Imagine yourself as a fireman called out to rescue workers from a factory burning with combustible gas. Or, imagine yourself in the army, serving in Afghanistan, and called out to inspect a building with potentially armed and dangerous people. Wouldn’t you like to see inside the building before entering?
This is the type of situations that inspired David Young, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, to invent the imaging ball that he launched at DEMO 2013 last week. His company, Bounce Imaging, sells a throw-able, 360 degree imaging and sensor ball for first responders. Now police officers, fire responders and industrial operators can see inside a burning or gas-filled room before sending people in. The responder simply throws the wireless ball into the room. The ball has six sensors that fire every half second. The ball knows the trajectory of the throw and takes multiple 360 degree images mid-flight.
The images are wirelessly transmitted to and re-constructed on a phone or tablet screen. In addition to imaging, additional sensors can be added. Environmental sensors such as temperature, oxygen level, and combustible gas threat sensors can augment the photo to provide first responders with more information to work with. The technology, when available later this year, will keep thousands of everyday heroes safer on their jobs.
Learn more in this video interview…
Connie Kwan is a Lead Product Manager at Atlassian, a software company that gives back by donating all starter-license profit to Room to Read. Over $2M has been donated so far. Kwan holds an MBA in Sustainability from Presidio Graduate School, and covers stories on technology and sustainability. Follow her on Twitter @conniemkwan.