Nokia Teams with Philippine Red Cross for Disaster Communications with Drones
Tuesday, November 27, 2018 | Comments

Nokia and Philippine mobile operator Smart Communications are collaborating with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) to bring Long Term Evolution (LTE)-connected drones and a portable network into areas struck by disaster.

PRC will incorporate the Nokia Saving Lives (NSL) solution into its toolkit for search-and-rescue activities. The collaboration with PRC and Smart is the first deployment of the NSL concept.

The NSL solution integrates into Red Cross teams, and a high-capacity mobile broadband network combined with drones and on-site computing power effectively supports Red Cross emergency operations. Aerial insights and data analytics improve situational awareness and help the incident commander prioritize resources for people in distress. A demonstration also highlighted how NSL provides a critical communications channel in remote areas where there is no network coverage or when a disaster destroys existing network infrastructure.

The NSL solution is comprised of a portable LTE network, which connects to drones equipped with cameras, sensors or speakers; a high-performance server; and analytics applications. A team of 25 Nokia employees has been trained to become technical experts to serve as volunteers in the Red Cross organization. In addition to the technical training, these volunteers have contributed 1,000 hours to the Red Cross disaster preparedness education in support of Nokia's commitment to the U.N. sustainable development goals.

"With the help of Nokia Saving Lives, the volunteers and the collaboration with Smart, we are better equipped to provide emergency assistance to the people of the Philippines in a timely and efficient way,” said Richard J. Gordon, PRC chairman and CEO.

The GSMA Disaster Response Innovation Fund provided partial funding for the NSL project.

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