Navigation Links
Dealing with power outages more efficiently
Date:11/7/2012

Power supply is the backbone of our modern economy. Nearly every aspect of life depends on electrically-operated devices. When the flow of power stops, it is not just the lights that go out. In the supermarket, the automatic teller machines and cash registers stop working. Even telephones, radios and televisions become paralyzed. If the shortage lasts a long time the supply of hot water, gas and fuel and the functioning of respirators at intensive care units in nursing homes or at private homes is at risk.

The causes of this dreadful scenario can range from natural disasters to terrorist attacks or just technical problems. A few recent examples demonstrate how real the risk is in Germany where the last major event occurred in Hannover in 2011. The 650,000 people there went without power for up to 90 minutes after a blockage in a coal-fired power plant, and the power main connection at a transformer station failed. Even more far-reaching consequences were seen from the biggest power outage in post-war history, when extreme snowfalls in the Mnsterland region in 2005 knocked out a series of high-voltage pylons. Some 250,000 people went without power, in some cases for up to five days. The financial damages exceeded 100 million euros.

Firefighters as process managers

In emergency cases, the utility companies, public officials and emergency services realize that they must contend with a variety of tasks: Who are the most seriously affected? Where is greatest need for action? How long will emergency power supply last? Who travels where, and how long will the fuel last? Theseare just a fraction of the issues that require rapid response. "To minimize the duration of the crash, the officers-in-charge at the fire, police and emergency services departments have to act like process managers," explains Dr. Thomas Rose, head of the Risk Management and Decision Support research department at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT in St. Augustin.

Whereas process managers at companies have access to specialized software tools, rescue personnel have no modern IT-backed process management tools available for crisis situations. "Currently available solutions for industry and business are too complex, and do not fit the unique requirements that the police, the fire department and other emergency services have. Even programs like Excel rapidly hit their limits when there are constantly changing volumes of data. This is precisely the gap our IT safety platform covers," explains Rose.

The software from the Fraunhofer Institute FIT provides energy suppliers, public officials and rescue professionals throughout Germany with the opportunity to be prepared in advance in other words, before the power goes out for optimal joint collaboration in crisis situations. At the heart of this IT solution, developed under the auspices of the InfoStrom research project, are role-based checklists. These contain not only detailed action guidelines on what each individual site has to do, but also guidelines on which items have to be coordinated with other sites.

Tests in two local counties

For example, the technical relief organization knows exactly how many vehicles the local fire department plans to deploy. "Checklists are ideally suited for crisis management. But previously, they were only available on paper. Even the cross-organizational approach was missing. In addition, we integrated a glossary. Because different rescue personnel typically use different sets of terminology," says Rose. The operational capability of the software was successfully evaluated in the more urban-defined Rhein-Erft county, and the more rural setting of Siegen-Wittgenstein county.


'/>"/>
Contact: Prof. Dr. Thomas Rose
thomas.rose@fit.fraunhofer.de
49-224-114-2798
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Stem cell research paves way for progress on dealing with Fragile X retardation
2. Heart-powered pacemaker could one day eliminate battery-replacement surgery
3. MIT research: The power of being heard
4. Green Oakley Cluster to double OSC computing power
5. Powerful sequencing technology decodes DNA folding pattern
6. The power of broccoli, in a capsule
7. Folding light: Wrinkles and twists boost power from solar panels
8. New study discovers powerful function of single protein that controls neurotransmission
9. Powerful new approach to attack flu virus
10. UTMB researchers create powerful new method to analyze genetic data
11. Pitcher plant uses power of the rain to trap prey
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Dealing with power outages more efficiently
(Date:2/2/2016)... , Feb. 2, 2016  BioMEMS ... are primarily focused on medical screening and ... point-of-care parameters. Wearable devices that facilitate and ... freedom of movement are being bolstered through ... human biomedical signal acquisition coupled with wireless ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... Feb. 2, 2016  Based on its recent ... Sullivan recognizes US-based Intelligent Retinal Imaging Systems (IRIS) ... Award for New Product Innovation. IRIS, a prominent ... North America , is poised to set ... diabetic retinopathy market. The IRIS technology presents superior ...
(Date:1/27/2016)... , Jan. 27, 2016  Rite Track, Inc. a ... West Chester, Ohio announced today ... service staff, based in Austin, Texas ... ability to provide modifications, installations and technical support offerings ... CEO of PLUS, commented, "PLUS has provided world class ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  Vermillion, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... gynecologic disease, today announced the formation of the Steering ... --> --> Pelvic masses can ... diagnosis and management. Once pregnancy is ruled out, pelvic ... and ovaries, advanced endometriosis, benign ovarian tumors and gastrointestinal ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... 11, 2016  Bioethics International, a not-for-profit organization focused on ... marketed and made accessible to patients around the world, today ... named the publication of the Good Pharma Scorecard ... also featured as one of BMJ Open ,s ,Most ... that are most frequently read. Ed Sucksmith , ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  Wellcentive today announced ... Portland, Oregon -based community care organization ... population health analytics, quality reporting and care management ... strengthen its team of quality managers, analysts and ... the provider groups serving FamilyCare members. ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... Feb. 11, 2016  Dovetail Genomics™ LLC today announced ... program for a planned metagenomic genome assembly service. ... metagenomic genome assembly method in a talk on Friday, ... & Technology conference in Orlando, Fla. ... complex datasets is difficult. Using its proprietary ...
Breaking Biology Technology: