Challenge 4

Mission

Blue Jay Eindhoven, in cooperation with the Brabant-Zuidoost Fire Brigade (BBZO), wants to provide a case for students of the Brabant Robot Challenge 2020.
BBZO is responsible for the basic fire services in the Southeast Brabant region. BBZO considers it important that th

e business community, education, and the government cooperate to gather knowledge and implement developments that can support the tasks of BBZO. Making use of the students’ innovative capacities contributes enormously to this.
Blue Jay Eindhoven is a student team of the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). Twenty motivated students are collaborating on an innovation, namely, an indoor, autonomous, interactive drone that can be used in institutions, such as health care institutions, in the future.

In order for the drone to be of added value, it must be able to perform two functions:

  • providing first aid in indoor environments;
  • assisting people such as care providers and patients .

To meet this requirement, our drone must be able to monitor vital signs (e.g., breathing and heart rate), detect emergency situations, warn professional help, and—in the time between detecting and arriving help based on the type of emergency—provide an appropriate tool, such as a defibrillator or AED.

The drone can also be used as an assistant in health care. Elderly people and people with reduced mobility often require extra help with daily tasks in order to make their lives more comfortable and to encourage them to live independently for longer. The drone can recognize people and objects, enabling it to bring the right object to the right person when instructed to do so. The drone can remind patients of taking the right medication at fixed times.

Discussions between the Brabant-Zuidoost Fire Brigade and Blue Jay Eindhoven revealed various situations in which an indoor drone, providing first aid, can be of functional value. The pressure on personnel in the health care sector is great. Because of this, extra “hands” and “eyes” are very welcome. Due to this growing work pressure, dangerous situations arise including fire risks that are not noticed at an early stage or not at all by the personnel. Because we are dealing with people with reduced or no self-reliance, rapid action is crucial to prevent casualties. This includes rapidly detecting (the outbreak of) a fire, alerting the emergency services, and initiating first steps to limit the impact of the incident. The presence of a drone with specific sensors makes it possible to detect these kinds of situations more quickly and thus prevent casualties.
A drone that can detect heat and smoke and respond to it in the right way using smart sensors could contribute to improving fire safety in elderly care.

A test drone and a test room are available so that this can be practiced in real life.