How Technologies Can Help Fight Bushfire?

Wednesday, January 8, 2020 - 11:43

As places around the world face drier and hotter weather, intense storms, flash floods, droughts, and ravaging wildfires have become global phenomenon.

According to an ISCA report, Technologies and innovations can play a vital role in bringing new solutions to decelerate climate change and mitigate its impacts, support the preservation of biodiversity and environments, while safeguarding human health.

Australia continues to experience unprecedented destruction from bushfires and now is the time to harness technological tools, and find innovative ways to help alleviate the problem, and also prevent future disaster.

There are a number of new technological solutions emerging using artificial intelligence, data management, robotics and high-resolution mapping software that can help to prevent wildfires, City Metric reports.

According to the Conversation report, crucial data needed for bushfire prevention planning can come from a range of sources, including Internet of Things (IoT) sensors collecting weather data, archived data from the past, modeling tools, satellite images, and even social media.

Such predictions provide timely and targeted information that can greatly aid emergency services in doing their job, especially as they often have stretched resources on the ground.

Mesh Network:

Next-generation “mesh networks” are an emerging technology made possible by the convergence of 5G, artificial intelligence, billions of Internet of Things (IoT) sensors, and virtual and augmented reality. With this technology, people in a bushfire or other disaster-afflicted area can create a local mesh network using their smartphone. They could contribute by recording 360 degree videos, make narrative reports about unfolding events, take close-up photos etc, then distribute these to the mesh network.

Photogrammetric Artificial Intelligence:

Photogrammetric artificial intelligence can produce reliable information about physical environments by processing captured imagery. It integrates these videos to create live holograms in real time. This form of virtual reality will put observers right there on the ground. This will help authorities away from the scene to verify reports and more effectively coordinate relief efforts.

Drone:

Drones have additional uses in combatting wildfires. They can be fitted with both regular and thermal imaging cameras and can fly into areas that manned aircraft can’t – including at night when winds die down and fires become theoretically easier to control.

Robots:

Another technological development that keeps humans out of harm’s way is the firefighting robot. Often wildfires get so hot that firefighters are unable to get close enough to extinguish them. Now engineers have come up with a firefighting robot that can.

Virtual Reality (VR):

The VR simulators create 3D representations of the fire scenario, with trainers able to change physical characteristics like wind direction and speed, to prepare smokejumpers for real life engagements in truly dangerous conditions.

IoT:

Low-powered Internet of Things (IoT) connected sensors are also being used to gather data from remote areas that are potential wildfire hotspots. Sensors can be used to detect and measure the level of CO2 and check for unseasonably high temperatures, indicating the possible presence of fires in the area.

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