mountain rescue scene

Insight Society: Supporting Search and Rescue with a Smartphone App

Submitted on Monday, 18/09/2023

During search and rescue operations, emergency first response teams spend a lot of time communicating their current location and status with their leader over noisy radio communication systems. Sebastien Scheurer and his Insight team are developing a modular system to provide as much of that information as possible to team leaders. One component of the system is a human activity recognition (HAR) algorithm, which applies an ensemble of gradient boosted decision trees (GBT) to features extracted from inertial data captured by a wireless-enabled device, to infer what activity a first responder is engaged in. An easy-to-use smartphone application can be used to monitor up to four first responders’ activities, visualise the current activity, and inspect the GBT output in more detail.