The Enzo Hruby Foundation collaborate with Samsung Techwin to improve security at Milan Cathedral

For more than six centuries, Milan Cathedral has been celebrated the whole world over as one of the finest examples of unique sculpture and architectural masterpieces, and as the very symbol of the city of Milan.

A security incident in July 2013 emphasized the need to update security at the monument and the Enzo Hruby Foundation, a leader in Italy and Europe in terms of offering protection for historical and artistic sites, took quick steps in close collaboration with the professional security division of Samsung Techwin to provide the very latest video surveillance technology in a prestigious protection project.

“We’re very happy to be able to offer this concrete contribution to our city,” said Carlo Hruby, the Vice President of the Enzo Hruby Foundation. “This project combines the protection of such a unique cultural heritage and the symbol of Milan, monitoring an extensive municipal area, the protection of which is for the benefit and peace-of-mind of citizens and tourists alike. Today, video surveillance security is one of the fastest developing sectors and in this project, which is a fine example of perfect collaboration between the public and private sectors, some of the very latest technologies have been applied giving the Police an irreplaceable instrument to help them in their duties.”

“This project let us use the very latest solutions to protect an area loved by every citizen of Milan and more,” said Fabio Andreoni, Italy Country Manager for Samsung Techwin. “We’re particularly pleased to be able to show how technology, used in an effective way, can really help make the work done by the Authorities much more efficient, and in broader terms, also improve the quality of living for the people of Milan. It’s just one piece of a more complex puzzle, but if making Piazza del Duomo safer helps contribute to a more efficient management of the area, with an increase in the number of visitors and consequent induced revenue, we’ll have proven how we can reach important goals quickly and with excellent results, by operating in harmony with various public and private bodies.”

To guarantee protection for the monument and control the vast urban area around the perimeter of the Cathedral and on the rooftop Terraces, a modern video surveillance system of the latest generation was installed, with 20 remotely managed HD night vision cameras operating 24h/day.

Twelve cameras with a video analysis function were installed in strategic points around the perimeter, to guarantee complete coverage and leave no area uncovered.
Seven cameras of the same kind have been installed on the terraces, with also one motor-driven HD camera that covers the entire length of the central part.

All the cameras have built-in IR night vision illuminators, so no modifications to the current lighting was required around the perimeter or on the Terraces, for a non-invasive intervention in terms of installation and infrastructure. The new cameras, the images of which are transmitted to the Local Police operations centre and the Provincial Police Headquarters, are integrated with the images from the urban video surveillance system connected to a high-tech video analysis system that can detect and classify suspicious activity and objects, in addition to the 1,300 cameras already managed by the authorities. Umbra Control from Perugia was responsible for the project.

“With this important project, we’re protecting not only the Monument, but also the Piazza and the area around the Cathedral,” said the President of the Venerable Duomo Factory, Angelo Caloia, “5 million people visit the Cathedral every year and in 2015 we estimate 20 million tourists will pass through the doors: the Factory is working hard to keep all areas of the Monument open with 12 building sites, and also thanks to important security measures such as this. This major project is important not only for the Cathedral, it also provides added security for the city with the upcoming Expo 2015 and we can only thank those who, like the Enzo Hruby Foundation and Samsung Techwin, were ready to share this onerous task.”

The work of the Enzo Hruby Foundation and Samsung Techwin didn’t finish with the project to protect the Milan Cathedral and its heritage though. The two parties have in fact been called on to protect the Duomo’s Museum, which reopened on 4th November after eight years of restoration work.

The security system meets the specific requirements associated with the particular characteristics of the environments and the variety of the works of art in the museum, with solutions aimed at satisfying the aesthetic needs of the building, which has been the home of all sorts of materials that tell the story of the Milan Cathedral since 1953. The museum contains works of art of notable worth including tapestries, sculptures, architectural models, paintings, stained glass, hangings and other works, which require specifically studied protection systems to be kept safe.

The latest generation Samsung Techwin cameras with full HD resolution and the new WiseNet 3 processors were used to guarantee a system with the very highest image quality, offering optimized compression and management of network resources. The most suitable camera was chosen for each environment both from an aesthetic point of view and in terms of performance – the museum has 26 rooms with a total surface area of 2,000 m2. Most of the cameras in the museum are mini dome interior cameras with IR illuminators. New fish-eye cameras with 360 degree lenses were also used in some of the rooms to control the whole exhibit space. All the cameras send their signals to a central recording unit, with three Samsung Techwin SRN-1000 Network Video Recorders.

The Enzo Hruby Foundation was established in Milan almost six years ago on the initiative of the Hruby family and HESA S.p.A. and takes its name from the founder and current President, Enzo Hruby who introduced the very first electronic security systems to Italy back in the late 1960’s. The Foundation aims to promote a culture of security, protecting our heritage from theft, and vandalism through the correct use of the latest advanced technology.

Of the various initiatives, the Enzo Hruby Foundation offers a concrete contribution to protecting the historical and artistic heritage of Italy by providing security systems for buildings, property and works of art of particular historical and cultural value using burglar alarms, video surveillance and fire-fighting systems. Once the projects of interest have been selected, the Foundation contacts top installers to prepare the relevant projects.

The Turin Shroud during the extension of the Turin Cathedral, the manuscripts of the Vatican Apostolic Library during digitalization of the documents, the Cini Foundation, the St. Francis of Assisi Library, the Asinelli Tower in Bologna and Milan Cathedral are just some of the sites the Enzo Hruby Foundation has helped protect.
Important and prestigious interventions, to which the Foundation’s field of action is not however limited, committed as always to protecting a patrimony that some may consider to be of minor importance that represents a great wealth for our country.

As well as the projects, to pursue its institutional purpose, the Enzo Hruby Foundation promotes studies, research, seminars, conventions and publications on the theme of security and the optimal use of available technologies. The initiatives of the Enzo Hruby Foundation also include the “H D’Oro” awarded every year to outstanding installers for the best security installations, and publication of the “EHF – Security for culture” the Foundation’s official magazine.

Samsung Techwin products used in the Milan Cathedral Project

Cathedral Perimeter:

–    12 x  SNO-6084RP 2MP 1080p Full HD IP cameras

Cathedral Terrace:

–    4 x  SNO-6084RP 2MP 1080p Full HD IP cameras
–    1 x  SNP-6200RHP 2MP 1080p Full HD IP Dome camera

Cathedral Recording:

–    One SRN-1000 Network Video Recorder


–    74 x  SNO-6084RP 2MP 1080p Full HD IP cameras
–    2 x  SNF-7010P 360⁰ Fisheye interior cameras

Museum Recording

–    3 x SRN-1000 Network Video Recorders