TeamAware received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 under grant agreement No 101019808. The Research & Innovation Action type project has a consortium of 24 private and public organisations from 13 different countries. AIT will work on interoperability services & data fusion algorithms to enable a Common Operational Picture (COP) for enhancing the situational awareness for first responders from different sectors. AIT is also responsible for End-to-End Security for the Cloud-Based Data Platform.
First responders come across three main challenges: Real-time localisation of team members, Detection of surrounding threats on site, and a reliable and fast fusion of information passed on to the first responders in a comprehensible user interface.
Till now the majority of first responders send their location by means of hand-held radios. This is an inefficient process especially in the event of smoke and zero visibility. Real-time localisation and real-time monitoring and of first responder team member is vital for the safety of first responders in alerting each other of near potential hazard.
The second challenge is in the preparatory face of first responders and the inability to detect of surrounding threats and risks on site of the emergency. According to the project responder study, there is a lack of sensor systems efficiently running in the responder teams. The first responders mainly prepare necessary and required tools and materials for the emergency in the preparation phase.
However, the information setup in this phase is full of fragmentary, incomplete, and sometimes incorrect information. In addition, the situation in the field can rapidly evolve any time, generating new hazards, currently impossible to detect and forecast. For example, a terrorist attack can only be realised after the first responders arrive in the field and rapidly evolving chemical risks cannot be detected and forecasted in the preparation phase.
The third challenge is the simultaneous fusion of information and data from several types of sources should which need to be reliable and in comprehensible user Interfaces.
The main objective of the TeamAware Project is to develop an integrated and cost-efficient situational awareness system for first responders from different sectors with heterogeneous and hardly interoperable sensor units including drone mounted, wearable, and external sensor systems. TeamAware enhances crisis management, flexibility, and reaction capability of first responders from different sectors through real-time, fused, refined, and manageable information by using highly standardised augmented reality and mobile human machine interfaces.
Addressing the first challenge first responders face of localization, TeamAware introduces automated real time indoor localisation systems. A continuous indoor/outdoor localisation system will provide the location of first responders outside, in buildings, above and below the ground in real-time. In addition, a body motion analysing system will provide position and orientation of the responders (e.g., standing still, walking or lying on the ground). Furthermore, a wearable health monitoring system will provide information about the vital activity and status of responders.
Addressing unexpected emergencies on site e.g. chemical terrorist attack, TeamAware provides various types of sensors systems to detect, identify and monitor threats for responders.
Addressing the challenge fusion of overwhelming amount of information and data from various sources, TeamAware, utilizes Artificial Intelligence (AI) to detect, identify and classify the threats and anomalies surrounding the first responders. The sensors systems in the field will aid the first responders by generating fused information and providing a detail picture for the dispatchers in the Incident Management Centre.
In addition to sensors systems further information is obtained by social medial, citizens that are in near proximity of the incident, as well as IoT infrastructure of the city. All kind of information are connected with a redundant communication network (refer to White Paper 9).
By providing user interfaces (UIs) enhanced with Augmented Reality (AR), TeamAware presents refined information to the responders. This gap is fulfilled by Human Machine Interface (HMI) displaying refined, filtered, and manageable common situational awareness.