Smarter, faster technology to improve disaster resilience
The MOBILISE project brings together experts from University of Salford with local agencies in Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Malaysia to better plan for disasters by exploiting the latest information and communication technologies.
Natural disasters are occurring more frequently in South Asia. Floods, earthquakes, landslides and droughts can wipe out many years of development in a single catastrophic event.
Research has found that countries urgently need to build resilience by creating a more proactive and risk aware approach to disaster planning.
The MOBILISE project team has developed a new digital platform and a suite of tools that will help these countries deliver a faster, smarter response when disasters happen. The most recent iteration of the platform, MOBILISE 3.0, gathers information and data from sensors, satellites, city information models and communities to present an innovative 3D environment that allows agencies to work together to prepare for and respond to disasters.
Agencies can use the platform to understand vulnerabilities, explore ‘what-if’ scenarios and recommend measures to improve the areas resilience. It is currently being used by disaster management centres in Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Pakistan.
Drone visualisation platform
A new digital drone visualisation platform will allow emergency operation centres to receive live videos from drones and construct a 3D representation of the disaster areas to understand the scale of the impact of a disaster on communities and the physical infrastructure. Linking the drone technology to the rich city information model provided by the MOBILISE 3.0 digital disaster management platform will help decision-makers extract further information about the built environment, infrastructures and communities. Authorities can use this holistic and detailed view of the situation to save people's lives. It also has the potential to support post-disaster reconstruction efforts.
Integrated sensor networks
The team has developed a digital platform that allows a range of different sensor networks to be integrated so project partners can effectively monitor rising rivers and rainfall which can lead to floods and landslides. Disaster management centres can use this information to create a comprehensive picture about a hazardous situation and improve response times. The technology will support disaster risk reduction efforts in Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Pakistan, where sensor networks are often disconnected and do not always work.
Implementing the MOBILISE platform in Sri Lanka
In 2020 the MOBILISE team visited Sri Lanka’s Disaster Management Centre (DMC) and National Building Research Organisation (NBRO) to handover the MOBILISE digital platform. They worked with the technical and operational teams within these organisations to set up the platform and demonstrate how to use it.
MOBILISE – A digital collaborative multi agency platform for building resilient communities
Project lead: Professor Terrence Fernando, Director of THINKlab, University of Salford
Funder: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation
- THINKlab, University of Salford, UK
- Brownfield Research and Innovation Centre, University of Wolverhampton, UK
- Centre for Disaster Resilience, University of Salford, UK
- Department of Sociology, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka
- Centre for Disaster Risk Reduction, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka
- KANZU Research Centre, Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia, Malaysia
- Centre for Disaster Preparedness and Management, University of Peshawar, Pakistan
- Main image: The MOBILISE digital platform shown modelling the impact of flooding on residential areas.
- Image 2: The MOBILISE digital platform allows the user to create dynamic profile slices at any point along a terrain.
- Image 3: Data is presented through a web-based collaborative environment which supports multiple agencies with their work in disaster preparedness, disaster mitigation and disaster response.
- Image 4: The MOBILISE drone visualisation platform which uses data to produce 3D models of a location.
- Image 5: The integrated sensor network platform allows multiple users to model the impact of rising rivers and rainfall which can lead to flooding on a specific residential area.
- Image 6: Professor Terrence Fernando, the University of Salford’s THINKlab Director, demonstrates the MOBILISE digital platform for the Ambassador for the Royal Norwegian Embassy and members of Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Defence at the 10th Annual Research Symposium on Equitable Resilience at Sri Lanka’s National Building Research Organisation (NBRO).
For more information on the MOBILISE project, please visit: http://www.mobilise-project.org.uk/