Insitu Joins Firefighting Crews With ScanEagle UAS

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Insitu, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Boeing Company, joined the firefight against Northern California’s horrific Camp Fire by providing remote aerial survey information using its ScanEagle® Unmanned Aerial System (UAS), paired with its TacitView™ and Catalina™ software. The ScanEagle’s camera payload data and applied software generated daily operational maps and full motion video detailing the fire’s movement.

The TacitView and Catalina capabilities are designed to be interoperable with government agency systems enabling domestic remote sensing operations, and are extremely effective as tools for fire suppression. The information Insitu provided allowed Geographic Information System (GIS) specialists to quickly produce geospatial maps and perform further analyses.

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The Insitu Mobile Response team supported firefighters by supplying this data for more optimal fire suppression planning in the extremely rugged terrain of the Paradise, California area. This up-to-date information provided fire incident commanders with enhanced emergency response efforts, increased situational awareness and safety, and supported planning and resource allocation.

Flying at night, when manned aircraft typically are grounded due to safety concerns, the Insitu team flew the ScanEagle UAS beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) providing perimeter mapping and hot spot locations and points of interest, while disseminating real-time video feed to assist CALFIRE and multiple local and national firefighting response teams in their fire suppression planning.

READ MORE: UAS Effective As A Wildfire Suppression Resource

Insitu’s suite of real-time intelligence acquisition and distribution capabilities provide live Motion Imagery Standards Board (MISB) compliant video and flight telemetry to extensible mapping engines such as the Android Tactical Assault Kit (ATAK) and the Windows Tactical Assault Kit (WinTAK). These tools typically are utilized in defense missions, and now are being widely adopted by first responders for a variety of domestic operations, particularly for use in firefighting mission tools and products.

“We are extremely proud to have had the opportunity to use our ScanEagle and our data collection, analytics and processing capabilities to make a difference by providing another high-tech tool to help firefighters and first responders in suppressing this massive, destructive fire,” said Esina Alic, Insitu President and CEO. “Our hearts go out to all of those affected by this disaster.”

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