News Briefs August 2013

Secura Key Launches NOVA.16 AC Panel

Secura Key’s new NOVA.16 (Model SK-MRCP) multi-reader access control panel, based on the powerful ARM Cortex M3, 32-bit RISC processor, provides a major technology upgrade to Secura Key’s legacy SK-NET™ system. 

The NOVA.16 connects to the local area network, and it also connects to a high speed, RS485 peripheral network consisting of up to 16 single-door Smart Readers, each containing all of the inputs and outputs to control and monitor a single door.

This combination of a control panel and Smart Readers is far more cost-effective than the traditional two-reader or four-reader control panel, or even the newer edge devices.  It eliminates the labor and cost of cable home runs, and multiple control panel installations. This system architecture is similar to high-end system panels, but it is an entirely new topology for the one- to 16-door market.

With NOVA.16, expansion is easy and inexpensive: to add individual doors, just connect additional Smart Readers and make all door connections at the reader. To go beyond 16 doors, additional NOVA.16s can be added to the network or be daisy chained using RS485.

NOVA.16 reduces the number of control panels required for multi-door systems, which is a critical issue for IT, Electrical and Utility Rooms, where space for security electronics is at a premium.

NOVA.16 not only communicates with Smart Readers, which are available in contactless or proximity technologies, but it also communicates with the SK-WIO-1 Single Door Wiegand Interface.  The SK-WIO-1 allows any Wiegand device to be connected to NOVA.16, including keypad readers, biometric readers, long range readers, and non-Secura Key card readers.

The NOVA.16’s RS-485 communications lines are hardened with gas discharge tube surge suppression. The NOVA.16 boasts a 3-Amp heavy-duty power supply with power line noise immunity, and it continually monitors backup battery status. Communications speeds and transaction storage capacity have more than doubled over previous controller models.  The ARM platform will enable future feature enhancements and system upgrades. 

NOVA.16 can be combined with Secura Key legacy two-door control panels on the same system, since they use the same programming conventions and user interface.

More Information:


Detex Tailgate Detection System Securest Healthcare Facility

Detex Corporation helps healthcare facilities control entry of unauthorized people trying to slip in behind employees who use card readers or keypads. The AT5200 Tailgate Detection System uses infrared sensor beams to detect followers, triggering an annunciated alarm.

As with many Detex high-security applications, the AT5200 System features a range of hardware designed for specific requirements. Healthcare customers can select the exact combinations of components that suit their particular applications and know that the components will integrate easily with each other and function well as a system.

Compatible with most card reader technologies, the Tailgate Detection System is easy to retrofit and has an integrated door-prop alarm for extra security. Access Control EasyKits® make installation easy.

“This system is ideal for departments where authorized personnel are the only ones allowed in the area,” said Ken Kuehler, national accounts manager at Detex. “Pharmacies, birthing centers, surgical suites – any place that strangers shouldn’t go is protected with a combination of Tailgate Detection System hardware and Restricted Access System hardware.”

To learn more about the Detex Tailgate Detection System, e-mail or visit


Potter Electric Secures Polk County Courthouse

The Polk County Courthouse in Dallas, Ore., desperately needed a fire alarm and fire sprinkler system overhaul to ensure the safety of their property and people. The existing four story building built in 1899 received a three story annex addition in 1964 and the Polk County Jail Building in 1999. The 69,000-square-foot property houses approximately 175 employees.

With a growing facility and a rapidly increasing employee base, the zone monitoring associated with the courthouse’s conventional fire alarm system proved outdated and insufficient.

This warranted the installation of an analog addressable system. The reliability,  pinpoint accuracy, and 24/7 on-site monitoring of an addressable system provided greater awareness and system functionality.

AllSafe Fire and Security was the contractor for the project. The remodeling also included five preaction fire sprinkler systems in critical areas. A central computer server room and a file storage room containing indispensable court documents were part of the preaction fire sprinkler system additions.

Potter’s P400R Analog Addressable Releasing Panel and the PSN-1000(E) Power Expander were used as a viable, cost-effective solution. The Potter panel and addressable devices easily managed the inclusion of the new preaction systems. While many fire alarm control panels can only handle one preaction system, the Potter P400R can handle multiple preaction systems at once. This unique capability allowed the five preaction systems to all be linked to the single P400R, thus saving money from having to purchase multiple panels and subsequently linking them together.

The existing system contained two separate fire alarm control panels—one panel for regular system functionality and the second for releasing capabilities. This caused problems as both panels did not always communicate well and incurred increased initial costs and maintenance upkeep.

Potter P400R solved these problems with its ability to serve as both an addressable fire alarm control panel and releasing panel. AllSafe Fire and Security reduced installation time and costs by programming one panel instead of synchronizing two. Potter’s exclusive Quadrasync multi-strobe circuit synchronization technology alleviated many system wide concerns.

The overall process was seamless as the PSN-1000E Power Expanders provided power to notification appliances, auxiliary power, and releasing circuits for preaction.

Today, Polk County Courthouse employees enjoy an increased sense of security and awareness with a Potter fire alarm system. The network of addressable devices connected to the P400R fire panel monitors every inch of the premises and provides instant notification of emergency situations.

“The P400R sends me nightly e-mail updates of the current status of our system that I can disseminate to key personnel and first responders. Also, it texts alarm and trouble conditions straight to my smartphone, keeping me up-to-date on everything I need to know. If Polk County’s needs change, system alerts can also be sent via e-mail. The P400R can also be programmed to send reminder messages such as when annual tests or inspections are due,” said Matt Hawkins, Polk County Courthouse administrative services director.

The P400R’s ability to communicate to a central monitoring station using an IP/Internet connection not only eliminates the need for dedicated phone lines, but also provides a faster and more secure means of transmitting crucial system information to responding personnel.

 “With the independence of a Potter system, we no longer require remote monitoring services and are able to perform our own strobe testing,” Hawkins said.

Last minute changes in preparation for the AHJ inspection sparked an entire system reprogramming. “It took our tech,John Ripplinger, 15 minutes to rewrite everything when it would normally take more than four hours with other fire alarm systems,” said Mike Beecher, manager of AllSafe Fire and Security. The new system exceeded the AHJ’s inspection requirements, leaving everyone satisfied with the end result.

“Installing these Potter products was the easiest install I have done in over 25 years,” Beecher said.