Alpine rescue operations are important, therefore it is also the duty to create new solutions
The season with all the snow is back and in the media you can read more about alpine rescues than in summer. This gives the impression that alpine rescues are mostly necessary in winter. Especially in summer, searches for missing hikers can be very time-consuming, as the areas are more extensive than an obvious avalanche. In addition, hikers usually carry an avalanche transceiver in winter.
Merkle accompanied a student research project and bachelor thesis at the HSR Hochschule für Technik Rapperswil, which dealt with digitalisation in alpine rescue. This resulted in a solution with several custom applications.
The students Lukas Oberholzer and David Riederer developed mobile applications for iOS and Android. The rescue workers in the field are tracked via smartphone and receive online the current search requests. The data required for this is securely managed centrally in a data center. The operational planning takes place in a web application based on the widely used Spring Framework.
More and more drones are being used for rough and dangerous terrain. For this purpose we used commercially available drones from DJI. For a safe and reproducible flight, the planning is done in the web application and with the addition of the digital elevation model, the data of the drone is transmitted. This enables an autonomous drone flight, where the drone pilot monitors the flight and can intervene if necessary.
Digitisation is advancing and can make existing processes more efficient. Since special requirements cannot always be implemented with standard software, we solve such challenges with an individual development. This example shows the potential of a digital transformation of paper maps and compass to a fully integrated digital solution. Merkle supports its customers in their digitization efforts.