What is C-Thru?
C-Thru is a Smoke Diving Helmet designed for the firefighters to aid them through their smoke diving search and rescue missions. Since it is almost impossible to see within the highly dense smoke, The smoke divers have to crawl on the ground and find their way by keeping hand contact with the walls while carrying heavy air supports and hand held equipments. At the same time they need to keep checking the thermal imaging device and need to keep hold on to one another's air tank handle in order not to lose each other. They also have less than six minutes to rescue all the victims within the building before the smoke kills them. C-thru provides a wireframe vision of the interior geometry surrounding the smoke diver, and enhances the surrounding sounds selectively, thus letting the smoke divers search for the victims more accurately. It simplifies many separate layers of heat and impact protection into a single package. which stabilizes and eases the movements.
What was the challenge while Designing C-thru?
The Challenge with this project was to provide an accurate way for the Smoke divers to see and move within the dense smoke easily and so to rid them of the burden of carrying extra equipments and simplifying a many separately layered heat and damage protection down into one single unit. Also to allow them to keep the communication between each other during the rescue missions. Today the smoke divers get ready inside the fire truck on their way to the fire scene. They have to get dressed in the middle of the night within 90 seconds, otherwise they are left behind. that's the rule. No time to. They are very dedicated people who believe in rescuing lives. They often have to do so with many inaccurate and uncomfortable equipments. It was a challenge to put protective inner hood, full face gas mask, heat insulated helmet, the outer hood, the thermal Imaging device and the audio communication device into one package. Today's well applied technologies provided me concept level solutions.
What makes C-Thru an excellent design solution?
One of the goals with this concept project was to provide a near future vision of the possible solutions to fire rescue vision and communication problems via use of technology.
Today right outside of the burning building the smoke diver leader in charge of the rescue mission, creates a hand written map depending on the verbal descriptions of the rescue team inside in order to navigate and guide them back out when the time comes. C-Thru provides an easy and accurate vision for Firefighters who risk their lives to save ours on daily basis. With C-Thru They can walk or run towards the detected victim instead of crawling on the floor holding the fire hose in one hand and the tank handle of their team mate, while trying to make contact with the wall to navigate within the building.
With C-Thru The smoke divers can get ready within seconds, keep track of each other, See what is going on around them and get vital information simultaneously.
A burning building is a noisy place. Firefighters like to listen the sounds for they can provide an early warning of a collapsing sealing or a doorway. But those loud fire sounds also interfere with the communication sounds with the smoke diver leader and the team mates. C-Thru selective noise cancels the surrounding sounds and only enhances victim and pre-set cracking sounds providing a more clear communication.
With C-Thru Smoke diver leader do not have to do guess work and fill any after reports. Everything is being recorded simultaneously. This provides improvements for the future rescue missions and better evaluation and a step towards preventing future fire accidents.
This project is an excellent solution to the complexity of vision, protection, communication and rescue difficulties because, it solves the problem directly and in one package. The alternatives including, draining or suffocating the building off the smoke, or scanning the building with sonar or similar technologies or blindly diving in, are all take time and very risky alternatives. There is very short time to rescue victims within the six minute time limit and the easiest way is to be able to see and spot and reach comfortably.
Technical specs or production method of C-Thru:
C-Thru Smoke diving helmet uses several technologies.
The environmental data received by the optical thermal camera is sent to the computing device hand held by the smoke diver leader via Wireless communication and received back by the wireless port device then the newly processed data is sent to the head mounted projectors, which project the calculated wire frame imaging through the front visor. The smoke diver sees the projected image of the surrounding. This technology is currently being used by the US. Air forces.
Estimated selective active noise cancellation on the headphones are pre set to certain frequencies just like face recognition technology in vision systems.