MIMAQ for disaster monitoring

fukushima smoke

fukushima #3 blacksmoke, image by daveeza

Lately there have been some disastrous events which suggest a new potential application for the MIMAQ platform: monitoring of air contamination.

It started with a big fire at a chemical trade company in The Netherlands (Moerdijk) where vast amounts of smoke of an unknown composition were released. During the event and the days after there was a lot of confusion whether the smoke was toxic for humans or cattle and even how the pollution was distributed during and after the event.

Imagine that all rescue workers had been equipped with MIMAQ sensors adapted to measure typical toxic components which are released during a fire. This would be of great value for assessment of the situation, where to stay away and whether to evacuate civilians from their neighborhoods – always a hard decision.

The earthquake and subsequent nuclear meltdown event in Japan is of an entirely different order of magnitude. Japanese people worry very much about the radiation levels in their direct surroundings, not surprising after the confusion that – again – was part of the official government announcements.

In both cases the confusion may well have to do with a real problem: some alarming spot measurements, followed by re-assuring low levels during laborious manual measurements with expensive equipment. The lack of an overall global picture makes interpretation of these values very difficult.

Again in this case how helpful would it be to get the big picture at a glance? What if we used MIMAQ sensors equipped with a Geiger Tube sensor and have people carry them around, not only for their own benefit but sharing the measurements with the world? The vision is the same: look around wit your mobile device in AR view, avoid the radiation spots and take the safe route home.

The technology is ready, let’s make sure we are prepared for the next disaster before it strikes.

Update: there appears to be a real opportunity here, citing the Mainichi Daily News:

“However, most municipal governments neither employ radiation experts nor have the expertise or equipment to monitor radiation levels. The Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Ministry says it intends to take action to monitor radiation levels and to reduce it in so-called “hot spots” if requested by a growing number of local residents.”

Full article: Radiation leaking from Fukushima power plant should be monitored more closely

Warning signs in AR view

Warning signs in AR view (concept study by TABWorldmedia.com), image courtesy http2007

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