While millions of people around the world applauded the rescue of Thai school children and their soccer coach, and the importance that technology bought in this rescue mission was greatly celebrated. Human bravery, skills, and courage were skillfully supported by the technology that allowed an almost impossible rescue.
Let’s look at how these devices helped the rescue the Thai kids;
Disaster Control and Rescue
As soon as the drivers from Britain were deep enough and found the children, the next step was evaluating the point of entry for rescue. Drones flying over and around the mountain were used for this. These uncrewed aircraft had thermal cameras and optical lens with a 30X zoom capacity. In an era before the drones, rescuers and field experts had to explore any area physically for entry point assess. Drones identified and pre-select entry points only in just hours which could have been a number of days. With a strong forecast of rain, the drones helped for a quick rescue.
In addition, controlled underwater vehicles scanned the area more accurately. That is when Elon Musk also offered his support with a small submarine that was finally not utilized as there was not enough time.
Communication was required critically. Radio systems of traditional types require line of sight to communicate, and so were inefficient in the structures such as caves. In this mission, two communication systems of two varying epochs were implemented. The British team used ultra-low frequency detector radios which were used to penetrate the rocks for communications. But the biggest breakthrough came with the support of Maxtech Networks, an Israeli company, which allowed video, voice and data connectivity for a visual connection between trapped students and rescuers from abroad.
The system integrates series of small devices, similar to handheld radios, which transmit wireless communications to each other, enabling a link in places where regular radios don’t work, or where there are important objects or walls blocking the line of sight in-between two ends of a line.
Without technology, these Thai kids would have been dead by now, or the rescue operation would have recorded several casualties, but the use of technology ensured it wasn’t to be.