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UAV Works goes on with ETHON-2 project

ETHON-2 aims to develop an emergency management platform focused on the extinction of forest fires, where drones, sensors and their communications will be linked, concentrating the information in a single point of view, to be used by the post command in emergency management.

The integrated system will make possible to link all the physical devices used with a digital environment (communications and software) to improve the processes for obtaining information in emergency situations and forest fire extinguishing work.

The five main subsystems are developed by each of the participating companies:

  • Management Platform and Visualisation Interface (ETRA)
  • UAVs and integration of on-board systems and payloads (UAV Works)
  • Sensors I: Advanced Ground Sensors (PYRO)
  • Sensors II: applied thermography (ETRA)
  • Communications (ETRA)

Each of the subsystems will be developed with innovative technologies that are at the level of the state of the art. Specifically, ETRA will guarantee the exchange of information between subsystems in hostile environments, where coverage is limited, thanks to the deployment of a local communications network and the establishment of reliable communications. ETRA will provide the emergency services with a monitoring web interface where they can view the sent data, in an intuitive and friendly way, to facilitate fire management. This will include functionalities such as the visualization of images from cameras, sensors, geolocation and generation of orthomosaics.

The VALAQ series developed by UAV Works are the UAV designed and built to offer flight times of up to 2h as well as action ranges of up to 100 km radius while allowing quick takeoffs and landings without the need for runways or auxiliary elements thanks to their VTOL technology . In addition, the integration of communication systems with both 4G technology and other long-range point-to-point communication links make them a versatile platform that is easily integrated in this type of operation.

The sensors developed by PYRO together with its automated dispenser, allow the rapid installation of a sensors network on the fire scene. These sensors, weighing only 60 grams, will be launched from the VALAQ aircraft at the strategic points of the fire, taking data on temperature, humidity, gases and automatically generating fire alerts. All this information obtained in real time, will allow the emergency bodies to have the best possible information when making quick, safe and effective taking decisions during the extinction of the forest fire.

The development and use of advanced technologies together with the non-loss of information collected during the flight phases has been the fundamental maxim throughout the ETHON-2 project.

The simultaneous integration of the UAV subsystems and sensors will allow to provide an aerial observation platform at medium altitude and with high autonomy for the management of forest fires, with the ability to detect hot spots in the area affected by the fire, delimitation of the perimeter and dissemination of control beacons.

Finally, in order all the system created can be properly and efficiently manage, the instructions, protocols, profile missions and doctrines of use of it will be defined by experts in management and operational systems in forest fires.

In this way, ETHON-2 will respond to the demands of the Special Plan against the risk of forest fires, boosted by the regional government of Valencia (Comunidad Valenciana) al director del Puesto de Mando Avanzado (PMA).

Ethon-2 is co-funded by the Agència Valenciana de la Innovació (AVI) within the program "Consolidation of the business value chain" of the 2019-2020 call (Exp INNCAD / 2020/12) and its duration will be 16 months (September 2020 - December 2021).

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