Funding received to develop unmanned search and rescue systems first responders

Mantaro Networks, Inc. and Beeper Communications Israel have formally received funding from The BIRD Foundation, to support their development of Unmanned Search and Rescue Systems (USRS), the companies said.

The joint project aims to fill in “capability gaps” for first responders, as identified by Homeland Security and supported by the National Technology Plan for Emergency Response to Catastrophic Incidents. Project USRS has been awarded USD 900K in funding over an 18 month time-frame.

The companies state that a significant development of USRS will be the ability of autonomous operation of robotic unmanned devices and their cooperative action with First Responders, supported by broadband and resilient communication network.

The project proposes new methods and algorithms for distributed-decentralised command and control of First responder teams and autonomous robots. The effective operation of autonomous robot will be enabled by communication infastructure setup by Beeper.

The successful completion of this project will produce wireless broadband infrastructure – the means to transfer large amounts of data utilizing a full spectrum of communication frequences and optimisation algorithms. This high-bandwidth connectivity will enable easily exchange media-rich information with first responders teams at field and autonomous robots for remote monitoring of incident landscape in real time and FR progress status.

Technically USRS will create the most effective and detailed Common Operational Picture (COP) for the responding agencies. The data from the field will be accessible and shared amongst varied agencies and eliminate interoperability challenges that exist currently.