CAUSE V: The Canada-US Enhanced Resiliency Experiment wraps-up in the PNW

The fifth experiment in the Canada-US Enhanced Resiliency Experiment Series (CAUSE V) was held on November 15-16, 2017 in the lower mainland of British Columbia (BC), Canada and Washington State (WA), US.

Abbotsford EOC during the CAUSE V Experiment

Abbotsford EOC during the CAUSE V Experiment

CAUSE V focus areas covered a number of topics related to cross-border communications interoperability, such as cross-border public safety broadband wireless capabilities; digital volunteers to augment emergency operations; robots for search and rescue and scene mapping; and shared situational awareness and information sharing.

The CAUSE V experiment resulted in the following technological milestones:

  • Wireless Networks- The experiment validated that LTE technology for public safety broadband networks has the ability to operate in co-channel interference environments, and provided a first of its kind demonstration of congestion-based session persistence, where a user in a fixed location covered by two networks could toggle from one network to another under congested conditions
  • Robots- Three teams of unmanned aerial system (UAS) and unmanned aerial system unmanned maritime vehicle (UMV) operators streamed videos to the participating emergency operation centers (EOCs) over the experimental wireless network, captured imagery for orthomosaic maps, and conducted water-based search and rescue missions.
  • Sensor Integration- Integration of vibration and water sensors, leveraging the wireless network to provide real-time access to environmental data provided by a broadband-enabled Internet of Things (IoT).
  • Spatial-Temporal Information Products- Time-based lahar map supported participants with logistical planning requirements.
  • Field Reporting- Successfully tracked locations of deployed personnel using Drakontas DragonForce and tested sending field reports using Esri-based digital reporting tools (Survey123). This was the first CAUSE experiment to successfully combine data, applications and wireless networks.
  • System Integration – Bidirectional information sharing between two different platforms (ArcGIS Online and Drakontas DragonForce) was achieved by integrating the systems using an open REST API.
  • Vehicle and Personnel Tracking- Location of vehicles and personnel were tracked in real-time and superimposed on maps and dashboards at multiple EOCs and within applications available to the field teams.
  • Digital Volunteers for Social Media Monitoring- CAUSE V spurred the creation of the Cascadia virtual operations support team (VOST), facilitating social media for emergency management training for members from the U.S. and Canadian digital volunteer teams. The VOST operated during CAUSE V, monitoring social media content, producing listening reports, and identifying actionable social media posts using standardized web-based forms, which have been activated for real-world emergencies since the conclusion of the experiment.
  • Interactive Dashboards – Participants used Operations Dashboards to monitor real-time events, operational status, and other reports. These dashboards were configured with various widgets (e.g., bar charts, summary lists) to represent the live status of key data layers in an interactive and visually engaging way.
Example of an Operations Dashboard used during CAUSE V

Example of an Operations Dashboard used during CAUSE V

  • COP Enhancements – The common operating picture (COP) leveraged by participants during the experiment included live updates from many different sources on both sides of the border, as well as authoritative hazard data about the volcanic scenario. The COP included new features that have never been tested before during the CAUSE series, including the ‘Virtual CAUSE’ (vCAUSE) widget that lets users add web maps into their operating picture from trusted information providers.

Learn more about the CAUSE experiment through this interactive Story Map:

Click here to view the Story Map in a new window.

Other Resources:

  • Click here to learn about the Data Lifecycle and other information products from the CAUSE series that were transitioned to the NISC.
  • Click here to download the CAUSE V After Action Report.
  • Click here to find out more about the other CAUSE Experiments.
  • NISC Webinar “CAUSE V – Capstone to the Five-Year Cross Border Experiment Series” : DOWNLOAD SLIDEDECK | VIEW RECORDING