↑ Return to Objective and Targets


The quick and continuous monitoring of a disaster site is very important not only in lifesaving but also in protecting the rescuers themselves from any further disaster. According to fire-fighting personnel, most of the monitoring mentioned above is currently conducted by on-site rescuers taking turns. This often hinders them from focusing on the rescue operations themselves and introduction of a sensor network is one of the effective means to solve this problem. However, the main function of a conventional sensor network is to transmit sensing data in a prescribed form or accumulate it in a data logger or its equivalent. Therefore, the amount of sensing data in wide-area monitoring quickly becomes immense and it may soon be difficult to accurately acquire desired information. This research creates (I) a system construction technology with a function that will, when a user inquires of the large-scale sensor network system that consists of two or more wireless sensor networks as to desired information (demand), transmit this demand to the sensor or local database (DB) that holds the desired sensing data (addressing), and return this sensing data in real time from there. It also has a function that mashes up this sensing data with any other helpful information obtained from other fire-fighting and disaster-prevention systems in the network and enables the user’s terminal to display it in real time, and (II) an environmentally adaptive wireless sensor network construction technology. This consists of sensor nodes with an environmental adaptability function that considers surroundings and user-issued demands and then dynamically changes their respective roles to acquire the desired sensing data. For example, in a wide-area sensor network constructed with this technology, if a user made an inquiry for “the possibility of a fire outbreak within a 10 km radius of this location,” a data acquisition demand will be sent to temperature sensors that have detected high temperatures within a 10 km radius. The temperature information and alerts acquired from these sensors will be mapped and displayed on the user’s terminal.
Moreover, if a sensor node equipped with a temperature sensor is playing another role in a specific wireless sensor network, such as data relay, the temperature sensing function of that sensor will be automatically triggered and return the measurement to the user. Furthermore, if information is taken from the communication system among rescuers, it will also be possible to display the current position of each rescuer on the same screen.
Another example would be that if a user makes an inquiry for “the possibility of a fire within two days and within a 5 km radius to the north of this location,” the demand will be sent to local DBs within a 5 km radius to the north that have accumulated temperature information. Records of high temperatures, indicating the possibility of a fire within two days, and the time of observation, will be returned from the specified area.
As mentioned above, this research intends to establish a wide-area sensor network construction technology that accesses suitable resources according to the user’s demand and, if necessary, changes even the roles of sensor nodes to acquire the desired data actively.