Can insects help with firefighting?
Fires cause property damage and loss of human life, and detecting and controlling early-stage fires can reduce the effect of fires.
This project aims to design and build a robot for the detection and localisation of the smouldering source - a fire at an early stage. A robot equipped with a wind sensor, a carbon dioxide sensor and four ultrasonic sensors was built. The robot is controlled by a plume-tracing algorithm which is inspired by insects who can search for chemical sources. The plume here is defined as the trail of mixed contaminant molecules in the moving air.
The robot was tested in the real outdoor-environment where there is a plume generated from a smouldering source. The experimental results prove that the robot controlled by the plume-tracing algorithm can successfully detect and localise the smouldering source.
Our built and natural environments