Real-time Flood Forecasting and Reporting

Period of Performance: 03/20/2017 - 03/19/2019

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Physical Optics Corp.
1845 West 205th Street Array
Torrance, CA 90501
Firm POC
Principal Investigator

Abstract

To address the DHS need to rapidly predict, detect, and react to ever-changing flood conditions, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Real-time Flood Forecasting and Reporting (RAFFAR) system based on a combination of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) wireless networking technologies and existing proprietary POC sensors. The system will offer a means to deploy a scalable mesh network across a broad area that allows sensors to relay information through open data exchange standards to an operation center for monitoring of both flood conditions and heavy rain conditions that serve as predictors of floods. After collection, the information will be relayed to handheld devices through wireless emergency alerting. In Phase I, POC demonstrated the feasibility of RAFFAR by building and testing a preliminary prototype network and performing an analysis of a full-size network roll-out. At the end of the Phase I effort, the RAFFAR system reached TRL-6. In Phase II, POC plans to manufacture sufficient sensors to deploy a 100+ unit network for extensive outdoor testing. The successful completion of this project at the end of Phase III will benefit the nation in both government and commercial sectors by providing real-time disaster data so that first responders can react appropriately based on the best possible information. Commercial applications for this technology include applications in disaster prevention and recovery, manufacturing and equipment monitoring, and irrigation management.