Pervasive Technologies for The Reduction of Disaster Consequences: Opportunities and Questions

Pervasive Technologies for The Reduction of Disaster Consequences: Opportunities and Questions

Vincenzo Ferrara

Department of Information Engineering, Electronics and Telecommunications (DIET) Sapienza University of Rome, Italy

30 September 2017
| Citation



The paper aims at put in evidence as spreading of a better and efficient technology can decrease the extreme consequences of a disaster in scenarios such as avalanches or collapsed buildings. Therefore, it is an opportunity that increases the probability of successful rescue. At the same time involves questions that may have consequences on the same mode of operation of the measuring instruments, practically by hiding or preventing their capability of detection. A review of detection methods belonging to emerging technology shows these aspects along with the questions that arise. On the other hand, rescuers need specialized instrumentations, which are available to all times, easily accessible and manageable, and that meet stringent requirements in terms of detection accuracy, quick location and reduction of false alarms. An improved technology allows reaching a satisfactory quality level of the detection method, but it must be obtained limiting spending, because a more expensive price generally decreases the availability of that instrumentation for rescuers. This aspect of availability is to be emphasized because it could create delays in the performance of the rescue practices. Recent disasters that occurred in Italian region show this as a critical point. Other important aspects are the manageability and easy operation. In order to solve efficiently the detection, actual systems integrate different techniques, often based on hybrid technologies: electronics, electromagnetics, and so on. These detection systems need an accurate management of single parts and of their mutual interaction. Complexity of technical solution must not get worse the practical use. Moreover, size and weight reduction of electronic components, with which the device is built, increase the transportability of detection system, e.g. on board of an unmanned aerial vehicle. This has consequence on an augmentation of their employment, with the opportunity to use them in scenarios characterized by high-risk rescue operations.


disaster monitoring and mitigation, emergency preparedness, preparedness and training


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