Opportunities for Australian SAR agencies to tap into mobile phone technology innovation were highlighted in a presentation by Dr. Kim Blacker, the founder of Stratelo, during the AAUS ROTORTECH 2022 Conference, held on June 22–23.
Tuggerah, New South Wales, Australia, June 2022 According to Kim Blacker MD, founder of Stratelo, based north of Sydney, who will present on SAR technology innovation at AAUS ROTORTECH 2022 Conference, in Brisbane, on June 22, mobile phones hold the key to quick and precise location of people who are lost and offer a key opportunity to augment search and rescue (SAR) services in Australia.
According to the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience, Australia’s search and rescue system saves an average of 2,000 individuals each year who would have otherwise died on the oceans, in the highlands, or in the desert and returns them to their families. The SAR system is utilised every day of the year, according to the Australia National SAR Council, with five events on average occuring each day.
SAR is a crucial service that brings together a number of authorities, including Commonwealth, Federal and State, across civilian, police, and defence resources because of Australia’s enormous area, frequently harsh environment, and mainly unpopulated interior.
Kim Blacker will describe how a UAV mounted cellular search and rescue solution can use a mobile phone as a rescue beacon to quickly and affordably geolocate the person or people of interest and, if they are conscious and able, communicate with them. “Many people who are lost, injured, or in a disaster area are in possession of a working mobile phone, even if they are in an area with no mobile coverage,” Blacker says.
Weighting as little as half a kilogramme, cellular-based search and rescue instruments like Smith Myers’ ARTEMIS solution have been fitted onto very cheap commercial UAVs up to bigger air-certified systems for manned fixed and rotary winged aircraft.
The talk features use scenarios for border security, disaster assistance, and search & rescue. The topics discussed will include geolocation methods and how the range of geolocation can change depending on geography, the cellular environment, and the strength of the deployed cellular search and rescue solution from a few kilometres to tens of kilometres.