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FP7

SGL FOR USAR Résumé de rapport

Project ID: 217967
Financé au titre de: FP7-SECURITY
Pays: Greece

Final Report Summary - SGL FOR USAR (Second Generation Locator for Urban Search and Rescue Operations)

Executive Summary:

The aim of the project “Second Generation Locator for Urban Search and Rescue Operations” (SGL for USaR, www.sgl-eu.org) is to advance the state-of-the-art in technology for early location of entrapped victims in collapsed buildings. The project addresses EC call of proposals FP-7-SEC-2007-1 (4. Restoring Security and Safety in Case of Crisis / SEC-2007-4.2.-02: ―Integrated Specialist Search and Rescue System). SGL for USaR concept is structured around the development of man-portable devices and network of sensors as resource multipliers and search accelerators that are managed by a field deployable command and control center. The project is based on three pillars; detection and identification of multi-type human signatures in entrapment, integration of multiple sensing elements into operational devices and development of a platform for managing resources and data. The project developed innovative portable devices and probes for locating entrapped victims and continuously monitoring the conditions in the voids. This novel, integrated approach has been organized around multi-sensory localization systems and devices supported by a command and control framework. This framework integrated location and monitoring methods with USaR logistics and management that can support USaR operations in the most reliable, efficient, safe and economic way. The SGL for USaR platform has modular, scalable architecture, enabling evolutionary development and has been designed using an operational approach. This approach allowed for building consensus among relevant stakeholders for systems specifications, ensured end-users involvement, enhanced safety of first responders, allowed familiarization of end-users with complicated systems and focused on addressing critical operational USaR problems.
In the context of the project a number of diversified innovative prototypes, systems and services have been developed. These included an entrapment simulator, an odor simulator, a FIRST responder portable device, an integrated Remote Early Detection System (REDS) for unattended monitoring in the voids, a command and control center (C+C), guidelines for using the devices and relevant applications of disaster medicine. Science and technology research results in the project were the basis for prototypes and systems design and development and future enhancements. The scientific research results include: the identification of chemical human markers of victims originated from breath, urine and sweat, the identification of chemical markers for dead bodies and the correlation of breath analysis with the medical status of victims. The core of technology research results includes development of specific algorithms for alarms, building digital libraries of relevant sounds and images and providing solutions for wireless communication from inside and around the collapsed structure. Beyond science and technology, the project has addressed different types of ethical problems related with the USaR operations such as that of rescuing vulnerable people. The project has launched and continues to operate a technology forum that is a web discussion platform for providing answers in critical USaR technology problems (http://tech-forum.sgl-eu.org).

Project Context and Objectives:
The Second Generation Locator for Urban Search and Rescue Operations (SGL for USaR, http://www.sgl-eu.org) is a mission-oriented project, with the aim of advancing current state-of-the-art technologies for the early detection and location of entrapped people following building collapse. The project sought to overcome prevailing operational and technological limitations in urban search and rescue operations by pursuing: a holistic solution, a multi-disciplinary approach, detection and identification of audio, video and chemical signatures of entrapped victims, integration of multi-sensing elements into operational devices, development of a platform for managing resources and data. The integrated system architecture provided a framework for augmenting the effectiveness of the system; providing real-time, accurate information to the end user. The project considered the development of innovative portable devices and probes, for location of victims and continuous monitoring of conditions in the voids within the collapsed building.
The principal objectives of SGL for USaR at the outset were:
- The use of video images, sound signatures, chemical signatures (markers), spectral analysis, data fusion and wireless communication to develop integrated, stand-alone early location devices for entrapped people and dead bodies.
- The use of the same devices for monitoring and identifying hazardous conditions in the voids of collapsed buildings due to structural damage, flaming or smoldering fires and released gases.
- To develop integrated remote early location and monitoring systems for localization purposes based on the deployment of networks of sensors.
- To integrate the early location and monitoring systems with communication and information management applications that can provide multi-level processing and data fusion, supporting relevant USaR services and logistics (medical support, mobilization, tools, transportations, communications).
SGL for USaR concept is structured around the development of man-portable devices and network of sensors as resource multipliers and search accelerators that are managed by a field deployable command and control center; it provides a holistic solution to the early location of entrapped people following building collapse. The multi-disciplinary approach adopted in SGL for USaR required to realign the various scientific and technological disciplines in fewer number of research lines in a mission-oriented type of work. The project is based on three pillars; detection and identification of multi-type human signatures in entrapment, integration of multi-sensing elements into operational devices and development of a platform for managing resources and data.
A principal scientific objective was the establishment of a suite of human signatures, encompassing chemical, audio and visual data. Elucidation of signatures of human presence would provide for the development of algorithms for automated detection and location of victims, and for the integration of alarms into the software architecture. To elucidate such signatures, both laboratory-based and field-based research was conducted, which focused on simulating conditions of entrapment within collapsed structures. A landmark study for the project was the development of a laboratory-based simulator (environmental simulator) for identifying volatile chemical compounds indicative of human metabolic profiles, released from breath and sweat. The environmental simulator investigated the dynamics of the evolution of the volatile plume through collapsed building material. Further chemical research studies were conducted throughout the project, investigating human metabolic profiles in sweat, breath and urine matrices. Field-based studies sought to elucidate chemical compounds related to decaying bodies by utilizing pig carcasses as surrogate dead bodies. The research enabled suites of chemical indicators to be identified and quantified, which would serve as target compounds in field trials, commensurate with alarm indications for the rescuers. Next to environmental simulator, an odor simulator was developed with the scope of producing artificial odors relevant to the project for use in different sets of experiments in the lab and in the field.
A further scientific research line was the pursuance of non-invasive methods for medical diagnostics, such that the medical status of entrapped victims could be determined and monitored from remote locations. The target was to establish relationships between the medical status of the victim and chemicals emanating from the products of metabolism of the entrapped human.
The integration of sensors determined from the scientific research into functional prototypes formed the technological backbone of the project. The objectives for integrating these technologies included developing communication between the sensors as a single network, in addition to establishing a graphical user interface platform. Creating an ergonomically astute graphical user interface required the fusion of data types from chemical, audio and visual sources into a single screen output. An objective for achieving these goals was set around novel software development for transferring the system data in a non-homogenous space with high dimensionality. The development of algorithms for data processing and alarms completed the picture for enhancing the system.
Two tangible prototypes were developed under the framework of this multi-sensing elements integration. A stand-alone, portable, self-powered device, termed “FIRST” which enabled detection and location capabilities from chemical, audio and visual stimuli. The device employed new-generation ion mobility spectrometer technology for victim and hazardous conditions detection.
A further prototype, termed the “remote early detection system (REDS)”, was designed and developed for the purpose of continuous situational awareness monitoring at specific locations in the disaster scene. REDS is used for unattended monitoring and becomes a human resource multiplier. This technology contained autonomous operation and wireless communication capabilities, with the principal objectives of supporting rescuer safety by identifying potential risks in the operational area, as well as, signs of life.
A command and control (C&C) operational center was constructed for the purpose of management of wireless communications and logistics of the operations. This is a framework platform for planning, search and rescue and for receiving wireless data and info from FIRST and REDS. Located remotely from the disaster scene, the linking of devices for information and communication management allows the operational aspects of the search and rescue to be managed. This framework platform of integrated location and monitoring methods with USaR logistics and management can support USaR operations in the most reliable, efficient, safe and economic way. The SGL for USaR platform has modular, scalable architecture, enabling evolutionary development and has been designed using an operational approach. This approach allowed for building consensus among relevant stakeholders for systems specifications, ensured end-users involvement, enhanced safety of first responders, allowed familiarization of end-users with complicated systems and focused on addressing critical operational USaR problems.
Beyond science and technology, the project has addressed numerous types of ethical problems related with the USaR operations such as that of rescuing vulnerable people. The project has launched and continues to operate a technology forum that is a web discussion platform for providing answers in critical USaR operational problems (http://tech-forum.sgl-eu.org).

Project Results:
General
SGL for USaR has delivered tangible prototypes such as:
• An environmental chamber; Entrapment simulator for performing experiments for identifying and establishing chemical human signatures in entrapment
• Odor simulator; Device for preparing transient close of odors relevant to the project that can be used for training purposes and for testing chemical instrumentation developed in the project
• FIRST; Man portable device for locating entrapped victims and for detecting and identifying hazardous conditions
• REDS; Network of sensors for unattended monitoring life signs and hazardous conditions in collapsed buildings
• C&C; Command and Control Center for managing resources and data from FIRST and REDS.
Next to these prototypes the project delivers the following scientific and technology results:
• Profiles and patterns of chemical human markers of human presence in entrapment; Detected and identified in lab and field experiments these chemical markers originate from breath, urine and sweat of entrapped victims
• Profiles and patterns of Chemical human markers of dead bodies; Detected and identified in lab and field experiments using pig carcasses as surrogate dead bodies
• Integration of chemical, audio and video signals for detection of smoldering fires in collapsed buildings
• Non-invasive medical methods for monitoring medical status of victims; Breath analysis is correlated with vital signs with the scope of establishing on-site diagnostics for medical status of victims
• Digital libraries of audio and video images of entrapped victims; developed experimentally they include human postures in entrapment and relevant sounds from different depths and through different materials. They are used for training purposes and for image and sound recognition
• Development of special alarm modules based on image, acoustic and chemical analysis.
Furthermore, bioethics in USaR has been analyzed through and emphasis was given in search and rescue of vulnerable people; successful approaches have been presented and gaps in relevant technology and procedures have been proposed with the scope of developing a roadmap for future research.
Finally, a technology forum has been launched and continuous to run; relevant stakeholders use it as a discussion platform on critical technology problems in USaR operations.
In the following sections prototypes and other scientific and technology results are presented in more details

Man portable device for locating entrapped victims (FIRST)
In most cases of collapsed buildings due to earthquakes, technical failures, explosions or fires, there is need to locate entrapped victims. According to national or international organizations, rescue teams arriving at the scene need to do the following standard procedures:
• Plan search and rescue operations/make update for situation awareness.
• Prioritize buildings for the highest possibility of having survivors
• Conduct fast search in a broad area for finding indications of entrapped victims
• Conduct lengthy (in depth) searches in individual voids
• Locate the exact position of the victim
• Mark victims position after location
• Start procedures of extrication
• Make continuous risk assessment for gas leaks, toxics, explosive atmospheres; monitoring CO and O2 levels
• Make assessment of further building structure stability
FIRST is a search device with the capability of supporting all the above procedures. So far, Urban Search and Rescue procedures employ individual search devices such as cameras, microphones and chemical monitors for running operations. For the first time a man-portable search device (FIRST) combines most popular search methods for use them in all the above standard procedures.
FIRST is a man portable device that can be carried by the rescuer with the scope of locating entrapped victims or dead bodies and for monitoring hazardous conditions in collapsed buildings.
The integrated multi-sensor device consists of two parts; the TUBE and the BACK-PACK. Optical and audio sensors are embedded in the cylindrical TUBE. Thermal and visual (wide angle) cameras with three different illumination LEDs allow for searching day and night. Audio sensors provide two way communication.
The TUBE is equipped with an accelerometer for monitoring the status of the rescuer. The TUBE hosts a smaller diameter “sampling tube” for analysis and monitoring environmental chemicals (CO2, CO, NH3, O2, explosivity, toxics). The TUBE is connected to the BACK-PACK through a flexible cable. Five gas sensors and an Ion Mobility Spectrometer are installed in the BACK-PACK for making possible the chemical detection of victims, dead bodies and hazardous conditions The BACK-PACK is equipped with a ruggedized laptop computer for data analysis and communication capabilities.
FIRST was designed on requirements provided by end users (rescue teams) using system engineering principles. It can be used for:
• Locating trapped victims
• Detect unconscious victims using human scent
• Surveillance and monitoring of confined spaces
• Environmental monitoring of hazardous conditions
FIRST is complimentary to the use of REDS and can communicate with the Command and Control center directly or indirectly through REDS. Users of FIRST include: rescue teams, police, military, fire services, security companies and departments.
Relative publications
P. Mochalski, M. Buszewska, A. Agapiou, M. Statheropoulos, B. Buszewski, A. Amann, “Preliminary investigation of permeation profiles of selected headspace urine volatiles using IMS”, Chromatographia, 2012, 75:41–46.
M. Statheropoulos, K. Mikedi, P. Stavrakakis, A. Agapiou, S. Karma, G. Pallis, A. Pappa, “A preliminary study of combining mass spectrometric data with audio and video signals for real-time monitoring of controlled lab-scale fires”, Sensors and Actuators B 159 (2011) 193– 200.
J. Rudnicka, P. Mochalski, A. Agapiou, M. Statheropoulos, A. Amann, B. Buszewski, “Application of Ion Mobility Spectrometry for the detection of human urine”, Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 398 (2010) 2031-2038.
Statheropoulos M.: First aid, The Parliament Magazine’s Research Review, issue 12, March 2010, pages 44-45.
A. Agapiou, K. Mikedi, G.C. Pallis, S. Gianoukos, A. Pappa, M. Statheropoulos, “FIRST; a multi-sensor portable device for detecting human signatures and hazardous Events”, 20th International Conference On-Site Analysis for Homeland Security, Forensics and Environmental Remediation, January 23-25, 2012, Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.
Aki P. Mäyrä, AgapiosAgapiou, Lars Hildebrand, Kai M. Ojala, KaterinaMikedi, Milt Statheropoulos, “Optical sensors for urban search and rescue operations”, SPIE Security and Defense Conference, 19-22 September 2011, Prague, Czech Republic.
A. Pappa, A. Agapiou, K. Mikedi, S. Karma, G.C. Pallis, M. Statheropoulos, “The potentiality of using IMS in USaR operations”, 20th Annual Conference of Ion Mobility Spectrometer, 24-29/7/2011, Edinburg, Scotland.
M. Statheropoulos, A. Agapiou, K. Mikedi, G.C. Pallis, K. Mikedi, P. Stavrakakis, “Data fusion for monitoring events in collapsed buildings”, 17th International Conference On-Site Analysis for Homeland Security, Forensics and Environmental Remediation, January 25-28, 2009, Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.

Remote Early Detection System (REDS)
REDS is a prototype network of sensors controlled remotely by a ruggedized computer that can be installed in a collapsed building with the scope of unattended monitoring for life signs or hazardous events. REDS is used for:
• General voids or confined spaces monitoring
• Monitoring for life signs or hazardous conditions when initial indications exist
• Electronically marking the position of a found victim
• Remotely monitoring the found victims vital signs
• Monitoring safety conditions during search and extrication
• “Human resources multiplier”, especially, when a limited number of rescue teams exist
The system currently consists of eleven nodes; four fixed (anchors) and seven mobile (probes). The anchors are GPS/LPS nodes and are installed on the four corners of a virtual square with 100m side that surrounds the searching area. The anchors are used for providing the geographical coordinates of probes, rescuers and victims on a map of the disaster area.
The seven probes are: gas sensor system for CO2/CO monitoring, video camera (visual or thermal), audio sensor, vibration sensor, medical locator and the telemedicine probe. On demand, a field portable GC/IMS instrument is used as the seventh probe. The medical locator is a mobile probe that allows for electronic marking of the position of a found victim. The telemedicine probe supports remote monitoring of vital signs of a found entrapped victim. The field portable GC/IMS allows for detection of chemical life signs or toxic compounds. Advanced software allows for data fusion and alarms that automate REDs operation. Wireless data transmission is based on NanoNet technology.
REDS is a new concept in search and rescue operations with additional applications in security, surveillance and monitoring. The system is ideal for surveillance and monitoring of confined spaces/compartments in security applications, fires and gas leaks. The components of the system are light weight, energy autonomous and easy to transport, install and handle. Audio, video, chemical and vibration signals are combined together with positioning and medical data for reliable, safe and fast search and rescue operations. REDS is a “resource multiplier” for:
• Covering different search zones and sectors
• Monitoring single or a group of buildings
• Cases in which intact floors are above a collapsed area and
• Cases in which potential gas leaks or toxic chemical leaks may occur.
Relative publications
Chandrasekhara Bharadwaj Hariharan, Luzia Seifert, Jörg Ingo Baumbach, Wolfgang Vautz, Novel design for drift tubes in ion mobility spectrometry for optimised resolution of peak clusters, Int. J. Ion Mobil. Spec. (2011) 14:31–38.
Chandrasekhara B. Hariharan, Jörg I. Baumbach, Wolfgang Vautz, Linearized Equations for the Reduced Ion Mobilities of Polar Aliphatic Organic Compounds, Anal. Chem. 2010, 82, 427–431.
Statheropoulos M., Sensor network for search and rescue operations in collapsed buildings, ERCIM News, number 81, April 2010, pages 49-50.
Hyung-Won Koh, Lars Hildebrand, Automated gaussian smoothing and peak detection based on repeated averaging and properties of a spectrum’s curvature, E. Hullermeier, R. Kruse, and F. Hoffmann (Eds.): IPMU 2010, Part I, CCIS 80, pp. 376–385, 2010.
Klaus M. Känsälä, Aki Mäyrä, “A versatile sensor network for urban search and rescue operations”, SPIE Security and Defense Conference, 19-22 September 2011, Prague, Czech Republic.
M. Statheropoulos, A. Agapiou, K. Mikedi, G.C. Pallis, K. Mikedi, P. Stavrakakis, “Data fusion for monitoring events in collapsed buildings”, 17th International Conference On-Site Analysis for Homeland Security, Forensics and Environmental Remediation, January 25-28, 2009, Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.

Command and Control Center (C&C)
Urban Search and Rescue (USaR) teams according to “INSARAG guidelines and methodology” should be comprised of the following components: Management, Logistics, Search, Rescue and Medical. More generally, the USaR team is structured around the management and the operational components. The management component refers to the safety and security, information and planning, coordination and public information functions. The operational component includes site assessments, search, rescue and medical care. In addition, it does HAZMAT monitoring, structural stability evaluation and coordination of heavy lifting operations.
The Command and Control Center (C&C) serves as an integrated platform enabling team management and operational functions in the field. C&C is a cubic, metallic, mobile structure that stands on a hydraulic system and is equipped with all necessary H/W and S/W. The hydraulic system is designed to lift the structure over its legs, facilitating the set-up operations and the leveling of the system.
On the outside the structure carries telescopic masts, two cameras and photovoltaic panels. The telescopic masts host the meteorological sensors and communication antennas. A pan and tilt platform host a standard color camera and a low light Near Infrared black and white camera. The platform can move both cameras to focus at the same target, at the same time. The photovoltaic panels are mounted on the walls of the structure.
The C&C can, easily, be transferred to the urban disaster environment for team and operational management. It performs the following functions:
• Establishes communications with the outside world and internally (among team members)
• Provides generic camera overview of the disaster scene
• Provides meteorological data recorded on site
• Supports liaison with headquarters or other entities
•Facilitates meetings, documentation of events, preparation of reports and development of action plans
• Allows developing assessments on building triage, risks and hazardous conditions
• Receives input from FIRST
• Receives input from REDS nodes and probes and makes alarms
• Coordinates heavily lifting of objects
• Allows for positioning personnel and victims when found
• Supports logistic supply
• Receives medical information of victims during or after extrication

Environmental Test Chamber
The Environmental Test Chamber is a simulator of a collapsed building and enables controlled and reproducible sampling and monitoring of chemical plumes of entrapped people. The provision of safe and ethical experimental conditions for volunteer participants, and research staff, is considered an important element towards this effort. A range of environmental conditions to simulate building collapses in different climates and seasons can be generated. Three sub-systems are used: an environmental-chamber; a void-simulator; and, a collapsed-building-simulator. The environmental-chamber provides a buffer reservoir of purified air at a specified humidity that is supplied to the void-simulator. The void-simulator is large enough for above-average size adult (120 kg and 2 m) to lie in. Air is passed through the void-simulator from the environmental-chamber and into the collapsed-building-simulator. The collapsed-building-simulator presents the generic elements of a collapsed building. It represents a structural collapse of a reinforced concrete and glass structure, and contained sampling and monitoring systems at different points within the layers of the building material debris.
Relative publications
R Huo, A. Agapiou, V Bocos-Bintintan, L. Brown, C Burns, C S Creaser, N. Davenport, B Gao-Lau, C Guallar-Hoyas, L Hildebrand, A Malkar, H Martin, V H Moll, P Patel, A Ratiu, James C Reynolds, S Sielmann, R Slodzynski, M Statheropoulos, M Turner, W Vautz, V Wright, Paul Thomas, “The Trapped Human Experiment”, Journal of Breath Research 5 (2011) 046006.

Odor Simulator
The Chemical Environment Simulator or Odor Simulator enables a combination of several particular vapour chambers each one with a separate flow controller to obtain complex mixtures in the low ppb range and with dynamically changing concentration pattern. The dynamic module was validated successfully in the lab using IMS and PS-MS analytical instruments, as well as, in field tests engaging canines for identifying synthetic mixtures of human sweat, urine and early decay. Through the production of synthetic odors a better understanding of how canines pick up and track odors is given.

Non-invasive medical methods in SGL for USaR
In SGL for USaR project, a medical theory of entrapment in confined spaces has been attempted including information on crush syndrome and ammonia neurotoxicity; the enormous importance of dialysis-capacity after earthquakes was also noted. An effort on correlating expired air VOCs with crucial medical parameters (ECG, cardiac output, alveolar minute ventilation) has been examined. Chemometrics were applied for highlighting hidden correlations. The practical scope of this effort was to monitor vital signs of victims through VOCs monitoring (non-invasive on-site assessment). As a first step, acetone and isoprene were monitored on-line in simulating experiments and work with cycling and sleeping volunteers was performed.
Human vital parameters include among others heart rate, respiration rate, skin temperature and full ECG. These parameters related with vital signs of entrapped victim are important and can provide information on victim physiological state.It is known that after victim location in USaR operations in collapsed structures, it needs time for access the victim and for recovery. The procedure of extrication is usually time-consuming and during that time, there is need for continuous monitoring of victim medical status and for providing medical and psychological support; treatment and even operations are not excluded.Consequently, development of non-invasive on-site diagnostics becomes an important research area in USaR operations.
Relative publications
Kolostoumbis, C. Papageorgiou, E. Zorba, C. Spiliopoulou, A. Amann, M. Statheropoulos, “Physiology and biochemistry of human subjects under entrapment”, Journal of Breath Research 7 (2013). In press.
M. Statheropoulos, A. Agapiou, G.C. Pallis, S. Karma, K. Mikedi, “Modelling entrapment in collapsed buildings: expired air analysis”, Breath 2009: International Conference on Breath and Breath Odour Research, April 26-30, 2009, Dortmund, Germany.
J King, A Kupferthaler, K Unterkofler, H Koc, S Teschl, G Teschl,WMiekisch, J Schubert, H Hinterhuber, A Amann, Isoprene and acetone concentration profiles during exercise on an ergometer, J. Breath Res. 3 (2009) 027006.

Alarms
The Alarm module for FIRST, REDs and C&C included alarms for victim location, as well as for dangers detection of the entrapment environment (fire, explosivity, toxic substances).The development of the corresponding heterogeneous alarm system has been required to adopt a multi-disciplinary data-fusion approach where different system layers, views and issues were addressed jointly. Main considered factors were: signal acquisition and conditioning, extraction of main features and relevant context information, information enhancement, automatic and human interpretation of available information, information coding and transmission, networking aspects, database management, mobility aspects and multimodal Human-system Interfaces based on User-centered Design and Human Factors Engineering.
From the point of USaR operations, main alarm concepts and principles were reviewed from mature available standards such as EEMUA 191 and ISA-18.2. In SGL for USaR project the alarm management lifecycle from ISA 18.2 was considered a valuable reference standard for the corresponding development and operation of the alarm system. This lifecycle includes the following phases: Alarm Philosophy, Identification, Rationalization, Detailed Design, Implementation, Operation, Maintenance, Monitoring and Assessment, Management of Change, and Audit.
The alarm module was explicitly designed to take account of human factors and practical limitations in USaR operations.
The established basic alarm categorization was based in two main criteria:
• Detection purpose: (signs-of-life features and safety features)
• Signal type: (chemical and environmental signals, audio signals and video signals)
The most relevant innovation of SGL for USaR project was the advanced sampling, characterization and analysis of chemical signals for the corresponding USaR operations. Sound and video (VIS and IR) signals were mainly used to complemented and improve the corresponding data fusion process for the involved rescue operations. The basic system in SGL for USaR project included the following basic process: signal acquisition, filtering, features extraction, features analysis and alarm detection.
For the final deployment of the corresponding alarm system in complex USaR scenarios it should be convenient to include some complementary processes such as: alarm suppression, alarm shelving, alarm eclipsing, etc.
The basic data structure of the alarm system was based on following level structure [Dasarathy's functional model for data fusion]:
• Data (signal)
• Feature
• Decision (alarm)
The risk of the corresponding USaR alarms were mainly analyzed based on three parameters: evidence of the corresponding feature, severity and urgency. Some main features considered to be signs-of-life were: hypothermia, sign of Breath, frostbite condition, survival probability, consciousness, urine detection, sign of dead victim, etc. Some main features associated to safety were: explosivity condition and dangerous or lethal atmosphere.
The corresponding data-fusion process was mainly based on fuzzy rules specified by the experts and also derived from the experiments carried out during the project: THE, DARK, and INTERACTION experiments.
Specific robust alarm algorithms have been also developed for the IMS systems used in this project, and for the corresponding analysis of video and sound signals.
The alarm system evolution for USaR operations was finally considered. Some important factors that decision-makers should bear in mind when devising an integrated technological strategy for implementation are:
• Realize that every technology is susceptible to a certain level of risk.
• Consider the reliability, robustness and availability of systems and devices used.
• Scalability and standardization are significant areas that must be explored.
• Interoperability, application integration and investment protection must be considered
• Devices must also be carefully chosen with an eye to current, and future, needs.
• Understand the limitations of the selected solutions for the organization processes.
• Consider self-contained and predictable power management for wireless deployments
• Expectations of sensor devices must be realistically managed
• Moving from a prototype to a working model can be a journey of unknown length
• Consider the whole system to plan the corresponding evolution.

Chemical Signatures in entrapment: THE, INTERACTION, DARK and lab-scale fire Experiments
A preeminent focus for the research in SGL for USaR was the elucidation of chemical marker compounds which could be defined as positive indicators of human presence and decay. Voluminous research studies were undertaken throughout the course of the project to determine chemical marker compounds emanating from human breath, sweat, urine and decaying body. The studies utilized the multifarious expertise of the chemical partners in the project to devise and test methods for enabling chemical indicators to be separated, identified and quantified, using both laboratory-based and field-based means.
In a landmark study for SGL for USaR, a simulated collapsed building was constructed for the purpose of establishing the evolution, identity and dynamics of evolved human chemical signatures, as they permeated through the building material. The work was executed under laboratory conditions and acceded to stringent guidelines on health, safety and ethics. An array of detection technologies were employed for monitoring the evolved signatures at different depths of entrapment; encompassing aspiration IMS (AIMS), differential mobility spectrometry (DMS), gas chromatography-ion mobility spectrometry (GC-IMS), the prototype remote early detection system (REDS) and thermal desorption for subsequent gold-standard gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS).
The voluminous data obtained from the study determined ammonia, isoprene and acetone as ubiquitous indicators of human presence. 12 VOCs, comprising five aldehyde compounds, two alcohols, two ketones, and three hydrocarbons, were also resolved and detected using GC-IMS on-line analysis. Subsequent validation studies identified these compounds as further chemical indicators of human presence, which may be reliably detected from just 30 minutes after the point of first entrapment. Multivariate analysis (orthogonal partial least squares-discriminant analysis) obtained from AIMS measurement demonstrated the potential for this technology to distinguish between a blank chamber and a simulator containing a trapped human, with 89% specificity at a sampling depth of 2.7 metres. The multivariate data could also be used to distinguish between body mass, which could prove to be a beneficial finding for future victim extrication. High detection sensitivities of IMS to acetone and ammonia were observed during the experiments. Limits of detection were routinely <100 ppt for ammonia, demonstrating the applicability of IMS for rapid diagnosis of human presence in future search and rescue operations. Quantitative data obtained from the study informed the alarm threshold levels in the prototype man-portable device (FIRST). CO2 concentrations inside the collapsed building routinely increased to >3000 ppm(v) after 30 minutes of entrapment; electrochemical sensors were employed for continuous measurements and monitoring of the CO2 concentration, which informed the future alarm thresholds for FIRST. Analogous work was achieved with CO, NH3, O2 and VOCs, as detected by AIMS. The study, termed “the trapped human experiment (THE)” is the first of its kind focusing on human chemical evolution profiling in collapsed structures.
Human urine is considered an abundant source of VOCs in humans and hence was studied thoroughly in SGL for USaR for its use as a medium for human chemical signatures. For the first time, the SGL for USaR tackled the challenges of applying established analytical methodology for the application of developing credible chemical signatures of human presence from untreated urine samples. Substantial novel work has been carried out in the project to characterize a suite of potential indicators, both qualitatively and quantitatively, and to investigate their interactions, in terms of their permeation profiles, through building materials (INTERACTION experiments).
In a preliminary study, headspace solid-phase microextraction-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (HS-SPME-GC-MS) was employed for the purpose of building an initial library of urine indicators in conditions where sample pre-processing stages were avoided. Data from four volunteers yielded a suite of 22 VOCs as potential human urine indicators, of which acetone, 2-butanone, 2-pentanone, 4-heptanone, pyrrole and dimethyl sulfide were omnipresent. An important aspect of the work focused on elucidating the permeation profiles of these VOCs, using a purpose-built filling chamber containing 350g of building debris. The permeation profiles exhibited a general exponential relationship of VOC concentration vs time. Permeation rate constants were also shown to decrease with increasing mass. A follow-on study to this work employed the same experimental methodology to detect and identify VOCs spontaneously evolved from 20 volunteers, after four days’ storage of urine samples at room temperature. The work deduced a set of 33 VOCs with a prevalence rate of at least 80% (10 compounds were ubiquitously present). Further work was carried out to investigate the interaction of these urine indicators with the common building materials of brick and concrete. Ketones were identified as the most promising indicators of human presence in urine, due to their ubiquity, solubility in urine, and their low interaction potentials compared to other urine-borne compounds, including sulfurous moieties.
Although HS-SPME-GC-MS proved to be an adequate detection methodology for selective and sensitive analysis of urine markers, providing detection limits <10 ppb, its application was considered limited in search and rescue operations, where rapid detection is paramount. To substantiate results from the previous studies, multi-capillary column gas chromatography-ion mobility spectrometry (MCC-IMS) was employed to provide rapid (<10 minutes) analysis of untreated urine samples from 30 volunteers. The MCC-IMS methodology was able to detect and resolve 23 of the 33 potential urine VOC indicators (determined from the SPME-GS-MS investigations) in standard tests. These 23 compounds served as a reference library for the actual urine studies. 11 of these potential indicators were identified ubiquitously (using the same 80% threshold), of which acetone, 3-methyl-2-butanone, 2-heptanone and octanal were present in all samples. These studies are considered an important advancement in urine indicator analysis in an already well-researched field, as all studies were performed on untreated urine, providing both qualitative and quantitative data. Furthermore, the use of IMS in urine marker identification was a novel research area.
Chemical identification in search and rescue operations must also consider compounds and chemical classes evolved from deceased victims. A significant focus of chemical marker research in SGL for USaR has sought to elucidate signatures related to decay, and to model their evolution behavior in collapsed structures. These studies are also a first of their kind; both laboratory and field-based research has been undertaken in detail during the course of the project. As models of decaying bodies pig carcasses were utilized as surrogate human corpses. The first experimental campaign was undertaken in controlled laboratory conditions. Four pig carcasses were buried with approximately 10 kg of building rubble, containing fragments of cement, brick and soil. The carcasses were enclosed with body bags, providing conditions of minimum aeration, increased humidity and temperature; thereby enabling the accumulation of evolved gases and VOCs, similar to conditions synonymous with collapsed structures. The evolved vapors were sampled using thermal desorption tubes and subsequently analysed using GC-MS. A number of 73 VOCs were concluded to be attributable to indicators of decay from this study.
A field-based follow-on study, termed “Dead Animal Reconnaissance Knack (DARK)” was undertaken in an operational training field. This study built on the previous work to elucidate chemical decay profiles in collapsed structures using an array of detection technologies, encompassing TD-GCxGC-TOF-MS, TD-GC-TOF-MS, MCC-IMS, and electrochemical sensors, in addition to a portable mass spectrometer, containing a pulsed sampling system (PSS-MS). Three pig carcasses were deployed in various configurations within concrete tunnels; one was placed in an open body bag, another in a closed body bag, and a third covered with soil. In total, some 106 VOCs were determined from the study as potential indicators of decay. Importantly for this work, the evolution profiles of VOCs were monitored and elucidated.
From the numerous studies undertaken in SGL for USaR there is extensive evidence of chemical indicators of human presence, which may be detected in VOC plumes. The following specific conclusions can be drawn from the extensive research studies conducted during the project lifetime:
• Acetone, NH3 and CO2 are effective and ubiquitous markers of human presence and these compounds travel rapidly through building debris, to the extent that they may be readily detected within minutes of entrapment
• 2-heptanone, 4-heptanone, 2-butanone, 2-pentanone, pyrrole, propanal and isoprene are also effective markers of human presence
• Isoprene is specific for humans and does not appear in animals
• All aforementioned marker compounds (with the exception of CO2) can be detected by ion mobility spectrometry (IMS)
• The concentration of evolved VOCs, particularly that of ammonia, correlated with the conscious state of the trapped victim
• CO2 concentration within the void simulator built up to an average level of 3-4%
• Interactions of CO2, NH3 and VOCs with water have been observed in several studies. No interactions of isoprene with water have been observed.
• Volatile compounds exhibit vastly different permeation profiles in debris. E.g., 2-heptanone penetrates by a factor of four faster through quartz debris than n-octanal
• 28 VOCs were isolated in void simulator in a preliminary study. Further data processing is underway to determine the exact nature of these species and their rate of incidence
• 33 omnipresent chemical species with incidence over 80% have been proposed as potential urine markers
• Increased evolution of VOCs were observed during 4 days’ storage of urine, probably attributable to urine aging
• A suite of 12 human metabolites have been deduced as chemical indicators of human presence, employing GC-IMS as the detecting methodology in the trapped human experiment. Validation of this suite of indicators has been successful through detecting humans in a room of ~25 m3 after 30 minutes.
• VOCs in urine interact with debris material (longer residence times). Ketones have longer residence times (interact stronger) furans and sulfur - contain substances have lower residence times.
Investigating the contribution of fire events (smoldering fires) to the chemical environment of collapsed buildings, experiments on monitoring of lab-scale fires using chemical, optical and sound sensors were carried out. In this content, controlled, small scale fire experiments were carried out in the laboratory. A commercial Mass Spectrometer coupled with an in-house developed Pulsed Sampling System (PSS), was used for on-line sampling and near real-time monitoring of the evolved volatiles. The profiles of selected ions corresponding to indicative Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) of the fire event, were recorded and compared with the concentration profiles of CO2, CO, O2, NO and H/C (C3H8), acquired by the gas sensors of a commercial exhaust gas analyzer. Audio and video signals were also recorded by a microphone and a visual camera, simultaneously, with PSS-MS data. Two types of fire experiments were performed in order to simulate field conditions: (a) direct fire monitoring, in case of unobstructed direct fire view and (b) indirect fire monitoring through reflection of audio and video signals on metallic surfaces, for simulating obstacles preventing direct fire view. The integration of MS (e.g. hardware, data fusion) with audio and video technologies (sensors that work on different principles) could potentially be the base for the development of reliable unattended systems for the detection, identification, localization and real-time monitoring of hazardous events in the field.
Relative publications
K. Mikedi, P. Stavrakakis, A. Agapiou, K. Moirogiorgou, S. Karma, G.C. Pallis, A. Pappa, M. Statheropoulos, M.E. Zervakis, “Chemical, acoustic and optical response profiling for analysing burning patterns”, Sensors and Actuators B 176 (2013) 290-298
P. Mochalski, K. Krapf, C. Ager, H. Wiesenhofer, A. Agapiou, M. Statheropoulos, D. Fuchs, E. Ellmerer, B. Buszewski, A. Amann, “Temporal profiling of human urine VOCs and its potential role under the ruins of collapsed buildings”, Toxicology Mechanisms and Methods 22(2012) 502-511
PawełMochalski, AgapiosAgapiou, Milt Statheropoulos, Anton Amann, “Permeation profiles of potential urine-born markers of human presence over brick and concrete”, Analyst 2012, 137 (14) 3278-3285.
R Huo, A. Agapiou, V Bocos-Bintintan, L. Brown, C Burns, C S Creaser, N. Davenport, B Gao-Lau, C Guallar-Hoyas, L Hildebrand, A Malkar, H Martin, V H Moll, P Patel, A Ratiu, James C Reynolds, S Sielmann, R Slodzynski, M Statheropoulos, M Turner, W Vautz, V Wright, Paul Thomas, “The Trapped Human Experiment”, Journal of Breath Research 5 (2011) 046006.
M. Statheropoulos, A. Agapiou, E. Zorba, K. Mikedi, S. Karma, G.C. Pallis, C. Eliopoulos, C. Spiliopoulou, “Combined chemical and optical methods for monitoring the early decay stages of surrogate human models”, Forensic Science International 210 (2011) 154-163.

Digital libraries
With the scope of identifying image and real sound life signatures, simulation of different types of entrapment were used for generating in-vivo digital libraries of visual and thermal images, as well as, of real sounds from human participants (volunteers). Image and sound processing algorithms can be supported by using typical images and sound from libraries. Alarms with data handling guidelines activate the whole information system, starting from the FIRST prototype, including the REDS prototype, and finally ending at the C+C system.

Bioethics in SGL for USaR
In SGL for USaR project two major topics of “Ethics in UsaR operations” have been addressed:
a) Priorities in search and rescue operations: Triage and allocation of scare resources and retrieval and response times.
b) Personal data of entrapped people in respect to legislation concerning private data.
These topics were addressed by organizing a workshop (“Human rights in disasters: Search and Rescue Operations in disasters especially for vulnerable people” 5-6 November 2009, Athens, Greece, http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=11%3Ahuman-rights-in-disasters-workshop&Itemid=7) together with Council of Europe (EUR-OPA - European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement) in which ethics were in depth discussed and experiences were exchanged. Additionally, SGL for USaR has contributed in preparing and promoting the work of the Council of Europe on the “Ethical principles on disaster risk reduction and people's resilience” (http://www.sgl-eu.org/images/pdf/Ethique_Text_EUR-OPA_EN.pdf)

Technology Forum
The basic goal of the forum is to become a platform for experience, knowledge and technology know-how exchange for different types of interested parties (operational people, relevant organizations, industry, researchers).
It is meant to be used by project members and external interested parties alike. The cross-pollination in this forum among project members, external experts and general public will inevitably contribute in advancing technology in USaR operations.
Visitors and forum members can stay informed by reading articles written by project members or external experts on multiple areas of the project. Participation in online discussions on issues related with search and rescue operations with affinities to the SGL for USaR project will also be possible and desirable.People are also able to subscribe to digital services such as the electronic version of the project newsletter, participate in polls, etc.
Current discussions are carried out in the following topics:
• Communications in USaR operations
• Benchmarking on tools and technologies
• Priorities in technology developments
• On-going discussion on extrication tools and methods
To register to the technology forum, please visit: http://tech-forum.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_comprofiler&task=registers

Potential Impact:
Despite the heroic efforts of rescuers, USaR operations in collapsed buildings, have a number of weaknesses that need to be improved. Analysis of different cases, as well as, of the different phases of USaR operations reveals opportunities for improvement such as: accelerating the dispatching of resources, doing faster screening of the disaster scene for finding survivors, providing on-site medical support and acceleration of the victims recovery. Technology integration, development of information systems, development of new types of search technologies and better management of resources and logistics can all contribute in succeeding with these opportunities.
α) Community added value and societal impact
Collapsed buildings due to earthquakes, technical failures, explosions and fires, usually, result in loss of human life. This is especially true in case of large scale collapses due to earthquakes. It should be emphasized that massive collapses or collapse of high-rise buildings do not only result in human losses but they also create societal and economic consequences such as the lack of security and safety feeling to the population and breaking of economic activities. The application of better USaR technologies and management practices that have been produced in this project help reducing human losses. SGL for USaR innovative technologies and integration has led to new prototypes and services that allow faster searching for victims with safety for rescuers, better on-site medical monitoring and enhanced collection and management of multi-type of data with the scope of transforming them into information that will allow faster, reliable, safe and effective operations. The project integrated a variety of sensors with the scope of early location of victims, detection of hazardous conditions, carrying out unattended monitoring in the ruins and for improved management of the event.
The community and societal impacts of SGL for USaR are:
• The project has provided to USaR operations efficient, scalable, novel technologies that act as resource multipliers and early location victims accelerators; development of man portable device (FIRST) with multi-type of sensors that combine video, audio, chemical signals for early location of victims and for detection of hazardous conditions and, network of sensors for unattended monitoring in collapsed buildings (REDS). The project has improved the cost-benefit relation of the operations by accelerating critical activities and by using technologies that is “resource multiplier”. European urban search and rescue organizations can be equipped with an array of new technologies for integrating (C&C) early location systems, medical data monitoring, logistics of USaR operations and communication components
• The project has built a European multidisciplinary critical mass of relevant stakeholders that established collaborating relationships for future enhancements and R&D in USaR operations
• The project provides validated technologies that can secure safety of the operations. Monitoring the status of the personnel in each phase of the operations is quite important for the safety of rescuers. Devices developed in SGL for USaR have special sensors that provide the location and status of personnel continuously
• The project defined, developed and tested simple and affordable solutions to provide the responders with effective and interoperable capabilities to increase the performances and to pave the way towards easier collaboration between the agencies and Member States.
• The project has promoted and analyzed experiences of different rescue teams in critical bioethical problems regarding USaR operations and particularly in issues related to USaR operations for vulnerable people. It has proposed a road map for training, technology development and community involvement on how to search and rescue vulnerable people (elderly, children and people with disabilities)
• The project has contributed in enhancing preparedness in earthquake prone countries of Europe. However, examples of recent past have shown that USaR operations in collapsed buildings due to other causes is a common need for all Member States.
b. Contribution to developing S&T co-operation at international level.
Effective international cooperation is an important component in regional and global strategies to improve the management of the disasters. In the past, the exchange of knowledge in effective disaster management, among different countries has been limited. Nowadays, this situation is rapidly changing and there are several multilateral initiatives, for example:
• The establishment of a Working Group on Disasters in 2001 under the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR).
• Council of Europe: Through its EUR-OPA Agreement (Network of Specialized Euro- Mediterranean Centers) and the European Advisory Evaluation Committee for Earthquake Prediction (EAECEP, set up by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe).
• UN-OCHA (United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs)
• INSARAG (International Search and Rescue Advisory Group)
• World Association for Disaster and Emergency Medicine (WADEM)
The SGL for USaR project has close ties and liaise directly with the above mentioned organizations dealing with issues related to Crisis Management. Of special interest was the presentation of the project at the On-Site Annual Meetings for Homeland Security, Forensics, and Environmental Remediation(http://www.ifpac.com/onsite/OnSiteHomePage.html), as well as, in SPIE Defense, Security, and Sensing conferences (http://spie.org/x306.xml?type=all&WT.svl=mddhce).It should be mentioned that SGL for USaR S&T is developed on an operational framework. Therefore, field knowledge and experience were quite important for the development and integration of novel technologies. The project was inspired by operational needs and requirements and has validated the prototypes produced in field scenario-like tests.
c. Contribution to policy design or implementation
Principal objectives of SGL for USaR project are to provide operational procedures harmonization, significantly enhanced safety to rescuers, improved medical support of victims and examine ethics in the operations. SGL for USaR is directly contributed to this goal by a) providing novel technologies that can harmonize procedures contributing in trans boundary cooperation, b) providing road maps for future research in USaR operations c) preparing white papers and policy for how to cope with the search and rescue operations of vulnerable people in disasters.The project has liaised mostly with the Council of Europe by working together with the EUR-OPA on developing policies for a) “Human rights in disasters: Search and Rescue Operations in disasters especially for vulnerable people” and b) “Ethics and Disaster Risk Reduction.”
More specifically, SGL for USaR project has promoted policies for relevant technology development and especially that of security and safety of the operations through organizing relevant workshops and conferences (Technology for Life Conferencehttp://www.sgleu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=32:technology-for-life, Alarms in USaR operations: Technical Aspects workshophttp://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=64) and Caring for Life conference http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=66. In addition the project has promoted these policies by participating in a number of specialized meetings and conferences (“The 2nd International Symposium on Crisis Management, London, UK, 29/3/2012, Pandora Project”, “EU Security Research Workshop, Brussels, Belgium, 30/11/2010”). Guidelines for rescuers, multidisciplinary analysis of the USaR needs and requirements for integrating several technological systems have been produced in the context of the project and was be a major contribution to future EU policies in the field of Security.
d. Provision of appropriate incentives for monitoring and creating jobs in the Community
Since the beginning of the project the SGL for USaR partnership has been generated not only with the aim to cover the technical aspects for the realization of the project outputs, but also to allow the exploitation process that will be actuated at the end of the research phase. The partners presented competences and core business heterogeneous and this will result to the involvement of further European research and industrial networks belonging to each partners for continuing the research investigation and developing the prototypes aiming at creating new jobs in the Community. Through the exploitation of its main products it is expected to create new jobs in manufacturing, sales and market research. Additionally, through its innovation in science and technology (chemical signatures, FIRST, REDS, C&C) new jobs are expected to be created in R&D for further development of innovative products and solutions.

Dissemination
The broad dissemination of the project to relevant organizations (Civil Protections, Fire Brigades, Police, Emergency Health organizations) has been made through the rescue teams that are partners in the project, by inviting end users to attend different field validations and in the final demonstration event, by inviting participants/decision makers in the workshops and conferences organized by the project, by networking with relevant FP7 projects and by partners participation in relevant workshops and conferences. Exploitation activities have been made through the SMEs partners of the project, but also invitation to the industries to participate in the field validations and demonstrations and through visits and presentations to industry premises. Especially, SMEs partners in the project had a very active role in dissemination and exploitation by participating in various exhibitions and conferences.
More specifically, the dissemination plan that was developed included different dissemination tools. In order to enhance publicity, several actions have been carried out:
Publications in printed media in Europe and internationally (http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=42&Itemid=15)
• SGL for USaR in "Kathimerini"
• SGL for USaR in "Eleftheros Typos"
• SGL for USaR in "Wissen in Dortmund"
• SGL for USaR in "Week in Ideas/Ideas Market - Wall Street Journal"
• SGL for USaR in "Australian Geographic"
• SGL for USaR in "Institute of Physics"
• SGL for USaR in "Loughborough University Research Magazine"
• SGL for USaR in "BBC News"
• SGL for USaR in "Vauclusematin"
• SGL for USaR in "Science Media Center"
• SGL for USaR in "Pathfinder"
Presentation on TV
• SGL for USaR in Euronews (FUTURISTM)
• SGL for USaR in TVE, Spain

Project newsletters (http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4&Itemid=5)
• SGL for USaR1st newsletter (October 2008-March 2009)
• SGL for USaR2nd newsletter (April 2009 - September 2009)
• SGL for USaR3rd newsletter (October 2009 - March 2010)
• SGL for USaR4th newsletter (April 2010 - September 2010)
• SGL for USaR5th newsletter (October 2010 - March 2011)
Project brochures (http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3&Itemid=4)
• SGL for USaREC Brochure 1
• SGL for USaREC Brochure 2
• FIRST Brochure
• REDS Brochure
• C&C Brochure
Additionally, the project has presented numerous peer review scientific publications (http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=41&Itemid=14) and presentations in scientific conferences (http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=43&Itemid=16)
The project organized various conferences and workshops in which dissemination activities and exploitation discussions have been carried out:
• Human rights in disasters: Search and Rescue Operations in disasters especially for vulnerable people (5-6 November 2009 Athens, Greece)
• Technology for life (October 10-11 2011 Brignoles, France)
• Caring for Life (25-26 May 2012, Brussels, Belgium)
• Alarms (7-9 June 2012, Syros Island, Greece)
Furthermore, the project was successfully presented in the EC Innovation Convention (5 -6 December 2011, Brussels, Belgium) (http://www.sgl-eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=44)
The project from the very beginning has established its presence on the World Wide Web (http://www.sgl-eu.org). Furthermore, the development of a web platform (Technology Forum, http://tech-forum.sgl-eu.org)served also the project dissemination by providing easy access for broadcasting results and for feedback contact point.The basic goal of the forum was to become a platform for technology experience knowledge and knowhow exchange. The project partners along with the organizations provided the letters of intent (LOI), consisting the initial core of this forum. After launching the forum, European civil protection units, non-government organizations, interested enterprises and relevant research organizations/academics have been asked for further contribution.
Dissemination of results began in the 6th month, to ensure proper feedback from involved actors and to further rise awareness on the importance of the collaboration, coordination and communication among the several centers and specialized companies of the several countries, without forgetting that these dissemination actions are also directed to the citizen awareness, as well as, to obtain the collaboration and contribution of the several administrative organizations which are connected with Security and Civil Protection.

Exploitation
Partners of SGL for USaR project all shared the idea of commercial success of the system and the technologies developed in the project. Most of SGL for USaR partners have interest in the commercial success of the project beyond its lifetime. SGL for USaR delivered tangible deliverables such as novel prototypes. Since the beginning of the project the SGL for USaR partnership has been generated not only with the aim to cover the technical aspects for the realisation of the project outputs, but also to allow the exploitation process will be actuated at the end of the research phase. The partners presented heterogeneous competences and core business and this means the involvement of further European research and industrial networks belonging to each partner for continuing the research and enhancing the prototypes. The consortium has carried outextensive discussions regarding IP Rights (EPO, National Patent Office). In this context, a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) among the SGL for USaR interested partners has been planned for developing groups of partners on specific interest for the exploitation of the prototypes.
Specific exploitation activities have been carried out until the end of the project and more are planned shortly after the end of the project:
Exploitation activities carried out so far include:
• Discussions with industry for conversion of the FIRST prototype into industrial product and commercialization
• Detailed discussions with industry on legal, commercial and technology issues regarding FIRST prototype.
Exploitation activities planned shortly after the end of the project:
• Discussions with industry for conversion of the REDS prototype into industrial product and commercialization
• Discussions with industry for conversion of the C&C prototype into industrial product and commercialization
• Detailed discussions with industry on legal, commercial and technology issues regarding REDS prototype.
• Detailed discussions with industry on legal, commercial and technology issues regarding C&C prototype.

List of Websites:

http://www.sgl-eu.org

Prof. Milt Statheropoulos
Project Coordinator
National Technical University of Athens
School of Chemical Engineering
Tel: +30 210 7723109
email: sgl@chemeng.ntua.gr
http://fiactu.ntua.gr

Informations connexes

Reported by

NATIONAL TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS
Greece

Thèmes

Security