KIWA - The innovative response to the increasing risk of forest fires

October 2023
3 min

Forest fires are on the rise worldwide, threatening ecosystems, economies and communities. In this blog post, we introduce you to KIWA, an integrated solution for the effective early detection of forest fires and the coordination of emergency services in real time. Find out how KIWA combats the growing risk of forest fires and what benefits it offers for various target groups.

The challenge: forest fires on the rise

In recent years, forest fires have increased worldwide, both in number and intensity. This threatening trend will continue to worsen in the coming years and decades, particularly due to climate change and longer periods of drought. To counter this growing threat, early detection of fire hotspots and improved coordination of all stakeholders are crucial.

Our answer: KIWA

KIWA is the innovative answer to the challenges posed by forest fires. It is a modular platform that operates in three successive stages: KIWA | PLAN, KIWA | MANAGE and KIWA | CONTROL. Let's take a closer look at these stages.

KIWA | PLAN: Daily risk assessment and resource planning

KIWA | PLAN provides emergency services with a daily updated forest fire risk assessment from the German Weather Service via an interactive dashboard. This enables efficient deployment planning and risk assessment. The solution also offers the option of recording reported fires directly in the dashboard and using topographical, weather-related and geolocalised information for optimal planning.

KIWA | MANAGE: Efficient deployment coordination in real time

KIWA | MANAGE goes beyond planning and integrates all relevant information from the emergency services in real time. This includes the locations of the emergency services, extinguishing water points, route planning and cross-departmental communication via chat and internet telephony. In addition, KIWA | MANAGE creates interfaces to local warning apps and enables residents to report suspected fires. Advanced artificial intelligence analyses the reports and locates the fire events on the dashboard.

KIWA | CONTROL: Early detection and alerting using drones and AI

The third stage, KIWA | CONTROL, utilises innovative technology. Drones with AI analysis systems detect sources of fire at an early stage and alert the emergency services automatically. The high-precision computer vision technology localises the fires on the KIWA dashboard to enable a fast and efficient response.

Why KIWA is better than the existing alternatives

Compared to existing methods of forest fire monitoring and suppression, KIWA clearly stands out. Here are some reasons why KIWA is a superior solution:

  • Propeller-driven aircraft and manned observation flights: the use of propeller-driven aircraft and manned observation flights requires significant human resources and is labour-intensive. KIWA, on the other hand, automates and optimises the early detection of forest fires, which reduces the dependence on manual operations.
  • Monitoring towers and permanently installed towers: Permanently installed monitoring towers are inflexible and cannot simply be moved to different locations. In some regions, towers from the GDR era are still in operation, which makes modernisation and adaptation to current requirements difficult. KIWA, on the other hand, enables flexible and demand-dependent monitoring in real time, regardless of fixed locations.
  • Air sensors: The use of sensors in forests for forest fire detection can be influenced by wind direction and other environmental factors. This leads to limited area coverage and inaccurate results. KIWA uses drones with image analysis software to accurately detect forest fires across a wide area, regardless of environmental conditions.
  • Satellites: Satellite imagery is often only updated once a day and therefore does not provide real-time monitoring. KIWA, on the other hand, provides real-time information on forest fires and enables a rapid response to minimise damage.

The KIWA drones with their image analysis software represent a flexible, automated and comprehensive solution that meets the current and future requirements for fighting forest fires. The use of KIWA increases efficiency, reduces response time and improves the safety of forests and communities.

The advantages of KIWA

The use of KIWA offers numerous advantages:

  1. Efficient prevention and coordination: KIWA enables efficient prevention of forest fires and optimal coordination of the emergency services in order to minimise ecological, economic and social damage.
  2. Integration of current weather data: By integrating daily updated weather data and real-time information, informed decisions can be made.
  3. Improved safety and effectiveness: KIWA increases the safety and effectiveness of forest firefighting, which is particularly important in acute situations.

Target groups for KIWA

KIWA is aimed at a variety of target groups, including:

  • Forest firefighting task forces: the solution supports the efficient coordination and deployment of resources.
  • Forestry authorities: KIWA provides valuable information for forest protection.
  • Environmental protection organisations: The solution contributes to the conservation of ecosystems.
  • Insurance companies: KIWA helps with damage minimisation and risk assessment.
  • Disaster control centres: The solution improves response capabilities in emergency situations.

KIWA effectively protects forests and communities from wildfires and provides a faster response and better coordination in the fight against this growing threat. With KIWA, we are one step closer to a sustainable solution to the global forest fire problem.

Are you interested in our project? Please get in touch.

We provide information about our research results and advise municipalities, states or anyone interested on effective measures for early forest and wildfire detection