Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Periodic Report Summary 1 - C2-SENSE (Interoperability Profiles for Command/Control Systems and Sensor Systems in Emergency Management)

Project Context and Objectives:
Effective management of emergencies, crises and disasters depends on timely information availability, reliability and intelligibility. To achieve this, many different organizations having different Command and Control (C2) Systems and Sensor Systems have to cooperate and this cooperation would only be possible through interoperability.

However, unless standards and well-defined specifications are used, the interoperability of these systems can be quite challenging, technologically complex, time consuming and expensive.
To address this challenge, in C2-SENSE Project, a “Profiling” approach will be used to achieve seamless interoperability by addressing all the layers of the communication stack in the security field. In this respect, C2-SENSE project's main objective is to develop a profile based Emergency Interoperability Framework by the use of existing standards and semantically enriched Web services, which will expose the functionalities of C2 Systems, Sensor Systems and other emergency/crisis management systems.
The Emergency Interoperability Framework will be developed in three steps:
(1) First, an Emergency Domain Inventory will be created by surveying existing standards, real life use cases of sensors, devices, C2 systems and emergency management architectures for different scenarios in security field.
(2) After that based on this inventory a common and modular Emergency Domain Ontology will be developed to gather all stakeholders' knowledge in a unique and flexible data model.
(3) Finally, by using the concepts in this ontology, by also taking into account both functional and operational requirements as well as different countries' cultural, linguistic and legal issues, Emergency Interoperability Profiles that will constitute the framework will be developed. These Emergency Interoperability Profiles will enable effective exchange of information among different rescue units, public safety units and information systems without requiring any special technical a priori arrangements even for the international relief operations.

Furthermore, necessary standardization activities will be initiated to evolve C2-SENSE Emergency Interoperability Framework into a standard specification for interoperability between Sensor Systems and C2 Systems, with the aim of helping the development of a European market in this field. Additionally, C2-SENSE will also adapt and revise existing and widely accepted certification methodologies for interoperability of Sensor Systems and C2 Systems. C2-SENSE will assess its outcomes in a realistic “Flood Scenario”.
Main objectives can be summarized as follow:
• O1: Propose an interoperability framework for heterogeneous networks composed of sensors and control centres via protocol profiles for crisis management and a service oriented architecture
• O2: Demonstrate the framework concept
• O3: Propose standards (for the interoperability and interoperability certification methodology)

Project Results:
The main objectives of Work package 2 (WP2) during this reporting period have been the user Requirement Analysis as well as the System analysis and Design. WP2 has no further deliverables after M9. Nevertheless new requirements may emerge during the project’s lifetime. For this reason, and in order to monitor the defined requirements, a web-based requirement database was developed and is continuously updated.
Through the WP3 activities, the software modules architecture has been detailed and shared between the Partners for addressing the interoperability layers of C2-SENSE. The Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) makes up the communication among components and web services because of its fast, scalable and durable characteristics. The development of Semantic interoperability suite is in progress, and some candidate interoperability profiles are defined. Regarding Collaboration Environment & Knowledge Layer, some tools are already fully or partly developed.
Aligned Procedures and Operations layer interoperability developed in WP4 will be supported with Activiti and MuleSoft framework, which are fully compatible with Enterprise Service Bus (the main communication module in the C2-SENSE system) and enable easy management of data exchange protocols (e.g., http requests simulation/modification). Installed framework gives an access to on-line set of tools for multi-users to create, visualize and exchange the emergency procedures as well as model business processes, organizations and actors. The result will enable emergency partners to familiarize with each other’s processes and to align their operations.
A procedure template (Polish example) has been implemented. It could be easily customized to other emergency actors in other countries. Such solution enables also to integrate Physical Layer components with Business Layer (Aligned Procedures and Operations) through IP gateway.

The objective of Work package 7 (WP7) during this reporting period has been the information gathering about procedures, systems and actors involved in emergency management for Puglia Region in Italy (Task 7.1 Requirement of C2-SENSE Pilot Applications). At the end of this step, starting from case studies based on previous emergency situations occurring in Puglia a flood scenario called "Pilot Scenario" was developed, and which will be applied in order to test the C2-SENSE system. In addition, the architecture of the Pilot Application has been defined (Task 7.2 Design of C2-SENSE Pilot Application), which will be composed of several existing components and will be able to interface the C2-SENSE implemented tools and some proprietary systems of the actors involved in emergency management in Puglia.

WP8 has supplied the first version of the exploitation and dissemination plan, not just on generic Communities (Scientific/Academic and/or Industrial/Commercial Communities), but on specific Exploitation Stakeholders by most of the Partners. Moreover, the first version of the report on Intellectual Property Management has been written. For the standardizations activities the standardization organizations Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) and Advancing Open Standards for the Information Society (OASIS) have been approached.

C2-SENSE project took actions aiming at ensuring the visibility and awareness of the results outside the C2-SENSE Consortium, specifically in the scientific and security community, emergency domain institutions, higher education institutions and in companies. More precisely, external visibility and public awareness of the C2-SENSE project have been ensured mainly by the public project website.

Potential Impact:
Effective response to emergencies, crises and disasters depends on timely available, reliable and intelligible information and this can only be achieved through effective coordination and communication among the first responders. Currently, the coordination and communication in crisis situations has a number of crucial problems. The exploitation philosophy of the C2-SENSE Project lies in the fact that these problems have severe effects and governments invest considerable amount of budgets to overcome them. Furthermore, there are already existing emergency management systems and they are not interoperable, which also causes a communication bottleneck. In this respect, C2-SENSE’s exploitation strategy will be towards this direction and the possible targets for the project are governmental institutes, emergency management system providers, healthcare institutes and public safety organizations.
Throughout the project duration the exploitation activities of the project consortium cover the assessment of the market, assessment of the related technological developments and the business potential especially by the industrial partners. This will guarantee an immediate feedback not only on the project work but also on the Dissemination and Use Plan which will describe the overall exploitation of the project by the C2-SENSE consortium. Such an operational model is essential for a software development project on the cutting edge of the technology in acting on a fast changing environment.

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