ABSTRACT: We describe the design of a system for wildfire monitoring incorporating wireless sensors, and report results from field testing during prescribed test burns near San Francisco, California. The system is composed of environmental sensors collecting temperature, relative humidity and barometric pressure with an on-board GPS unit attached to a wireless, networked mote. The motes communicate with a base station, which communicates the collected data to software running on a database server. The data can be accessed using a browser-based web application or any other application capable of communicating with the database server. Performance of the monitoring system during two prescribed burns at Pinole Point Regional Park (Contra Costa County, California, near San Francisco) is promising. Sensors within the burn zone recorded the passage of the flame front before being scorched, with temperature increasing, and barometric pressure and humidity decreasing as the flame front advanced. Temperature gradients up to 5 C per second were recorded. The data also show that the temperature slightly decreases and the relative humidity slightly increases from ambient values immediately preceding the flame front, indicating that locally significant weather conditions develop even during relatively cool, slow moving grass fires. The maximum temperature recorded was 95 C, the minimum relative humidity 9%, and barometric pressure dropped by as much as 25 mbar.
ABSTRACT: This paper presents two case histories of the use of wireless sensor Mote technologies. These are devices that incorporate communications, processing, sensors, sensor fusion, and power source into a package currently about two cubic inches in size - networked autonomous sensor nodes. The first case discussed is the November, 2001, instrumentation of a blastinduced liquefaction test in Tokachi Port, Japan. The second case discussed is the dense-pakTM instrumentation of the seismic shaking test of a full-scale wood-frame building on the UCB Richmond shake table. The utility of dense instumentation is shown, and how it allows location of damage globally unseen. A methodology of interpreting structural seismic respose by Bayesian updating and extended Kalman filtering is presented. It is shown that dense, inexpensive instrumentation is needed to identify structural damage and prognosticate future behavior. The case studies show that the current families of Motes are very useful, but the hardware still has difficulties in terms of reliability and consistancy. It is apparent that the TinyOS is a wonderful tool for computer science education but is not an industrual quality instrumentation system. These are, of course, growing pains of the first incarnations of the Berkeley Smart Dust ideal. We expect the dream of easy to use, inexpensive, smart, wireless, sensor networks to become a reality in the next couple of years.
ABSTRACT: Wireless sensors for conducting wildfire monitoring share many of the capabilities of other environmental sensors, collecting data such as humidity, temperature and barometric pressure. On-board GPS location finding allows rapid, remote deployment. In this poster, a scheme for developing driver and interface software for employing the Crossbow MTS420CA sensorboard is described. A high-level, generalized sensor interface is presented. Data collection algorithms implemented over implementations of this sensor interface do not require programming changes to the underlying sensor driver code.
ABSTRACT: Collecting real time data from wildfires is important for life safety considerations, and allows predictive analysis of evolving fire behavior. One way to collect such data is to deploy sensors in the wild fire environment. FireBugs are small, wireless sensors (motes) based on TinyOS that self-organize into networks for collecting real time data in wild fire environments. The motes package GPS, temperature, pressure and other sensors onto a finger-sized board equipped with a radio, and transmit the data through the network. The FireBug system combines state-of-the-art sensor hardware running TinyOS with standard, off-the-shelf World Wide Web and database technology for allowing users to rapidly deploy FireBugs and monitor network behavior. This poster presents an overview of the FireBug system design, and a snapshot of the current state of development.