NCL Epic is to be the First to Use a Radio Operating System developed my Norwegian company Ving Card, who has been supplying door entry systems for cruise ships and hotels world wide.
The currently used systems are all off-line; that means all details of exit, entries, etc. are kept only in each doorways mechanics, and they presently only maintain the history of 100 “events”. If any questions about entry arise anyone investigating has to physically go to the door to retrieve the information.
With the new Radio Operating System, each door system is equipped with an antenna, and sends radio signals on every type of “event” to the ship’s servers in 30 seconds. The signal goes from the lock, to a gateway, through the Ethernet to the ship’s Zigby server.
It was explained that with the previously used system, if a card was lost, and then replaced by guest relations, the old card would still work in the door until the new card was first used.
For example, if a person found a key card in the hallway, they could conceivably walk down the hallway, trying the card in every door they pass…. And they could get “lucky” and find the cabin door it opened.
With the new system, not only is the lost keycard made useless immediately, the system will pick up the attempted use of a suspicious/ incorrect card after 5 attempts in different doors and send a warning.
These warnings, as well as any events like break-ins etc. can then be transmitted by text messages to the onboard telephones of the appropriate personnel, who can react immediately.
The system also reports doors that have been accidentally left ajar, which could potentially make for an unsafe situation. The operators/monitors of the system would have the ability to pre-set an amount of time before warnings are raised about the door ajar.
With the new Ving Card system REAL TIME action is the key!
Of course, some may have thought that these types of systems were already in functional on ships. And that does raise some questions about existing ship’s systems, such as how long it might take for all cruise ship doors to get such equipment installed.