WIT Press

OSIRIS: A European Project Using A High Altitude Platform For Forest Fire Monitoring


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WIT Press


N. Lewyckyj, J. Biesemans & J. Everaerts


Within the framework of the European FP6 IST-5 project OSIRIS, a High Altitude Platform (HAP) will be used for the first time for surveying forest fires in the South of France. The HAP used will be the Mercator-1 Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) acquired by the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO) in Belgium. Mercator-1, a solar aircraft able to remain for days at stratospheric altitudes (14 to 20 km), will be used as a platform for a high resolution camera (GSD of a few meters). The platform will be controlled directly by an operator at a mobile Ground Control Station (GCS) or execute pre-defined flight planning (way points), which can be updated during flight. This will allow the end-users to optimize the image acquisition pattern as a function of the fire evolution. Because of its low airspeed, the platform is able to hover above a small region. Unprocessed data (level 0) will be down linked in real-time to the GCS for further processing (up to level 3 if required). Decision makers and/or the commanding officer of the fire brigades will thus have rapid access to up-to-date information at the intervention place. Furthermore, by means of a satellite uplink, the imagery will also be forwarded to a Central Data Processing Centre which is plugged into the OSIRIS Sensor Web. During the OSIRIS demonstration activities the benefits of the Sensor Web concept with respect to faster and/or better decision making will be evaluated. The unmanned character of the platform does not put any pilots at risk and its long endurance allows the HAP to be used for the different phases of a disaster (from preparedness to recovery). Furthermore, the system will provide high resolution combined with frequent image update. A live demonstration is planned for spring 2009. Keywords: disaster management, forest fire, remote sensing, real-time, high resolution, HAP, UAV, PEGASUS, OSIRIS.


disaster management, forest fire, remote sensing, real-time, high resolution, HAP, UAV, PEGASUS, OSIRIS.