduced to the market by TTS Automation in cooperation with WAGO Kontakttechnik.
The solution: Automatic body temperature control for personnel gates
TTS Automation uses non-contact temperature measurement with an anomaly detection camera in its products. The basic principle can be very easily adapted to the detection of human body temperature.
The Prometheus personnel gate uses this technology for access control at electric turnstiles or gates, for example. But for this to work, the camera must not only determine thermal images, but also send the data to the cloud. There, they are further processed, for example, to send alarm messages to responsible parties.
The key element for this: The “Digital Plant Gateway” from WAGO. It is an IoT gateway that establishes a connection to the Industrial IoT (Internet of Things) for machines and plants. The WAGO controller enables the system to communicate directly with the camera electronics. Thermal anomaly detection reliably detects elevated skin surface temperatures – indoors and outdoors and regardless of wind, ambient temperature or other influences.
When the body temperature of the person in front of the camera is within the normal range, the opening mechanisms are automatically triggered. In the process, the data is also sent to the cloud to document the data and inform responsible parties as needed.
The result: Easy detection of diseased persons
The system is now used in many different areas, such as chemical parks, hospitals, construction site monitoring and large food processors. Although the gate works fully automatically, the person in front of it is not left alone: The warning message reaches responsible employees, who re-measure manually and talk to the employee.
The Prometheus gate is being further developed because there are also useful applications during normal flu waves or the annual cold season. The idea: The cloud evaluates anonymous measured values and compares them with weather data and illness levels. In this way, operators can make statements about expected sick leave and adjust their personnel planning before the actual wave of sick leave arrives.