Insitu, FireWhat and Esri enter partnership
Insitu has teamed with FireWhat and Esri to improve UAS-based wildfire fighting capability services, the company announced on 10 August.
Insitu's INEXA Solutions will offer aerial reconnaissance for fighting wildfires with a package comprised of the ScanEagle UAS carrying payloads including the new High Accuracy Photogrammetry payload; and FireWhat's geographic information system (GIS) customised for firefighters and hosted on Esri's ArcGIS platform.
Wildfires are currently battled using fire line information that can be up to 24 hours old. This new teaming will offer Insitu's ScanEagle UAS to ‘fly the gaps’, using EO/IR camera payloads for day and night imaging. This will provide previously unavailable data collection, analysis, and delivery of decision-making information to manned firefighting fleets operating in difficult terrain, smoke, or temperature inversion situations.
Integrating Insitu's aerial remote sensor imagery with FireWhat's GIS will provide near-real time live, web-based video feed of thermal images to FireWhat's ground-based mobile command centres. The IR/thermal camera technology penetrates smoke or darkness, gathering and disseminating georeferenced still images of points of interest, and allows FireWhat's data to quickly create geo-referenced high-resolution mosaics in PDF, and digital fire progression/suppression maps.
The aim is to combine these technologies to dramatically increase strategic and tactical awareness and decision-making for firefighters and first responders.
Jon Damush, vice president and general manager, Insitu Commercial, said: ‘This is a revolutionary breakthrough in firefighting, as the typical 12-to-24 hours of critical information lag time during darkness or in smokey conditions is eliminated. Combining INEXA Solutions' integrated imagery with FireWhat's solution that incorporates Esri's ArcGIS creates a 'best of breed' solution that will enable firefighters to quickly determine the best possible actions to take through GIS mapping.’
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