The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume XXXVIII-1/C22
Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XXXVIII-1/C22, 87–93, 2011
Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XXXVIII-1/C22, 87–93, 2011

  06 Sep 2012

06 Sep 2012


P. Molina1, I. Colomina1, T. Vitoria2, P. F. Silva3, Y. Stebler4, J. Skaloud4, W. Kornus5, and R. Prades6 P. Molina et al.
  • 1Institute of Geomatics, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya & Generalitat de Catalunya, Castelldefels, Spain
  • 2Asociación de la Industria Navarra, Pamplona, Spain
  • 3DEIMOS Engenharia, Lisbon, Portugal
  • 4École Polytéchnique Fédéral de Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 5Institut Cartog`afic de Catalunya, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 6Direcció General de Protecció Civil, Barcelona, Spain

Keywords: UAV, Search-and-Rescue, EGNOS, redundant IMU, Integrity Monitoring

Abstract. This paper will introduce and describe the goals, concept and overall approach of the European 7th Framework Programme's project named CLOSE-SEARCH, which stands for 'Accurate and safe EGNOS-SoL Navigation for UAV-based low-cost SAR operations'.

The goal of CLOSE-SEARCH is to integrate in a helicopter-type unmanned aerial vehicle, a thermal imaging sensor and a multi-sensor navigation system (based on the use of a Barometric Altimeter (BA), a Magnetometer (MAGN), a Redundant Inertial Navigation System (RINS) and an EGNOS-enabled GNSS receiver) with an Autonomous Integrity Monitoring (AIM) capability, to support the search component of Search-And-Rescue operations in remote, difficult-to-access areas and/or in time critical situations. The proposed integration will result in a hardware and software prototype that will demonstrate an end-to-end functionality, that is to fly in patterns over a region of interest (possibly inaccessible) during day or night and also under adverse weather conditions and locate there disaster survivors or lost people through the detection of the body heat.

This paper will identify the technical challenges of the proposed approach, from navigating with a BA/MAGN/RINS/GNSS-EGNOSbased integrated system to the interpretation of thermal images for person identification. Moreover, the AIM approach will be described together with the proposed integrity requirements. Finally, this paper will show some results obtained in the project during the first test campaign performed on November 2010. On that day, a prototype was flown in three different missions to assess its high-level performance and to observe some fundamental mission parameters as the optimal flying height and flying speed to enable body recognition. The second test campaign is scheduled for the end of 2011.