Virtual Emergency Management
Thick black smoke chokes the city, as fire moves in from the West. Emergency vehicles race to the fire front, as residents, schools and businesses prepare to evacuate. As embers begin to fall on the outer suburbs, everyone's next decisions are crucial.
Situational awareness is paramount in dealing with any emergency situation. Virtual Emergency Management creates a virtual environment that allows an emergency commander to be fully immersed in the situation, through VR, knowing the position of all their resources. The direction of the wind, and position of emergency vehicles, evacuation centres, potentially threatened lives and infrastructure are all mapped out in three dimensions. They are aware of it all.
In the city, evacuations are coordinated flawlessly to available schools. The emergency vehicles are directed in the optimal plan to stop the fire, keeping a constant supply of water. Although some houses could not be saved at the city's periphery, no lives are lost.
Our project places the user in a realistic environment utilising weather conditions, time of day, wind and terrain data. Using various relevant data sets within the VR experience allows for more effective information sharing and collaboration between agencies. It can also drive a more informed decision making process during domestic emergencies or national security events.
To demonstrate this, we created a six square kilometre area in the centre of Canberra. We then fed several large data-sets from the ACT Government and the Bureau of Meteorology into the environment to create a 3D Virtual Reality Emergency management experience. Some of the data used is obviously relevant for use within an emergency, while other data sets are seemingly unrelated until viewed in this format.
In the initial scene, emergency vehicles, displayed in Yellow, travel through the environment following the same path they took in 2016. Emergency call outs for 2016 are displayed in Red to compliment the vehicle data. Major water catchments are displayed in Blue, Schools across Canberra in Pink and sports ovals in Green. We have also used an international data-set to display airport locations to assist in managing major emergency incidents.
Evidence of Work
2003 Bushfire (Affected Areas)
Description of Use: Imported Shapefile from the data into Blender, converted, extruded the faces and exported this model into a FBX 3d Mesh for mapping.
ACT School Locations 2017 - archived
Description of Use: Imported csv data into project for mapping of ACT school locations.
ESA vehicle locations in the period between 201608 - 201609
Description of Use: Exported data as CSV and imported the vehicles into the project for dynamic movement based on actual GPS locations as they occurred.
Surface Hydrology Cartography
Description of Use: Utilising this dataset to extract water catchment features
Description of Use: Used to show the location of Canberra's sporting grounds in the virtual environment.
ESA Incidents and Responses 2014 - 2016 Suburb
Description of Use: Imported data set for to show emergency call out locations in the virtual environment.
World Airport, airline and route data
Description of Use: Imported International dataset for location of airports in the ACT for use within the Virtual Emergency Management
Check back here once the first checkpoint passes to see the challenges this team has entered.