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Emergesat, a unique space-based humanitarian solution

Emergesat, a humanitarian communication container, was showcased on March, 23rd, at the ENSOSP (Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Officiers de Sapeurs-Pompiers, the national French school for fire fighting officers).

Emergesat is a unique humanitarian tool combining space-based telecommunications, earth observation, location and navigation solutions as well as ground-based radio technologies like Wi-Fi and GSM, that enables emergency personnel to aid in the coordination and efficient handling of international humanitarian relief work in all-weather conditions. It also facilitates evaluation of human and logistical needs, coordination and intervention for real-time support, medical assistance, epidemiology analyses, water quality assistance, etc.
The aim of the demonstration was to provide the civil security teams with a hands-on experience of Emergesat‘s benefits during crisis situations when all conventional means of communications are down or overloaded. The container was flown by helicopter to the site and deployed by the civil security team. Less than ten minutes afterwards, all communications and applications were operational, using a broad band bidirectional satellite link (DVB-RCS) and long-distance Wifi.
The national security team then used an IP phone to contact their Headquarters in Paris, before setting up a videoconference, during which both sites were able to share maps of the damaged areas and exchange data (inventory of deployed resources, description of damages, etc.).
The demonstration was held in presence of Nicole Guedj, the former French minister and representing the French President, Christian Delavernée, Director of French Civil Security, Yannick d‘Escatha, President of the French space agency (CNES), Pascale Sourisse, President and CEO of Alcatel Alenia Space and Jean-Pierre Massue, President of REMIFOR.
During her speech, Pascale Sourisse said that Alcatel was proud to contribute to environmental issues through its space and telecom expertise and applications. She also mentioned the importance of a European approach to primary risk prevention and management : “Our role in the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) project is a crucial milestone. Our expertise in Earth observation (both optics and radar based) as well as in telecommunication and navigation today allows us to provide innovative solutions”, Pascale Sourisse concluded.