US firm launches mini wireless surveillance cameras

San Diego-based MicroPower Technologies has raised approximately $2.2m through a variety of private and institutional investment sources to fund the launch of its low-power wireless surveillance cameras.

MicroPower released the Alpha version of its Mini-i wireless video-surveillance camera in October this year and plans to release production units of its initial product line in the first half of 2011.

The camera has the ability to capture and transmit VGA-resolution video to a video hub at up to 30 frames per second at distances of up to one mile over its own proprietary Trustlink interface. The advantage, the company claims, is that by doing so the cameras use one twentieth of the power input of competing technologies such as 802.11, Bluetooth or 802.16.

The MicroPower hub then presents the video as industry-standard H.264 or motion JPEG streams over Ethernet. Each camera appears on the network as a standard-IP camera that can inter-operate with network video recorders or personal computers.

The company says the surveillance cameras can be placed virtually anywhere since they are powered by a small solar panel measuring less than 10in by 4in.

MicroPower intends to sell both fixed cameras for surveillance as well as wearable cameras. Initially these will be the size of a credit card but will ultimately be the size of a miniature Bluetooth-sized ear piece and capable of running for up to 12 hours on a single charge.