Virginia firefighters testing out new lifesaving technology

  • Source: WTTG-TV FOX 5 Washington, D.C.
  • Published: 09/20/2021 12:00 AM

Developed by the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) and the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (NASA JPL), POINTER is groundbreaking new first responder tracking and location technology that allows first responders to pinpoint their colleagues more precisely in emergencies. "This is a very exciting technology that adds another dimension to firefighters’ situational awareness," said Ed Chow, POINTER program manager. Only FOX 5 was there for the first live operation test ever with firefighters from Fairfax, Loudoun, and Stafford County. "We’re trying to improve the safety of the first responder firefighters," William Stout, Program Manager for Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology. This new, 3D technology uses magnetoquasistatic fields to locate firefighters up to 229 feet on scene. There are existing tracking technologies that use GPS, but often fail inside buildings and when there’s heavy smoke.


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