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In 2009, the system successfully delivered real-time warnings during the monsoon season in the Munnar district of Kerala. Based on these warnings, the Government of Kerala issued evacuation alerts to local communities. AmritaWNA was awarded the NABARD Innovation prize for contributions towards rural development in 2012. The project was also greatly praised by Dr. R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India & Chairman, Scientific Advisory Committee to the Cabinet (SAC-C), who stated, “The wireless sensor system developed by Amrita University and successfully tested at Munnar in Kerala to forecast natural disasters like landslides can be replicated in similar disasters-prone areas elsewhere in the country.”
The system’s uniqueness lies in the variety of strategically placed sensors that are accessible through an alert-based monitoring and notification network. It is regionally deployable and accessible to those potentially affected by ensuing landslides. Dr. Maneesha V. Ramesh, Director, AmritaWNA, explains that wireless sensors are increasingly becoming popular since sensor nodes are small, simple and inexpensive, requiring no cabling to connect them to each other or to a control center and can be used in a variety of areas related to disaster management and environmental monitoring.
Dr. Venkat Rangan, Vice Chancellor, Amrita University, states that the innovative, multi-level warning system is able to issue real-time alerts before an impending landslide, facilitating evacuation efforts and saving lives. The WSN system for landslide detection and monitoring, developed by AmritaWNA, offers a major contribution to the field of disaster management in India and abroad.
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