April 18 2013

April 18 2013




TOPIC: “Innovative Technologies for Safe Ship Evacuation: The Lynceus Project”


Report by Dr. Christos A. Kontovas


On April 18th, 2013 the seventh technical meeting for the 2012-2013 season took place in the auditorium of Maran Tankers Management, Inc, in Athens. Dr. Antonis Kalis, Senior Research Scientist at SignalGeneriX Ltd, Cyprus, presented the titled topic to around 25 SNAME members and guests.


Dr Kallis first explained the current situation, that is, there are still many fatalities accounted in accidents involving ships, despite the huge investment in maritime technology today. He argued that one main reason is the inability of current technology to identify the exact position of people, when onboard during the evacuation procedure or when in the sea. The Lynceus technology aims at filling this gap by providing low cost and robust innovative technology for localizing each individual.


Dr. Kallis gave some information regarding the name of the project: Lynceus, in Greek mythology, was the son of Aphareus and Arene, and the grandson of Perseus. He was one of the Argonauts participating in the hunt of the Calydonian Boar. He had preternaturally keen sight, and could even see things that were under the sea - exactly what the project wants to offer to the present days' Argonauts - KEEN SIGHT - so that they can ensure the safety of passengers in emergencies irrespective of where they will be located onboard the ship or at sea.


In more detail, the objective of Lynceus project is to develop and demonstrate ultra-low power wireless body-area-network technologies for enabling unobtrusive localization and tracking of people for onboard and overboard search and rescue as well as for safe evacuation of ships during emergency. Dr. Kallis presented the main Research & Development areas, which are the following: (a) onboard localization, (b) Passenger Behaviour and Health Monitoring, (c) realtime Disaster Management, and (d) overboard localization. According to the presenter, novel technology will be transferred to SME(small and medium-sized enterprises)-driven market segments of smoke alarm/fire detection systems, lifesaving equipment, emergency management decision support systems and assistive search and rescue equipment through the participation of SME and their respective Associations. More specifically, technology enabling is envisaged through the development of beyond the state-of-the-art real time emergency management processes and safe evacuation systems, both onboard (CCTV cameras and RFID) and overboard (Light and GPS/GSM). Among others, the following uses were presented: life saving and survival; fire detection and smoke alarm systems; safe evacuation and emergency management decision support; and Search and Rescue.


The presentation ended introducing the strong Hellenic participation in the project, that is, 8 out of 15 partners come from Greece and Cyprus.


After this presentation of significant current interest, a reception was held at an adjacent hall at Maran Tankers, Inc.


The  presentation of this lecture can be found here.   

( from L to R ): K. Maounis, Membership Com. Chair; A. Papanikolaou, Chair; A. Kalis,
Author; C. Kontovas, Papers Com. Chair; P. Lalangas, Secretary / Treasurer.

Apostolos Papanikolaou receiving from Petros Lalangas the Certificate of Appreciation from SNAME Headquarters,
for his contribution as Chairman of the Greek Section in 2012 - 2013.