Smartphones are helping the society in various aspects and appear to be a savior in emergency situations arising due to earthquakes, floods or forest fires. The researchers at the Universidad de Alicante in Spain makes it possible to locate people who are suffering from an accident in remote locations without a phone signal and where a speedy rescue has to be sent in an emergency to save lives of affected people.
Jose Angel Berna, creator of the technology and professor at Universidad de Alicante stated that “We have designed an application (app) that can be incorporated to any smartphone and that, without a signal, emits a Wifi signal which in turn acts as a distress beacon over a distance of several kilometers, at present, there is no system in the world that uses Wi-fi signals to geo-locate a smartphone. There are devices that allow you to detect mobile phone signals from a smartphone and pinpoint its location through triangulation, but it costs around EUR 80,000 around 61 lakhs in Indian ruppee and requires the use of a helicopter,” He also mentioned that this signal contains the location of the person who has suffered the accident or disappeared and is using the smartphone emitter, along with a short message that can be altered depending on the situation, for examples like “I am injured,” “I am disorientated,” or “I need help,”
to avoid the distress signal, the researchers have also created a light, portable receptor device that rescue teams or mountain shelters. This detector has a small antenna, which connects to the smartphone of the search party. When a person met with an accident, the victim only has to activate the mobile phone app, which will, in turn, emit the distress signal periodically – for hours or even days, even if they are unconscious – indicating the coordinates of its location. Researchers mentioned that during the tests performed on ground and water it was confirmed that the device can pick up the distress signal of the emitting smartphone up to a distance of two or three kilometers, respectively, although it may be possible to increase its reach.
However, the creator of technology at Universidad de Alicante quoted that the new system is more economical, as its receptor has a cost that would allow its commercialisation for approximately EUR 600 if used by a large number of rescue teams,