SBIR Phase II: TRX Sentinal First Responder Tracking System
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
TRX SYSTEMS INC
387 Technology Drive, Suite 2104, College Park, MD, 20742
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II project addresses the critical problems of tracking and monitoring firefighters or other first responders inside structures. Whereas many available systems such as GPS fail indoors or require an overwhelming number of access points to obtain accurate information, our system requires only a base station that can be quickly set up at a command post outside (or inside) a building and small devices worn by the responders. Our system sets up a mesh network to communicate data amongst responders, as well as between the responders and the command post base station(s). The mesh network extends the range of the base station by allowing data to be relayed through another team member if a responder goes out of range. Our prototype system has been demonstrated to provide accurate tracking and location of personnel performing simple motions in complex structures from a base station outside of the structure. This project will focus on improving tracking algorithms such that complex motions can be recognized and accurately tracked. The expected outcome of the project is a much improved interface between the typical command center and the first responders. The initial market impacted by this project development is firefighter location and monitoring. Firefighting is one of the most dangerous jobs in the US. An average of 95 firefighters have been lost every year over the past decade. Some of these deaths could have been prevented if only the firefighter's distressed condition and exact position were known. No commercial technology currently exists that pinpoints the location of a downed firefighter. Critical time can be wasted before a downed firefighter is even first detected. Subsequently, critical resources are often diverted in frantic searches in hazardous conditions and extremely poor visibility. The seconds saved by knowledge of firefighter alarms and their positions could mean the difference between minor and severe injuries or death.
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