WINSOC Review Meeting Successfully Completed

Representatives from various European partners viz. University of Rome, Selex Communications, Intracom Telecom, Technical University of Catalonia and Czech Centre for Science and Technology returned home after successfully completing the review of India’s first-ever wireless sensor network system for landslide detection developed and deployed by Amrita University. “A lot of different technologies had to be integrated to make it work,” stated Dr. Venkat Rangan, Vice-Chancellor of Amrita University, while addressing a press conference along with the European partners. “Here we had an opportunity to apply this cutting-edge technology to save lives.”

All major Indian newspapers featured this flagship research project of Amrita University in a big way. There were news reports in The Hindu, The Times of India and other major newspapers. “The initial deployment of this system was done at the Anthoniar Colony in Munnar, an area prone to rainfall-induced landslides,” stated an excerpt from the Express News Service. “The test deployment was done in May 2008 and 23m deep sensors have been placed in 10 sections in the 15-acre land area in Munnar Colony. The sensors will help give a 24-hour early warning [if a landslide is imminent]. The DRDO has shown interest in our technology which could help them in the border areas.”

The international group from the European Union expressed their satisfaction at the successful deployment at Munnar. “Amrita’s deployment made the theoretical work performed by rest of the partners valuable,” stated Mr. Paolo Capodieci, Selex Communications, Italy, the overall WINSOC project coordinator.

Press Conference“The European partners were highly impressed by our hard work and enthusiasm to complete the work,” later shared Ms. Maneesha Ramesh, who led the Amrita team. “The European Partners visited the deployment site at Munnar, Idukki as well as the WINSOC lab where we were able to demo real-time data streaming.”

“We are happy that the WINSOC Consortium Internal Review Meeting was successfully completed,” stated Dr. Venkat Rangan, Vice-Chancellor of Amrita University. “Within three months, the network will be extended to 150 geological sensors and approximately 25 wireless sensor nodes.” The Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Department of Information Technology (DIT) have sanctioned Rs. 2.5 crore for the project. These additional sensors will also have solar panels to charge the batteries, just as in the first set of sensors. Data will be transmitted from the field management centre to the main station at Amrita University.

“Once fully operational, the system could be deployed in various parts of the country that are prone to landslides, industrial sites prone to gas leakages and areas having regular forest fires,” added Dr. Venkat Rangan. “The DRDO has shown interest in the project for detecting avalanches and landslides in the Konkan region and the Himalayas.”

June 16, 2009
School of Engineering, Amritapuri

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