Access Control System

Automatic License Plate Recognition has a valuable role to play in the access control sector as a major enabler of automated technology that will efficiently manage parking installations. Whether in the government or private sector, numerous opportunities exist for improved physical security through the implementation of a license plate recognition system. Increasingly, gated communities, universities and corporate campuses are relying less on security personnel and more on ALPR systems to monitor the entry and exit of vehicles into the community. Typical high volume and high value facilities such as casinos and hotels need effective tracking systems for vehicle location, damage verification, employee performance, speedier retrieval times and VIP features as part of their parking infrastructure.

TDS ALPR system can be configured to allow access for authorized vehicles only and prompts security checks on all other vehicles, thereby improving security, personnel effectiveness and increasing community safety. Granting or denying access to a gated parking facility, secure compound, private community or government facility generally requires some action on the part of the driver of the vehicle. The TDS server software suite provides packages that will grant access to any gated area based on the license plate of the vehicle approaching the gate, automatically and without the necessity of a guard or attendant. For more secure facilities, the system can be configured so that when a vehicle approaches the entry gate the license plate number is captured and a vehicle fingerprint is created. These are then compared to an existing database for license number and vehicle image correlation.

The system can be augmented with a second camera to capture a picture of the driver. The image of the vehicle as well as the driver who are expected to be associated with that license plate number are presented on a screen to the security control person in the event the vehicle did not correlate with any of the records in the database. This allows security to manually open the gate if so desired. The system can also be augmented with an intercom to allow for communications between the security person and the entering vehicle.

TDS products are able to accomplish this by automating the Access Control process by capturing vehicle license plate data and immediately verifying it against known lists to ensure the vehicle in question is authorized and not suspect or wanted. This qualification of vehicles allows for the automated control of barriers or gates into the site.

Single Lane Stand Alone Access Control

The most basic TDS Access Control system is a stand-alone single-lane license plate based vehicle admittance control device. It is designed to control and monitor vehicle access into a controlled parking facility. As a vehicle approaches a gate, its license plate is read and compared to a list of valid license plates for that facility. If a matching plate (authorized) is found, the gate is opened to grant access to the vehicle. If a license plate cannot be read, or if no matching plate is found in the database (including authorized license plates and temporary guests), the system will wait for a remote location to take over the transaction and decide whether or not to open the gate. An alarm can be triggered when a transaction remains incomplete. All transaction information, including images and license plate reads, are stored in the local database for later review. A front profile of the vehicle is created from the image and stored locally in the lane processor. Exit from the parking facility is via a one-way exit barrier.


Authorized users can access and modify the database using a PC connected to the admittance control device via a direct Ethernet connection, an RS-422 connection or an Ethernet connection. A second camera and gate can be added to the system for control of two adjacent entry lanes.

The TDS Access Control system can be readily expanded to handle:

Exit Verification for Facility Management and Security

The addition of a monitoring station in the exit lane provides the ability to increase security in the facility and maintain an inventory of the vehicles in the facility at any given time. In its simplest form the license plate of the vehicle is read and a transaction sent to the database in the entry processor. The database is updated and can be polled to provide an inventory of vehicles in the facility. The addition of a gate allows for controlled exit of the facility. In this case the image fingerprint of the vehicle is compared to the fingerprint that was generated on entry to confirm the license plate is still attached to the same vehicle that it was attached to when it entered the facility. To further increase the security of the parking facility, TDS can add a separate lateral profiler. The addition of this profile provides additional confidence that the vehicle is not being stolen. For a high security application, the addition of facial recognition and finger print recognition systems on entry and exit can provide for additional security.

Multiple Entry/Exit

In order to accommodate multiple entry and/or exit Authorized vehicle numbers and fingerprints are stored in the master control system database. Authorized users can access and modify the master control system database using a PC client application via an Ethernet connection. The system can also transmit the recognized plate number, the vehicle image and the entry/exit time to a master control system.

Multiple Facilities

The system is very scalable. Once a centralized server has been implemented, additional parking facilities can be easily to the system.

Facility Inventory Management

The system maintains a current inventory of all vehicles in the facility. A transaction database is also maintained. From these two databases, reports are readily available for analysis of the parking lot usage and other parking lot statistics. An administrator can also readily determine if a particular vehicle is in the facility and also what percentage of time the vehicle has been in the facility over a selected period of time.

Fare Collection

The system can be augmented with Automatic Vehicle Identification and/or smart cards for fare collection purposes. It is also fully capable of being integrated with entry and exit ticket handling equipment for use in a public parking system. The lane controller provided by TDS is a Linux based system capable of handling the additional processing tasks associated with these various forms of payment.