Giving Back to the Community – SARScene 2021
As engineers working at the forefront of exciting technologies like UAS’s, we sometimes get tunnel vision. It’s hard not to be excited about advances in autonomy, or the completion of recent BVLOS flights by companies who are pushing the boundaries of what is possible. We love technology, and the overcoming of new or difficult obstacles is what drives us. The human story can sometimes get lost in the mix of the pursuit of the next challenge, but it is important to us to give back to the communities in which we live.
Over the years we have participated in multiple fund-raising opportunities for charities and organizations with the intent to achieve a better world, and in recent years we have begun to examine how we can integrate our passion for problem solving with our desire to help others. To that end, over the last number of years Kongsberg Geospatial has been pursuing business opportunities where we feel that our offerings and expertise can make a difference. We have participated in flights with EMT agencies, worked with first responder groups to create processes and applications for emergency incident management, and even worked with defence organizations and researchers to expand industry and public knowledge of how to select sensors or technology that will best suit the needs of users.
This year, Kongsberg Geospatial will be participating in SARScene 2021. SARscene is an annual event which facilitates coordination and implementation of search and rescue (SAR) activities in Canada, and serves as a multi-stakeholder forum for discussing SAR issues and information sharing. Participation is open to any interested parties, departments, organizations concerned with SAR, including members of the private sector, all levels of government, and non-governmental organizations.
We are just one week away from the start of SARscene 2021, where almost 1,100 people from 12 countries are currently registered for the conference. Our representative speaker at this conference will be our very own Joe Lee.
Joe Lee is the Engineering Manager for Public Safety, Defence, and Unmanned Systems at Kongsberg Geospatial and has over 12 years of experience in the development and management of software systems in Public Safety, Aerospace, and Defense industries. His technical background includes the areas of Situational Awareness, C4S (Command, Control, Communication and Computer Systems), Battle Management Systems, Vehicle and Payload controls, Sensor Integrations and Simulator Systems.
Most recently, Joe has been responsible for the management of the OVERSEE (Optical Vision Enhancement and Refinement of Sensor Exploitation Effectiveness) UAS Search and Rescue research project in cooperation with CASARA, as well as engineering and product management for UAS systems at Kongsberg, and the management of Kongsberg prototype CUAS and Common Operational Picture software for DRDC (Defence Research and Development Canada) and the RCMP.
Joe will be presenting on the progress of our OVERSEE project in a discussion entitled “Towards Safe and Effective use of UAS platforms in Search and Rescue". We hope that information from this presentation will encourage SAR agencies in remote locations to consider the addition of COTS UAS platforms to their toolboxes and that these vehicles and operators will improve the odds of finding and rescuing individuals who are in need.
The Search and Rescue Saskatchewan Association of Volunteers is host to SARscene 2021. This year it is a virtual event and takes place from September 25 to October 3. You can register for SARScene 2021 here.