Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 9

Search results for: search and rescue

9 Ship Detection Requirements Analysis for Different Sea States: Validation on Real SAR Data

Authors: Jaime Martín-de-Nicolás, David Mata-Moya, Nerea del-Rey-Maestre, Pedro Gómez-del-Hoyo, María-Pilar Jarabo-Amores

Abstract:

Ship detection is nowadays quite an important issue in tasks related to sea traffic control, fishery management and ship search and rescue. Although it has traditionally been carried out by patrol ships or aircrafts, coverage and weather conditions and sea state can become a problem. Synthetic aperture radars can surpass these coverage limitations and work under any climatological condition. A fast CFAR ship detector based on a robust statistical modeling of sea clutter with respect to sea states in SAR images is used. In this paper, the minimum SNR required to obtain a given detection probability with a given false alarm rate for any sea state is determined. A Gaussian target model using real SAR data is considered. Results show that SNR does not depend heavily on the class considered. Provided there is some variation in the backscattering of targets in SAR imagery, the detection probability is limited and a post-processing stage based on morphology would be suitable.

Keywords: SAR, generalized gamma distribution, detection curves, radar detection.

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8 MIOM: A Mixed-Initiative Operational Model for Robots in Urban Search and Rescue

Authors: Mario Gianni, Federico Nardi, Federico Ferri, Filippo Cantucci, Manuel A. Ruiz Garcia, Karthik Pushparaj, Fiora Pirri

Abstract:

In this paper, we describe a Mixed-Initiative Operational Model (MIOM) which directly intervenes on the state of the functionalities embedded into a robot for Urban Search&Rescue (USAR) domain applications. MIOM extends the reasoning capabilities of the vehicle, i.e. mapping, path planning, visual perception and trajectory tracking, with operator knowledge. Especially in USAR scenarios, this coupled initiative has the main advantage of enhancing the overall performance of a rescue mission. In-field experiments with rescue responders have been carried out to evaluate the effectiveness of this operational model.

Keywords: Actively articulated tracked vehicles, mixed-initiative planning interfeces, robot planning, urban search and rescue.

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7 An Integrated Cognitive Performance Evaluation Framework for Urban Search and Rescue Applications

Authors: Antonio D. Lee, Steven X. Jiang

Abstract:

A variety of techniques and methods are available to evaluate cognitive performance in Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) applications. However, traditional cognitive performance evaluation techniques typically incorporate either the conscious or systematic aspect, failing to take into consideration the subconscious or intuitive aspect. This leads to incomplete measures and produces ineffective designs. In order to fill the gaps in past research, this study developed a theoretical framework to facilitate the integration of situation awareness (SA) and intuitive pattern recognition (IPR) to enhance the cognitive performance representation in USAR applications. This framework provides guidance to integrate both SA and IPR in order to evaluate the cognitive performance of the USAR responders. The application of this framework will help improve the system design.

Keywords: Cognitive performance, intuitive pattern recognition, situation awareness, urban search and rescue.

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6 A Low-Cost Vision-Based Unmanned Aerial System for Extremely Low-Light GPS-Denied Navigation and Thermal Imaging

Authors: Chang Liu, John Nash, Stephen D. Prior

Abstract:

This paper presents the design and implementation details of a complete unmanned aerial system (UAS) based on commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) components, focusing on safety, security, search and rescue scenarios in GPS-denied environments. In particular, The aerial platform is capable of semi-autonomously navigating through extremely low-light, GPS-denied indoor environments based on onboard sensors only, including a downward-facing optical flow camera. Besides, an additional low-cost payload camera system is developed to stream both infra-red video and visible light video to a ground station in real-time, for the purpose of detecting sign of life and hidden humans. The total cost of the complete system is estimated to be $1150, and the effectiveness of the system has been tested and validated in practical scenarios.

Keywords: Unmanned aerial system, commercial-off-the-shelf, extremely low-light, GPS-denied, optical flow, infrared video.

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5 Urban Search and Rescue and Rapid Field Assessment of Damaged and Collapsed Building Structures

Authors: Abid I. Abu-Tair, Gavin M. Wilde, John M. Kinuthia

Abstract:

Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) is a functional capability that has been developed to allow the United Kingdom Fire and Rescue Service to deal with ‘major incidents’ primarily involving structural collapse. The nature of the work undertaken by USAR means that staying out of a damaged or collapsed building structure is not usually an option for search and rescue personnel. As a result there is always a risk that they themselves could become victims. For this paper, a systematic and investigative review using desk research was undertaken to explore the role which structural engineering can play in assisting search and rescue personnel to conduct structural assessments when in the field. The focus is on how search and rescue personnel can assess damaged and collapsed building structures, not just in terms of structural damage that may been countered, but also in relation to structural stability. Natural disasters, accidental emergencies, acts of terrorism and other extreme events can vary significantly in nature and ferocity, and can cause a wide variety of damage to building structures. It is not possible or, even realistic, to provide search and rescue personnel with definitive guidelines and procedures to assess damaged and collapsed building structures as there are too many variables to consider. However, understanding what implications damage may have upon the structural stability of a building structure will enable search and rescue personnel to better judge and quantify risk from a life-safety standpoint. It is intended that this will allow search and rescue personnel to make informed decisions and ensure every effort is made to mitigate risk, so that they themselves do not become victims.

Keywords: Damaged and collapsed building structures, life safety, quantifying risk, search and rescue personnel, structural assessments in the field.

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4 A Review on Marine Search and Rescue Operations Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Authors: S. P. Yeong, L. M. King, S. S. Dol

Abstract:

There have been rigorous research and development of unmanned aerial vehicles in the field of search and rescue (SAR) operation recently. UAVs reduce unnecessary human risks while assisting rescue efforts through aerial imagery, topographic mapping and emergency delivery. The application of UAVs in offshore and nearshore marine SAR missions is discussed in this paper. Projects that integrate UAV technology into their systems are introduced to highlight the great advantages and capabilities of UAVs. Scenarios where UAVs could provide invaluable assistance are also suggested.

Keywords: Marine SAR, nearshore, offshore, search and rescue, UAS, UAV.

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3 A New Multi-Target, Multi-Agent Search-and-Rescue Path Planning Approach

Authors: Jean Berger, Nassirou Lo, Martin Noel

Abstract:

Perfectly suited for natural or man-made emergency and disaster management situations such as flood, earthquakes, tornadoes, or tsunami, multi-target search path planning for a team of rescue agents is known to be computationally hard, and most techniques developed so far come short to successfully estimate optimality gap. A novel mixed-integer linear programming (MIP) formulation is proposed to optimally solve the multi-target multi-agent discrete search and rescue (SAR) path planning problem. Aimed at maximizing cumulative probability of successful target detection, it captures anticipated feedback information associated with possible observation outcomes resulting from projected path execution, while modeling agent discrete actions over all possible moving directions. Problem modeling further takes advantage of network representation to encompass decision variables, expedite compact constraint specification, and lead to substantial problem-solving speed-up. The proposed MIP approach uses CPLEX optimization machinery, efficiently computing near-optimal solutions for practical size problems, while giving a robust upper bound obtained from Lagrangean integrality constraint relaxation. Should eventually a target be positively detected during plan execution, a new problem instance would simply be reformulated from the current state, and then solved over the next decision cycle. A computational experiment shows the feasibility and the value of the proposed approach.

Keywords: Search path planning, search and rescue, multi-agent, mixed-integer linear programming, optimization.

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2 A New Method for Detection of Artificial Objects and Materials from Long Distance Environmental Images

Authors: H. Dujmic, V. Papic, H. Turic

Abstract:

The article presents a new method for detection of artificial objects and materials from images of the environmental (non-urban) terrain. Our approach uses the hue and saturation (or Cb and Cr) components of the image as the input to the segmentation module that uses the mean shift method. The clusters obtained as the output of this stage have been processed by the decision-making module in order to find the regions of the image with the significant possibility of representing human. Although this method will detect various non-natural objects, it is primarily intended and optimized for detection of humans; i.e. for search and rescue purposes in non-urban terrain where, in normal circumstances, non-natural objects shouldn-t be present. Real world images are used for the evaluation of the method.

Keywords: Landscape surveillance, mean shift algorithm, image segmentation, target detection.

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1 Design of a 5-Joint Mechanical Arm with User-Friendly Control Program

Authors: Amon Tunwannarux, Supanunt Tunwannarux

Abstract:

This paper describes the design concepts and implementation of a 5-Joint mechanical arm for a rescue robot named CEO Mission II. The multi-joint arm is a five degree of freedom mechanical arm with a four bar linkage, which can be stretched to 125 cm. long. It is controlled by a teleoperator via the user-friendly control and monitoring GUI program. With Inverse Kinematics principle, we developed the method to control the servo angles of all arm joints to get the desired tip position. By clicking the determined tip position or dragging the tip of the mechanical arm on the computer screen to the desired target point, the robot will compute and move its multi-joint arm to the pose as seen on the GUI screen. The angles of each joint are calculated and sent to all joint servos simultaneously in order to move the mechanical arm to the desired pose at once. The operator can also use a joystick to control the movement of this mechanical arm and the locomotion of the robot. Many sensors are installed at the tip of this mechanical arm for surveillance from the high level and getting the vital signs of victims easier and faster in the urban search and rescue tasks. It works very effectively and easy to control. This mechanical arm and its software were developed as a part of the CEO Mission II Rescue Robot that won the First Runner Up award and the Best Technique award from the Thailand Rescue Robot Championship 2006. It is a low cost, simple, but functioning 5-Jiont mechanical arm which is built from scratch, and controlled via wireless LAN 802.11b/g. This 5-Jiont mechanical arm hardware concept and its software can also be used as the basic mechatronics to many real applications.

Keywords: Multi-joint, mechanical arm, inverse kinematics, rescue robot, GUI control program.

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