08 July 2014

Smart@fire is a groundbreaking project to encourage companies and researchers, and provide them with the financial means to develop innovative ICT solutions that better protect firefighters and help prevent accidents, and to integrate them into ‘Smart Personal Protective Equipment’ (PPE). 

For this, Smart@fire employs a unique and novel method of innovative procurement known as pre-commercial procurement (PCP). The consortium of fire brigade procurers is now looking for new smart ICT based communication/localisation solutions to enable safer fire fighting. A call for tenders has been opened.

Every year, more than 100 firefighters lose their lives whilst saving others. The Smart@fire (2012-2015) project wants to reduce the risks inherent to firefighting.

To reduce these risks, innovative ICT-solutions need to be developed and integrated in the smart Personal Protective System. The current ICT-solutions available on the market do not yet provide full satisfaction.

Based on a large-scale needs assessment of 961 fire brigades, the innovation potential from the procurer’s side has been identified. To increase the safety of the fire fighters they are looking for innovative technologies, more in particular:

  • Sensors to measure environmental parameters and vital body functions
  • Localisation systems to determine the position
  • Data transfer and visualisation systems to better assess situations

All those innovations will have to be integrated in the 'Personal Protective Equipment' of fire fighters.

Overall objective

A smart ‘Personal Protective System’ (PSS) for individual firefighters, comprised of a ‘Personal Protective Equipment’ (PPE) turnout gear and loosely coupled ICT system. The ICT system integrates safety critical functions of a personal protection system of individual fire fighters, and acts as communication node for additional personal protection equipment as well as interface to the local centre of command. The system must be compliant with and needs to be fitted into the fire fighter turnout gear. 

The project is currently in phase 2 – pre-commercial procurement (PCP); the goal is to develop prototypes, with financial support of the European Commission, that meet the innovation expectations.

All the relevant tender documentation can be found on the Smart@fire website.