Every day, banks, insurance companies, currency exchange and other financial institutions move millions in transactions (currently, 96% of financial transactions are electronic), producing vital records for the safety of clients and the institutions themselves. In Brazil, the Central Bank enforces an explicit regulation on digitalization and storage of documents related to banking transactions, given the criticality of maintaining the data secure, consistent and confidential. In this scenario, it is essential to restrict physical access to the data rooms.
Since 2014, a national bank has been using NOVUS solutions to ensure higher security in the data centers where the electronic transactions are performed.
To reduce the people circulation within its two data centers, which have approximately 1500 m² each, and equipment with a cost of about 10 million USD, the financial institute makes use of the AirGate Modbus and the RHT-Air to monitor the temperature in the rooms, which carry a lot of temperature sensitive electronic devices, with the purpose of preventing system unavailability. Complementing the system, a FieldLogger was added to perform the measurements recordings. Interesting to note, all devices use wireless communication, facilitating the system installation and commissioning. The data is accessed and treated by a SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) software.
There were a few challenges to be addressed in this project. One of them was the restriction to using the existing communication infrastructure for sensor communication. So, the use of RHT-Air with AirGate Modbus happened to be a perfect choice, as they make use of their own wireless communication network, not interfering in the existing IT infrastructure. They communicate over the air allowing parameters access up to 1 km away. The product installation is simple and it does not require any cable. In case the telemetry network needs to be expanded, just add a new sensor where necessary and configure it remotely.
The proposed solution for controlling the temperature in the data centers required compatibility with consolidated automation practices and should not run nonstandard protocols. AirGate, a gateway designed to create wireless sensor networks, can be used as an RS485 Modbus network extender, offering flexibility and scalability to the various network segments belonging to the same installation. Security in data traffic is guaranteed by 128-bit encryption. The AirGate constantly searches the cleanest frequency channel to provide the best possible stability and reliability to the communication link.
Finally, the customer required a turnkey solution. So, the Application Engineering dpt. at NOVUS developed the complete solution, from planning, design, execution and final delivery. The turnkey project also included technical assistance and warranty for 12 months.
It took approximately four months of work before the solution became fully functional. It complied to the bank's main objective (access restriction to data rooms for increased operational safety), but it also brought further advantages, such as the possibility of recording the temperature and relative humidity data and perform statistics and studies towards system improvement. An important gain was the integration of the sensors to the bank’s HVAC system, allowing quick responses to any temperature deviation.