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News

Surveillance improves solar energy security

Milestone Systems : 14 December, 2015  (Application Story)
Outages of electricity supplies from an Italian solar energy power station have been reduced by 96 percent after installing improved security measures
Surveillance improves solar energy security

Losses and damages to Italy’s TerniEnergia photovoltaic (solar) power stations that can cause fall-outs in their energy supply, have been reduced by 96% after a Milestone video management software (VMS) security solution was implemented. The solution also ensures operation without unscheduled downtime, improving the power plants’ service levels.  
 
Photovoltaic power stations can span many square kilometers and are nearly impossible to secure by traditional means. Without an efficient surveillance system, thieves can enter the large and remotely located production facilities unseen. TerniEnergia had experienced several thefts at their power stations which resulted in losses from damage. For example, the thieves would cut energy cables or steal solar panels which led to increased expenses for TerniEnergia, who had to restore the property and pay penalties due to electrical service interruptions.
 
“Our Milestone solution showed its worth a few days after the project was finalized when there was an attempted theft at one of TerniEnergia’s photovoltaic power stations. The operators at our monitoring station were alerted immediately by the system and contacted the local police who arrested the thief in the middle of cutting energy cables. Without the Milestone solution I am not sure we would have caught the thief and especially not in the middle of the misdeed,” says Giuseppe Briotti, Security Administrator at iGreenPatrol, a private security institute owned by TerniEnergia.
 
During the first year in operation with Milestone XProtect software, 25 attempted thefts and damages to the solar power stations were avoided. As a result, the number of thefts and damage done to TerniEnergia’s photovoltaic power stations was reduced by 96 percent compared to previous years. The previous high number of thefts and damages to the plants created long operational recovery times which resulted in loss of energy production, and thus, loss of income - especially bad since most of the incidents happened during the summer: the time of year with the biggest potential for solar energy production. With the Milestone video management system in place, TerniaEnergia and their customers are now ensured continuity and stability in their operations.

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