On May 5-11, 2016, the 22nd edition of the International Cultural and Academic Meeting of Engineering Students (ICAMES 2016) sponsored by the Engineering Society (ENSO) was held at the prestigious Bogazici University of Istanbul, Turkey. The competition was attended by about one hundred students, researchers and professors in the role of advisors from more than 15 countries and, among them, the team from the MSC-LES (Modeling & Simulation Center – Laboratory of Enterprise Solution, www.msc-les.org) of DIMEG University of Calabria triumphed winning the 1st place award in the simulation category with the DREDIS (Drone-based RElief on Disaster Simulation) project.
The DREDIS project, presented at ICAMES by the team from the University of Calabria, was previously integral part of the 2016 edition of SEE (Simulation Exploration Experience), with the aim to move the employability of drones beyond the traditional applications on Earth and towards a hypothetical moon base, which was simulated during the 2016 mission, where every second in disaster relief and search & rescue operations counts more than in any other place. The SEE Calabria 1 Team, made up by Antonio Padovano, Alessandro Chiurco, Marco Vetrano and Vincenzo Straffalaci and Prof. Francesco Longo as Faculty Advisor, aimed at demonstrating the necessity and importance of using modeling & simulation based tools as innovative risk assessment solutions and disaster relief tools for training drone pilots in case of unknown causes of potential disasters on a moon base scenario with constrained conditions such as the drone battery, the time elapsed and the need to take well-timed decisions based on the data collected by the drone air quality and biomedical sensors.
The MSC-LES University of Calabria team at ICAMES 2016 was made up by three engineering master students Beatrice Zaccaro, Eugenio Romeo, Giuseppe Flavio Canonaco together with Antonio Padovano and Prof. Francesco Longo (as Advisors) and has submitted to the competition a different application of the DREDIS project to demonstrate the powerful role of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as sophisticated measuring, area mapping, visual inspection, damage assessment and rescue supporting tool in case of unknown disasters or accidents in industrial plants or nuclear or chemical sites and for training drone operators to carry out disaster management and assessment activities quickly and effectively. They presented their own innovative solution characterized by a flight simulator of a drone (specifically a quadcopter) equipped with three sensors (an air contamination, a soil contamination and a biomedical sensor) as main tools for measuring pollutants or nuclear radiation (also recreated into the simulated environment thanks to a contamination puff which depends on several factors such as the meteorological conditions, the specific contaminant characteristics or the geomorphological factors), for visual inspecting and mapping the surrounding area and supporting search & rescue operations.
The solution was presented at the Bogazici University in Istanbul (Turkey) by carrying out an on-site demonstration with cutting-edge technologies, such as virtual helmets and glasses, thus providing a full-immersive experience to the end-user and promoting the human-in-the-loop approach.
To stress even more the educational relevance of SEE, it is worth mentioning that another SEE team – the University of Genoa team, leaded by Prof. Agostino Bruzzone and made up by Riccardo Di Matteo, Alberto Molinari, Andrea Meini and Federico Alessandria – won the 2nd place award in the Simulation Category at ICAMES 2016.