HazCommand: HazMat Incident Command Training

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1R43ES013908-01
Agency Tracking Number: ES013908
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2005
Solicitation Year: 2005
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: PHS2005-2
Small Business Information
AMETHYST RESEARCH, LLC
Amethyst Research, Llc, 221 Headhouse Ct, Philadelphia, PA, 19147
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 JONATHAN KAYE
 (215) 627-8146
 JMK@AMETHYST-RESEARCH.COM
Business Contact
Phone: (215) 627-8146
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): HazCommand is a new multi-user software training environment for the HazMat domain that enables much needed practice for command and control, one of the most important elements in determining the success or failure of emergency response. Amethyst Research proposes to build a software product based on an existing research prototype, and to evaluate its impact on training programs within the Philadelphia Fire Department. Instructors log into the web software and select a scenario. Participants log into the virtual session and see visual and animated representations of the scene, and can navigate independently around the scene to accomplish the given tasks. The flexible architecture, based on Macromedia Flash, allows trainers of all skill levels to rapidly create realistic scenarios. The Phase I hypothesis is that learning occurs during a computer-based drill that transfers to performance improvement in a live-action drill. The challenge is to conduct a suitable experiment that shows whether or not a group that participates in a computer-simulated drill followed by the live-action drill will perform better than a control group that experiences only the live-action drill. The objectives are to, 1) complete the generalized infrastructure of the product; 2) use the technology to develop one HazMat scenario based on alive-action drill scenario; 3) conduct experiments using the live-action drill and using the computer-based drill followed by the live-action drill, and 4) compare learner performance results between those experiments. If the hypothesis is proven true, research in Phase II will tackle the ultimate goals of demonstrating that this technology reduces training costs and time, so as to allow for more frequent training, improve performance in live-action drills and, by extension, real life incidents, and enable reliable evaluation of command skills in scenarios that otherwise would be impossible to conduct in a live setting.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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