CSE 400/401: Senior Design

Fall 2006 - Spring 2007

Wildland Firefighter Tracking System

Group Members: Netta Doron, Kate McArdle, and Jareau Wade

ESE Faculty Advisors: Sid Deliwala and Professor Phil Farnum

CIS Faculty Advisor: Professor Amir Roth


Currently, there is no efficient method for tracking the location and basic health status of wildland fire fighters when in the field. Walkie-talkies are used for communication between the team's base station and each team member, but this method requires active participation of both ends. Additionally, the firefighter may not know exactly where he is, nor may he be aware of subtle changes to his health that could indicate he is near serious exhaustion. There is a need for such information to be visually incorporated with other geographical maps to improve fire fighting efforts and the safety of firefighters.

The goal of this tracking system is to periodically and automatically track the geographical location, via GPS, and general health condition, via temperature, of multiple firefighters in the field. The end-user system is non-intrusive, so as not to interfere with existing communication systems and its use requires no attention from the firefighter. Each user's data is transmitted to the base station, where it is visually displayed on a map.

With this system, neither the firefighters in the field nor those at the base station have to spend a significant amount of time to increase the efficiency of fire fighting. The base station user can easily and quickly see the location and status of each fire fighter as well as of the fire.

Senior Design Poster

Senior Design Writeup

Home of the Wildland Firefighter (see what it's all about)