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Satnews Daily
January 8th, 2018

Partnership for Search & Rescue Solution Finds Astrosat and DroneSAR Joining Forces

Astrosat, a leading business in Europe’s space exploitation industry, has formed a partnership with Irish start-up DroneSAR-Search & Rescue, to incorporate drone software with Astrosat’s Recovery and Protection in Disaster (RAPID) system.
The RAPID system is designed to provide intelligent situational awareness and support in the context of disaster scenarios to aid, inform and support decisions that are made in the operational theater. DroneSAR recently won the Copernicus Master Service Challenge European Space Week in Tallin, Estonia.

DroneSAR was developed through Donegal Mountain Rescue, who were selected as one of four European pilot tests sites by DJI, a market leader in consumer drone technology, and EENA, the European Emergency Numbers Association. The software was refined based on the results of this project.

The company provides software that enables commercially available drones to maintain autonomous search patterns based on waypoint missions or user-defined search ‘boxes,’ reducing risk to search personnel, improving situational awareness and increasing the chance of finding people in distress, all at a fraction of the cost of a SAR helicopter. The software has a Share Location function, which allows pilots to instantly share locations to all team members as the drone flies.

Oisin McGrath, the CEO and Co-Founder of DroneSAR,  said that the software, a result of 18 months of development with input from Search and Rescue (SAR) teams across the country, fits perfectly with the RAPID system.

Steve Lee, CEO of Astrosat, noted that DroneSAR’s technology befits the firm's RAPID system. With RAPID’s ability to provide up-to-date mapping images in less than three hours, and the ability to interlace footage from drones, Astrosat is giving first responders the most detailed picture available. First responders receive a greater depth of overview, through the addition of drone footage to the interface. The company plans to integrate both platforms to give near-real-time satellite imagery to unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) pilots and to Command & Control for better informed decision making.