Vodafone creates the first “smart” forest in Greece

Connectivity, IoT and artificial intelligence at the service of fire prevention and response

Unfortunately, in Greece every year a large area of forests is burned.It is a fact that we often learn that there is fire somewhere, when valuable time has been lost. Could new technologies, by “tapping” on ultra-fast connectivity networks, solve this problem and save the planet? Digital sciences are definitely working on sustainability and tackling climate change and countries are seeking, by leveraging new technologies, to protect their natural environment. Greece gives its own positive answer to the question and becomes one of the first countries in Europe to put emerging technologies, such as the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence, at the service of forest protection.

In the National Park of Parnitha, which is the most important green lung of Attica and the main mechanism for reducing the temperature of the air, thanks to technology, the first smart forest area of Greece is created, acquiring an advanced fire prevention and response system.

The system leverages Internet of Things technology and artificial intelligence for effective and timely detection of smoke in forest areas. By nipping the fire in the bud, the solution activates an alarm and sends the exact location, as well as image from the point of fire to the control center operator, through a web-based application, accessible from everywhere.

The system ensures the detection of even limited fire outbreaks over very long distances, enables extremely rapid detection, usually before the fire becomes visible from the visual means, while it is possible to locate the hearth 24 hours a day, even at completely zero levels of lighting.

The initiative, owned by Vodafone, has a duration of 12 months and is in line with the company’s strategy to make technology an ally in the effort to tackle the climate crisis.

The aim is for the pilot project to be exploited in all forests and areas of natural beauty in Greece, addressing a “hot” for the country problem, if we take into account that every year fires destroy about 500,000 acres of forest and agricultural land.

Where there is smoke…

Leveraging its network, the Vodafone Green Network, artificial intelligence, state-of-the-art cameras and sensors, the solution created by the company offers a range of features, such as automatic smoke detection.In combination with Vodafone IoT, the system provides the ability to record changes in the temperature of the environment within a range of many kilometers, identify the reasons for this, but also record various environmental indicators, such as humidity level and atmospheric pressure.By using the appropriate equipment, data and readings collected and a smart algorithm, the system perceives the danger and signals an alarm. This happens when, for example, the heat increases and the algorithm perceives from the data that there is a fire.

At the same time, a camera can recognize the smoke indicator at some point and confirm it, sending an order to another camera to focus there. Thus, it activates the corresponding signal and sends image and location to a special platform.The many innovations of the new solution include the triple parallel control system, which consists of a panoramic 360 detection technology through a special long-distance thermal camera and dual-spectrum cameras, which utilize artificial intelligence models for the early detection of smoke or fire.

In addition, special Super Starlight cameras are used, which make use of algorithms for monitoring in low light conditions, as well as fixed, as well as PTZ thermal cameras. To this equipment is added a set of multi-sensors, which are placed at various points in the forest, record the temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, as well as H2, VOC, CO and CO2.

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