Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Managing and mitigating disaster: new research centre to develop technologies for emergency scenarios

03.11.2005


Having vital location or map-based information at their fingertips could make the difference between life and death for rescue workers and emergency services working at the scene of a natural disaster or terrorist attack.

A research centre is being launched at The University of Nottingham to look at how the latest advances in computer software and mobile communications could help agencies to prepare for a major event, such as the 2012 Olympic Games, and plan their response should a disaster or incident occur.

In emergency situations, professionals have to make tough, on-the-spot decisions on how to deal with a range of issues, whether it be when to evacuate homes, how to get commuters home when public transport is out of action or how to get the injured to life-saving medical treatment.



In dealing with these challenges, it is essential that people are able to access information on, for example, which flood barriers are likely to breach first, which roads are impassable to motorists and which hospitals have the right specialist equipment.

But problems can arise when data is held by a wide range of agencies and on different computer systems.

The Centre for Geospatial Sciences, being launched at the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors in London on Monday November 21, brings together leading experts in geographic information technology, human factors and spatial cognition and computer science.

Among the research will be work looking at how to get different specialised computer systems to ‘talk’ to one another so that huge amounts of data held by different organisations from all over the world could be accessed and analysed over the internet or via mobile devices.

Another strand will study the issue of tracking, monitoring and navigation. This includes the use of GPS in-car navigation and traffic and pedestrian modelling and management, which could be used to find the best routes from the scene of a disaster to the nearest hospital or in closing off roads around the affected area.

As part of this the researchers will be looking at how technology could be used to assist people in the use of map-based or location data. This could be used in situations like the aftermath of the July 7 bombings, which disrupted the public transport network and closed key roads, or even by personnel faced with more dangerous situations such as negotiating a way around landmines or avoiding enemy territory.

A challenge facing the research team will be how graphic information, such as maps, can be effectively communicated through mobile devices such as mobile phones and PDAs. The technology has an enormous range of potential applications in commercial areas as well as those associated with disaster management and mitigation. For example, direct marketing offering discounts via mobile phone when shoppers pass a particular store; services that can allow friends co-ordinate via their mobile phone to choose a place to have a drink; facilities for businesses to track the location of their staff while out working in the field; the use of sensory information from mobile devices, such as the vibrate setting on a phone, to issue directions to a location.

The launch of the new centre will take the form of an inaugural seminar titled Disaster Management and Mitigation: The Role Geospatial Interoperability. Among the planned presentations will be:

  • Providing the Spatial Foundations for Major Incident Planning and Management in the UK, Dr Vanessa Lawrence, Director General and CEO, Ordnance Survey.
  • Readiness Response and Recovery: NGA’s Support to Disasters and Special Events, Dr Gregory Smith, Chief Scientist of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, USA.
  • Post-Tsunami Lessons, Dr Jerome Bequignon, Direction de la Defense et de la Securite Civiles, Ministere de Interieur, France.
  • Managing Security in an Open, Interoperable Environment, Dr Simon Stringer, MD Security, QinetiQ
  • Positioning and Tracking, Professor Terry Moore, Director of the Institute for Engineering Surveying and Space Geodesy (IESSG), The University of Nottingham.

Professor Mike Jackson, the director of the new centre, said: “I am hugely encouraged that the centre has attracted leading researchers from around the world to continue their research and study here at Nottingham and to address some of the research challenges so tragically brought to the fore with the natural disasters that have occurred over the last year around the world and the terrorist events which have added to the tragedies of nature.

“I am also delighted to have such eminent speakers from the USA, Europe and the UK speaking at our inaugural seminar. “

Professor Mike Jackson | alfa
Further information:
http://www.nottingham.ac.uk

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions
12.12.2018 | Universität Zürich

nachricht NIST's antenna evaluation method could help boost 5G network capacity and cut costs
11.12.2018 | National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tangled magnetic fields power cosmic particle accelerators

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

In search of missing worlds, Hubble finds a fast evaporating exoplanet

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>