Secure, reliable and effective first-response decision-support systems in critical emergency scenarios.

Project Description

Monitoring Stress among First Responder professionals is a CMU-Portugal funded project with the main goal to provide secure, reliable and effective first-response systems in critical emergency scenarios. To achieve this goal an interdisciplinary team with expertise in areas such as wearable technology for vital signs, biomedical signal processing, sensor networks and RF Location/Intelligent buildings was formed.

The goal of the Vital Responder research project is to explore the synergies between innovative wearable technologies, scattered sensor networks, intelligent building technology and precise localization services to provide secure, reliable and effective first-response systems in critical emergency scenarios. The core problem under consideration is to evaluate human stress in real-time under adverse conditions, by means of continuous online vital sign monitoring of first responders. Turning this vision into engineering reality requires significant advances on the several fronts: (a) real-time information gathering of body signals is very hard to achieve in uncontrolled and dangerous environments, (b) GPS based location systems do not work indoors, and (c) inter-disciplinary research between engineers and clinicians on the origins and nature of physiological stress is still at an infant stage. The “silver bullet” is provided by a high-tech company named Biodevices, which together with researchers at the University of Aveiro developed a suite of non-intrusive wearable technologies, as inconspicuous as a t-shirt, capable of gathering relevant information about the individual.