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Athena Says Its Cameras Can Detect 1,000 COVID-19 Infections an Hour

PCMag
PCMag
Mar 24 · 3 min read

When anyone with an elevated skin temperature is detected in a hospital, airport, or other location, a real-time video feed is sent to official personnel so the person can be approached and potentially quarantined without delay.

By Matthew Humphries

UPDATE 3/25: The legitimacy of Athena’s Fever Detection System has been called into question since this article was posted. IPVM claims the system is fake and provides multiple points of evidence to back up the accusation.

IPVM believes Athena is using fake marketing, fake customers, and fake comments, and that the company uses Hikvision cameras, which are banned in the US. When approached by IPVM with evidence of fake image use, Athena is thought to have deleted the offending images and in one instance blamed a third party that created the website for the fever-detection system.

PCMag contacted Athena Security with IPVM’s evidence and in an email response, Chris Ciaberra, co-founder and CTO of Athena said, “These guys are just spreading false information and our lawyers will deal with them. We do not sell Hikvision cameras.” He goes on to state that, “Hikvision are illegal to sell in [the] USA and nowhere on our website do we say we sell Hikvision. We offer hardware to make it [easier] for our customers just like our Gun Detection system and we offer some clients Flir cameras that [are] double the price but if clients want them we will supply them. “

Original Story 3/23:
In order to limit the impact of the coronavirus, we need fast and effective ways of testing people for infection. Athena Security believes its Fever Detection System can do just that.

As Fast Company reports, Athena’s system relies on cameras, artificial intelligence, and a very precise thermometer to detect individuals who are potentially infected with COVID-19. The Fever Detection System achieves this by looking for elevated temperatures while ignoring other non-human hot objects, such as a hot drink in the hand or a cell phone in use.

The benefits of such a system are clear. It’s very fast, non-contact, and can assess a large crowd of people, or a stream of people throughout a day autonomously. The limits of the system are 1,000 temperature reads per hour. Athena says its temperature sensor is accurate to 0.4 degrees Celsius and automatically calibrates itself to the ambient temperature of the area being monitored. The system is also capable of taking the temperature of multiple people at once and detects heat from 12 different areas of the body, Athena says.

For the system to work, it requires two infrared thermal with visual cameras, a processing box, router, and a medical grade thermometer. Once running, it detects a person with an elevated temperature and triggers a real-time video feed of their movements to a designated individual such as a security guard or administrator. An alarm can also be triggered and web or mobile notifications setup.

Athena’s camera system is already in use by the US Air Force for detecting people carrying guns, but this new coronavirus-focused alternative is aimed at airports and hospitals. The company is already thought to have a few airports and Fortune 500 companies signed up to use the system, but won’t say who they are, Fast Company says. Retail locations are also a potential customer.


Originally published at https://www.pcmag.com.

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