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A Cutting-Edge Solution

A Building IOT sensor based cloud & local edge computing solution for wireless emergency location communication. 

It is only the reliable floor-level information matters.

Currently, the communication technologies adopted by commercial mobile radio service providers and mobile network operators can not provide indoor location service with floor-level certainty, especially in power outages. The network-based cell tower MBS ( Metropolitan Beacon System), and handset-based barometric pressure altitude estimation of Height Above Ellipsoid (HAE) proclaim that the best they can do is to meet the -/+ 3-meter vertical standard. 

There is virtually a technological impasse facing the wireless communication industry in providing precise and reliable incident floor-level information for wireless emergency calls. It frustrates PSAP dispatchers, First Responders of Fire, Police & Ambulance when no real-time, actionable indoor location data is readily available on request. The remarks by FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, as quoted above, are a ringing echo of such frustration.

FCC has required an independently administered testbed for official stage Z testing by available technological approaches, such as barometric pressure-based altitude estimation. The report (pages 121-122) shows there are still many issues that are baffling all, such as, 

  • There is a big question mark on real-world performance and use of the barometric pressure-based altitude estimation when the device calibration varies between the different models of mobile devices, and the accuracy degrades with the age of the sensor.
  • The performance differs vastly in rural morphologies, freezing weather, high winds level dispatchable location mandate, etc.
  • How could altitude be accurately converted into building floor level for pressure-based estimation systems?

All these bafflings point to one big question:

How can accurate and reliable floor-level actionable emergency locations be possible? 

A solution lies inside the buildings. Getting to the bottom of this question will need to ignite some thinking outside the box. If satellites deployed in the sky can help locate emergency callers horizontally on earth, mimicking such a satellite system inside the buildings for emergency vertical locations is a no-brainer. Any permanent in-building facilities can play this role so long they can connect the callers’ equipment that commits the 911 call. It is technologically feasible to use the intelligent sensors/controllers of the building facilities for that purpose. Preferably, it has power backup to support both online and offline data access for fetching emergency indoor spatial data of the incident, prioritizing locating the distressed caller’s whereabouts. Such a feature is crucial for assisting the finding of people trapped inside the buildings.

The defunct NEAD (National Emergency Address Database) that references the 911 callers’ emergency addresses by cell towers and internet access points proves unreliable for regularly finding distressed callers. It is understandable to be recalcitrant to a stringent floor-level information mandate/standard, such as the dispatchable vertical location to be solely shouldered by the mobile network operators because they don’t have the resources and capacity to do so.

It is a matter of building safety. There is a rationale to believe that the indoor dispatchable location is more than a matter for the wireless communication industry. It is fundamentally a building safety issue. The NFPA building codes explicitly require facilities, such as emergency lighting, fire alarm, smoke alarm &, etc., to provide compulsory emergency safety and protection to all occupants. Empowering these facilities to give rise to the indoor locations of the emergency callers is also about protecting occupants’ safety and general welfare.

Therefore, the dispatchable location extends to the regime of the building regulations which local jurisdiction, ie. Councils and local government building safety bodies, and Fire Marshals shall have the power to implement such building safety measures and policies.

No more misaventures. The growing issue is that the automatic PSTN telephone address has become obsolete, leaving 911 callers’ locations unknown inside complex buildings. Without explicit verbal confirmation by the caller with the emergency call center over the phone, it is impossible to locate the caller. The brutal reality is that people who call 911 but can not communicate to share their precise locations inside buildings risk losing lives. Incidents of those are often treated as misadventures. Taking such incidents for granted is not OK when today’s rampant in-building innovative wireless technologies are technically capable of protecting the public in providing indoor emergency locations.

No man is left behind in emergencies inside buildings.

An Emergency Digital Twin.

The IndoorSoS™ runs a cloud and a local edge mapping engine responsible for computing the caller’s indoor location. The groups of clustered IDs and internet communication access addresses are indexed, referenced & bound to the data source of the physical locations of the points of interest, such as room number, at floor level. They are stored in the local networking server and the cloud server, forming a digital twin of a critical database of the Emergency locations. 

This digital twin collects and processes the real-time synchronized data from the sensors/controllers, which can also interact with the caller’s equipment on the caller’s demand in an emergency. Such communication can provide the baseline indoor position of the callers in response to his 911 call. An AI algorithm maneuvers the datasets and continually gains knowledge of the dynamics RF data of the facilities at their physical locations to enhance the baseline emergency positioning result. The emergency caller’s real-time location data are subsequently compiled into an Emergency Incident Data Document (EIDD) compliant with the latest i3 Next Generation 9-1-1 standards. The emergency call center/PSAP dispatchers and the field responders can then share the EIDD of the complete GPS & the indoor emergency location file over the Emergency Service Internet (Esinet) through the first responder communication network, such as the FirstNet™,

IndoorSOS™ supports the public officials of emergency services with vital supplementary alerting resource data of indoor emergency locations at accurate floor levels. The current emergency response system is missing such essential dispatchable location data. 

In the local power outages of emergency events in high-interest buildings, the IndoorSoS’s onsite online & offline access power-backup system shall enable onsite wireless indoor location communication to fetch the critical in-building data, including the emergency locations alerted by the 911 callers. It provides the field responders with a vital onsite tool to find the distressed 911 callers trapped inside.

An emergency indoor location service that works at any time, including in power outages. In the local power outages of emergency events, the IndoorSoS’s onsite online & offline access power-backup system shall enable onsite wireless indoor location communication to fetch the critical in-building data, including the emergency  locations alerted by the 911 callers. It provides the field responders with a vital tool to find the distressed 911 callers trapped inside.


The intelligent sensors that survive power outages become the ‘satellite’ to position the distressed callers. The geographical information of the callers’ floor level, room number, and civic address is represented on an Open Geo-Coding standard indoor emergency map.

Emergency Indoor Locations Save Lives


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