Sensors and Satellites Help Track Epidemics

The European Space Agency (ESA) reports that Giuseppe Ottavianelli and Aude de Clercq of the HISTAR Solutions in the Netherlands are currently working on a project, backed by ESA business incubator financing, to confirm the onset of malaria epidemics in Africa, as predicted by remote sensing data.

They have designed a prototype of a sensor located in a box that detects mosquitoes as they fly overhead. The data collected by the sensor is then processed by a program inside the box, which will be placed in hut hutches in high-risk African villages, and indicates the species and numbers of the mosquitoes detected.

Malaria is transferred by the female mosquito of the species Anopheles, so if the sensor detects her presence in high numbers, public officials will be alerted so that preventive measures can be put into place.

www.esa.int/esaCP/SEM5FINVGJE_Improving_0.html

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