APP for drone assisted search and rescue

Hafenstrom is partner in AURORAL, a European Horizon 2020 funded project that involves collaboration between multiple European universities, research institutions, and industry partners. Currently, Hafenstrom is actively engaging with stakeholders and explore related project proposals building upon the framework that AURORAL provides to all involved partners.As a partner, Hafenstrom is responsible for developing and deploying one of the test pilots in Hålogaland. The Norwegian Health Pilot aims to develop a mobile app that can improve search and rescue operations. The project has been making great strides in transitioning from a concept to a testable solution. Three critical activities are currently underway: information design, user interface design, and defining value propositions. These activities are all crucial for creating a successful program that’s intuitive and useful.Recently, Hafenstrom attended a drone workshop at the university in Odense, Denmark. Here the aim was to gain insight into sensors, structural integrity, UAS, and upcoming standards, including U-space. The follow-up workshop will take place at NTNUs offices at Gjøvik, Norway. Here lessons learned will be discussed and analyzed with the aim  to integrate them into the Health Pilot scenario descriptions for search-and-rescue and evaluation of preparedness.

One of the challenges that the Health Pilot faces is understanding signal coverage and signal strength. To address this, the project has reached out to Norway’s largest telecom providers, Telenor and Telia. The solution needs to take into account terrain, obstacles, and other factors that can affect reception. The Health Pilot is exploring new height maps for visualizing and providing more insight into these areas.Using the knowledge gained, three use cases and 5 scenarios have been described, and will shape the foundation for deployment and testing:

  • Prepare:Plan scenario and conduct training, develop strategies, identify resouces and clarify roles, integrate contingency measures
  • Operational:Tactical and operational support
  • Evaluation:Evaluate and report results, adjust strategies (if necessary)

Scenarios include such various tasks as:

  1. Search for missing person (tourists, dementia)
  2. Search in areas where an incident occurred (rockslides, landslides, avalanche)
  3. Search in areas where an alert has been triggered (situational awareness: flooding, fire)
  4. Rescue operations at sea (ship run ashore, leaking)
  5. Examining area – preparedness (road, trainline, archipellago)

The Norwegian Health Pilot has the potential to make a real impact on search and rescue operations. Providing better situational awareness and improve response times in emergency situations; these are results where the pilot aim to lay the groundwork.