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Rapidly Deployable Infrastructures for Communications and Localization in Disaster Management

Angermann, Michael and Strang, Thomas and Kähmer, Martin and Kreutzer, Michael (2004) Rapidly Deployable Infrastructures for Communications and Localization in Disaster Management. In: United Nations International Workshop on the Use of Space Technology for Disaster Management. United Nations International Workshop on the Use of Space Technology for Disaster Management 2004, 2004-10-18 - 2004-10-22, München.

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Official URL: http://www.zki.caf.dlr.de/media/download/events/2004/


The potential of space-based technologies and infrastructures for increasing the effectiveness of disaster management is vast. Major advantages are (1) their inherent immunity to local detrimental influences, often originating from the cause of the disaster (earthquake, fire, social commotion,…) itself and (2) almost global coverage. Today most organizations employ one or more of the existing satellite communication networks (Eutelsat, Intelsat, PanAmSat, Inmarsat, Thuraya, Iridium,…), mostly for voice communications between local and central headquarters. Receivers for GPS (global positioning system) are widespread and provide personal navigation in an often unfamiliar environment. Earth observation satellites provide overhead imagery, mostly used in headquarters for assistance in strategic decisions, such as determining evacuation areas due to actual or predicted flooding. However, the potential of combining the individual systems to an integrated infrastructure is only utilized to a minimal extent. A major area of improvement is the extension of the information flow to and from the individual member of a rescue team. Today this is not the case due to two main problems: a) cost of hardware, and b) lack of a mechanism to select the information/addressee suiting the scope of the task at hand. Intelligent relaying and routing among different communication means (satellite/radio/short range radio, analog/digital) is a key to enable the use of cost-efficient COTS (common-of-the-shelf) hardware, such as PDAs (personal digital assistant) to participate in the overall system. A typical example is the use of a rapidly deployable wireless LAN (local area network) to connect conventional PDAs with data and voice capabilities to a network that also uses satellite links to uplink and downlink to the headquarters, without equipping the individuals with costly satellite terminals. Situation-aware and self-adaptable software is necessary to solve the second problem and provide the individual member of a rescue team with the relevant information, while preventing him or her to become flooded by information. We believe that intelligent middleware is the necessary “glue” between the individual space-based systems and the terrestrial ad-hoc infrastructure that will leverage their individual capabilities. We are presenting three different scenarios (earthquake/CSSR (collapsed structure search and rescue), field hospital, flooding/evacuation) in order to discuss relevant requirements and discuss suitable technical solutions. Simplicity of use is the utmost requirement for all considered scenarios. Rescue forces in a crisis area cannot bear the burden of assigning people to the configuration of soft- or hardware. Hence, all infrastructure components have to be self-configuring, networks have to be self-healing. Personal devices have to show relevant information immediately upon activation. Based on our perception of the requirements for suitable infrastructural support, as communicated to us by practitioners from multiple organizations, we see that the development of components and procedures for providing the international disaster management community with a cost efficient and rapidly deployable infrastructure, providing integrated communication and localization, is a worthwhile and reachable goal. In order to realize this goal, the formation of a consortium of interested and suitable partners to achieve the critical mass in terms of broad participation and expertise appears necessary. The goal of such a consortium should fit well into existing instruments such as the European 6th Framework IST (Information Society Technologies) research program, provided by the European Union.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/50283/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:Rapidly Deployable Infrastructures for Communications and Localization in Disaster Management
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Kähmer, MartinUniversität FreiburgUNSPECIFIED
Kreutzer, MichaelUniversität FreiburgUNSPECIFIED
Date:October 2004
Journal or Publication Title:United Nations International Workshop on the Use of Space Technology for Disaster Management
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Keywords:Rapidly Deployable Infrastructures, Disaster Management
Event Title:United Nations International Workshop on the Use of Space Technology for Disaster Management 2004
Event Location:München
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:2004-10-18 - 2004-10-22
Organizer:United Nations
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Transport
HGF - Program Themes:V SM - Sicherung der Mobilität (old)
DLR - Research area:Transport
DLR - Program:V SM - Sicherung der Mobilität
DLR - Research theme (Project):V - Galileo-Verkehrsanwendungen (old)
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Communication and Navigation > Communications Systems
Deposited By: Angermann, Dr.-Ing. Michael
Deposited On:06 Aug 2007
Last Modified:27 Apr 2009 14:08

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