Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Spotting Tomorrow’s Forest Fires

Date:
August 4, 2008
Source:
ICT Results
Summary:
A WiMAX-based connection to the internet enables fire-monitoring efforts in remote and mountainous regions. A forest fire remote monitoring system has been successfully tested in Portugal that could prevent the destruction of millions of hectares, as well as save lives.

A WiMAX-based connection to the internet enables fire-monitoring efforts in remote and mountainous regions.

A forest fire remote monitoring system has been successfully tested in Portugal that could prevent the destruction of millions of hectares, as well as save lives.

Vigilant monitoring of mountainous forest is very difficult and expensive – but a fire that takes hold can be even more expensive. The fires in Greece in summer 2007 destroyed more than 2700 kilometres of forest and farmland, as well as more than 1000 homes, and they caused the deaths of over 80 people.

The system tested in remote forest areas of Coimbra in Portugal uses WiMAX, a microwave access technology that can deliver data at up to 75 megabits per second over a range of 70km between fixed points (802.16.d), or its mobile version can provide 15mb/s over a four-kilometre radius (802.16.e). With WiMAX, remote spots can have a broadband connection without the need to lay expensive cable.

“We selected this environment to test our WiMAX solution because in a normal city or town you have plenty of communications channels, such as UMTS telephony or ADSL,” says Enrico Angori, a leading researcher on the project. “It is in extremely remote areas that it makes sense to use this wireless technology.”

WiMAX is not new. But the EU-funded WEIRD research team behind the Portuguese project extended the resilience and flexibility of the WiMAX technology. Bi-directionality was also tested, meaning that the fire monitors can pan or zoom onto a potential trouble spot with the remote cameras as well as receive signals from them.

Fighting fire with images

The fire monitoring system can reserve bandwidth for critical transmissions. Using an ‘authentication authorisation and accounting’ protocol, called DIAMETER, data traffic is identified and prioritised to ensure that vital video images, infrared heat images, verbal warnings or wind direction data are not interfered with or blocked by low-priority data traffic, such as emails.

The WEIRD team seamlessly integrated WiMAX with a range of other network technologies to enable high-quality, end-to-end communication, whatever the route.

The fire-monitoring system is designed to use ‘next-generation networks’ (NGN), decoupling the applications from the underlying transport stratum. Whatever the underlying network, the fire monitors’ signals will be passed end to end.

Not all applications are designed to run on NGNs. For these, the research team built a series of adaptors – known as WEIRD agents or WEIRD application programming interfaces – that allowed non-NGN applications to take advantage of the enhanced quality of service and seamless mobility features of the wireless fire-monitoring system.

Increasingly, WiMAX is being viewed as a complementary technology to existing wireless communication access channels, such as wifi and mobile telephony services. Therefore, the successful and seamless integration of WiMAX via ‘media-independent handover’ is an important step forward.

User-friendly fire

WEIRD researchers also developed software that hides the complexity of the configuration of the end-to-end communication channel. Whatever equipment or versions of WiMAX are used, an ordinary user can quickly and easily establish an end-to-end communication path, allowing them to concentrate on what is important – their job.

Further improvements in seamless handover of a communication flow from one system to another will be a future area of focus for the team, according to Giuseppe Martufi, another researcher with WEIRD.

“There are some coverage problems with the mobile version of WiMAX, says Martufi. “When you go indoors, for example, the coverage of mobile WiMAX decreases. It would be interesting to develop a seamless connection allowing you to move from mobile WiMAX to your home network that uses WiFi,” he muses.

WEIRD received funding from the EU's Sixth Framework Programme for research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by ICT Results. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

ICT Results. "Spotting Tomorrow’s Forest Fires." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080801074734.htm>.
ICT Results. (2008, August 4). Spotting Tomorrow’s Forest Fires. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080801074734.htm
ICT Results. "Spotting Tomorrow’s Forest Fires." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080801074734.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Big Waves In Arctic Ocean Threaten Polar Ice

Big Waves In Arctic Ocean Threaten Polar Ice

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Big waves in parts of the Arctic Ocean are unprecedented, mainly because they used to be covered in ice. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

AP (July 30, 2014) Thousands of people are trekking to a Bavarian farmer's field to check out a mysterious set of crop circles. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

AP (July 30, 2014) Every summer, tourists make the pilgrimage to Chincoteague Island, Va. to see wild ponies cross the Assateague Channel. But, it's the rockets sending to supplies to the International Space Station that are making this a year-round destination. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins