by Carol Politi
Indoor location is getting more and more press - from new infrastructure-based WiFi and Bluetooth technologies to sensor fusion and map fusion technologies like that developed by TRX. A recent article in Urgent Communications highlighted the fact that indoor location systems for even the most stringent applications will be tested this year in field trials, and early deployments are on the horizon.
While systems are becoming available that can meet the requirements of many enterprise and security applications, firefighter tracking is not yet commercially available. Given the inherent challenges of the firefighting environment, and the life safety nature of the application, extensive field trials and staged deployments are required.
Thanks to several key Government programs, there is support for maturing and trialing indoor location technology for these mission critical applications. The GLANSER project (managed and funded by the DHS Science and Technology Directorate), with team members Honeywell, Boeing/Argon ST, and TRX, is not only supporting development of a high accuracy system but also the development of important system capabilities that will meet the rigorous requirements of the fire community. The Globe WASP project (managed and funded by the US Army Natick) is supporting integration of the tracking system within radio systems and fire suites in a way that allows for operationally realistic deployment.