Date of Original Version

April 2011

Type

Article

Abstract or Table of Contents

Indoor emergency response situations, such as urban fire, are characterized by dangerous constantly-changing operating environments with little access to situational information for first responders. In-situ information about the conditions, such as the extent and evolution of an indoor fire, can augment rescue efforts and reduce risk to emergency personnel. Static sensor networks that are pre-deployed or manually deployed have been proposed, but are less practical due to need for large infrastructure, lack of adaptivity and limited coverage. Controlled-mobility in sensor networks, i.e. the capability of nodes to move as per network needs can provide the desired autonomy to overcome these limitations.

In this paper, we present SensorFly, a controlled-mobile aerial sensor network platform for indoor emergency response application. The miniature, low-cost sensor platform has capabilities to self deploy, achieve 3-D sensing, and adapt to node and network disruptions in harsh environments. We describe hardware design trade-offs, the software architecture, and the implementation that enables limited-capability nodes to collectively achieve application goals. Through the indoor fire monitoring application scenario we validate that the platform can achieve coverage and sensing accuracy that matches or exceeds static sensor networks and provide higher adaptability and autonomy.

 
 

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