In case of a disaster it is of utmost importance that critical buildings of strategic interest, such as the Ministry of the interior, hospitals, police stations and fire departments, are functional as soon as possible. Towards this end, this work proposes a monitoring system for such buildings that will enable the automatic, near real-time, continuously updated assessment of their damage state, loss and needs in order to restore their functionality.

Through an innovative approach in project MEMSCON only a very limited number of acceleration and strain sensors are needed to monitor a building in order to determine, in near real-time, its damage state and loss following an earthquake. In RECONASS this work will be extended to cover blast, impact and fire damage. For this, small, inexpensive, wireless, local positioning tags will be developed that will be embedded in the structural elements of the monitored buildings to report their position to the base station. Following a disaster, comparison
of the original position of the tags – in the undamaged state – with the final position of the tags – in the damaged state – will be used in order to hypothesize the structural system that has emerged from the disaster. This latter system, then, will be used to assess the structural response, damage and loss using the MEMSCON code.

Real-time reporting under crisis situations is a difficult task. To ensure that the positioning, acceleration, strain and temperature information from the monitored buildings can reach the base station, a gateway-PCCDN tool for communication will be developed in this work that will provide redundancy at situations of access network unavailability by utilizing multiple and different access interfaces, e.g., GSM, UMTS, etc.

Detailed monitoring is only economical for selected facilities that are essential for response and recovery or facilities that have a high value as a target for terrorist attacks. In case of spatially extended events it is essential to get an accurate assessment of physical damage in the whole affected area as soon as possible in order to provide guidance to humanitarian aid contributors, as well as subsequent rehabilitation and reconstruction. Remote sensing using both air- and space-borne imagery has been a commonly used tool for rapid damage mapping for more than a decade, with increasingly higher spatial and temporal image resolution, as well as international agreements, such as the International Charter “Space and Major Disasters”, allowing immediate data acquisition and damage mapping after an event. However, accuracy of such image-derived maps has been frequently questionable (Kerle, 2010, 2011), and validation of these maps lengthy. Near real-time construction damage data from the monitored buildings, especially on the structural and non-structural elements visible from outside the building, will be used in this work in order to effectively calibrate and evaluate the results of remote sensing-based damage maps.

Based on the above a PCCDN Tool will be developed in RECONASS that will provide the recovery stakeholders with near real-time, detailed and reliable data and information on the construction damage, loss and needs of monitored buildings, continuously updated, and spaceborne and airborne damage maps (calibrated and validated for the buildings monitored) produced in a much reduced time, fused and integrated with relevant external data and information. This Tool will provide international interoperability, allow for customization and expansion and
permit collaborative work between the civil agencies/authorities and the relief units.


The RECONASS work will be carried out in 10 Work-Packages (WPs) as follows:

- WP1 (User Requirements and System Architecture) involves the analysis of state-of-theart damage and needs assessment tools, standards, user requirements, specification and the design of system architecture.

- WP2 (RECONASS Monitoring System-Accurate Positioning-Secure Communication) involves the development of an indoor, automated, real-time, wireless, local positioning system that will provide continuous information on the precise 3D localization of tags embedded in the structural elements of a r.c. building. Additionally, in this WP commercially available strain, acceleration and temperature sensors, in a package that will be ready for installation, will be prepared. Furthermore, a Gateway-PCCDN-tool for communication that will guarantee the real-time monitoring of the building even in cases of communication network collapse will be developed.

- The goal of WP3 (Damage, Loss and Needs Assessment) is to develop the software for:
(a) the correlation of the tag data on local positioning with the structure that has emerged from the disaster, (b) the assessment of the structural response of the structure that has emerged from the disaster and (c) the assessment of damage, functionality, direct economic loss and needs for the monitored buildings.

- WP4 (Synergistic Damage Assessment with Air- and Space-borne Remote Sensing- Synoptic and Building-Specific Integration) focuses on calibrating/validating synoptic damage mapping based on satellite imagery, as well as detailed per building/infrastructure element specific damage assessment with airborne data, using the
sensor information from WP2-3.

- The objective of WP5 (The PCCDN Tool) is to develop a Post Crisis needs assessment tool in regards to Construction Damage and related Needs that can provide the required information to the disaster stakeholders within a week following a disaster. It will allow for customization and expansion so that it will eventually cover the assessment of all needs following a large number of crisis situations.

- The work in WP6 (System Integration) involves the system integration of both software and hardware components.

- The goal of WP7 (System Evaluation) is to evaluate the proposed system in the laboratory as well as in pilot scenarios simulating earthquake events and terrorist attacks.

- WP8 (Knowledge management and IPR Protection) involves all kinds of exploitation activities, the knowledge management and the IPR protection.

- WP9 (Dissemination Activities) involves dissemination of the project’s results and the liaison with the relevant stakeholders in the recovery area.

- WP10 (Consortium Management) involves the overall project, administrative and financial management at the level of the consortium.

PERT Chart displaying the Interdependencies between the WPs in RECONASS
All WPs receive input from WP10, Consortium Management.
All WPs provide input to WP8, Knowledge Management and IPR Protection and to WP9, Dissemination Activities.



This project is funded by the European Union