News Item

Mon, 23 Apr 2018
News_ESD, News_Homepage

SCISYS collaborates in trials of unmanned systems for intelligent search and rescue

SCISYS UK Ltd, a leading developer of advanced information and communications technology services and solutions, is pleased to be taking part in the two-week ‘UK Search & Rescue in the 3rd Dimension’ (UKSAR 3D) technology demonstrations event in South Wales. A team from SCISYS will participate in two separate teams investigating the use of advanced Unmanned Air Systems (UAS) in Search and Rescue (SAR) operations.

The company, which supplies the Systems Information Management System (SIMS) to the RNLI’s newest and most technologically advanced Shannon-class lifeboats, will deploy its MACSYS mission system to deliver shared situational awareness and improved decision making, enabling faster rescues when using unmanned aerial systems.

The system includes artificial intelligence (AI) supplied by partner Lockheed Martin UK Ltd. The AI will analyse video from the UAS to automatically identify objects of interest such as boats and persons in the water. This automated system for search operations will, in most conditions, reduce the operational burden of manually reviewing hours of video of empty sea. MACSYS will use the AI scene-analysis system to detect objects and casualties in the search area automatically, and will seamlessly relay the location to crews and operation centres in real-time. This approach is expected to result in quicker rescues, leading to more lives saved while reducing risk to lifeboat crews and coastguard teams, who can also use remote surveillance to plan safe approaches to casualties at sea or onshore.

The trials will involve SCISYS fitting the MACSYS system to one of the RNLI’s Tamar-class lifeboats, as well as in a Land Rover operating in support of Coastguard rescue teams ashore. The company’s MACSYS system proudly underpins the SIMS system that is used in the RNLI’s Shannon-class lifeboats.

Commenting on the event, Chris Burton, Maritime Business Manager at SCISYS, said: “We are proud and honoured to be involved in these advanced-technology trials and hope that the work we have done to integrate MACSYS with other innovative technologies will create a SAR ‘system-of-systems’ that can deliver real lifesaving benefits that could, in future, be exploited to help RNLI and Coastguard volunteers save lives at sea and ashore.”

“The aim of this important collaborative work, taking place over two weeks, is to investigate how artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to automatically analyse hours of video to create shared situational awareness afloat and ashore, and to assess the benefit of this approach to SAR operations. We hope that we’ll see real potential for saving lives faster while keeping crews safer than ever before.”