On Assignment
Five Ways that the SCDF is Turning Robocop into Reality
How the Singapore Civil Defence Force is pursuing technological innovation to save and protect lives.

It’s about strengthening the Singapore Civil Defence Force’s (SCDF) operational edge and enhancing the capabilities of its frontline responders. 

During the SCDF’s annual Workplan Seminar 2018 on 18 April 2018, we caught a glimpse of the future of the Life Saving Force through a showcase of robotics, analytics and smart solutions for tomorrow’s emergency responders. Here are five highlights. 
1. Red Rhino Robot (3R)

25 Apr 2018 SCDF WPS 3R Robot

Measuring 0.91 metres long, 0.45 metres wide, 0.6 metres high and weighing about 80kg, the 3R will be stowed in the newly launched 6th Generation Light Fire Attack Vehicle. PHOTO: Aizil A Rahim

The 3R is a compact and portable emergency responder robot that can be deployed to extinguish a fire remotely. The 3R is also capable of autonomous heat detection and extinguishment, meaning it can be relied upon to fight fires while the crew maintains a safe distance. This mitigates risk and allows fire-fighters to focus on more urgent tasks. 

2. Exoskeleton 

25 April 2018 SCDF Workplan Seminar WPS Exoskeleton
A quick release catch on the Exoskeleton allows the responder to jettison the machine swiftly in an emergency.

The SCDF Exoskeleton project is the brainchild of the SCDF and the Office of the Chief Science & Technology Officer (OCSTO) in the Ministry of Home Affairs. First conceptualised in 2013, the exoskeleton makes operations less physically demanding by reducing the stress placed on the responder and transferring the equipment load from the fire-fighter onto the machine. 

Air-pressure mechanisms installed on the legs of the Exoskeleton assist by “pushing” the responder up flights of stairs. Relieved of physical strain, the responder can then focus on tackling any emergency more efficiently. The Exoskeleton prototype is currently undergoing further testing and enhancements. 

3. Indoor Tracking and Monitoring of Operations

25 Apr 2018 SCDF Workplan Seminar Indoor Tracking
SCDF is conducting a proof-of-concept trial to track responders within indoor settings. PHOTO: Aizil A Rahim

Another proof-of-concept initiative showcased by the SCDF is the Home Team Networked Officer Project which tracks responders within indoor settings through the use of wearable sensors. The SCDF commanders will be able to track fire-fighters within a building during operations and monitor their vital signs, equipment status and the ambient environment. This gives SCDF commanders a broader situational awareness and equips them to make better command decisions in an emergency. 

4. Next-Generation Emergency Appliances

25 April 2018 SCDF Workplan Seminar WPS HAZMAT
Early detection and monitoring of the plume movement is crucial for effective mitigation of the incident. PHOTO: Aizil A Rahim

The SCDF also unveiled two new additions to its crew of emergency appliances, an enhanced HazMat Control Vehicle (HCV) and the Dart Rescue Vehicle (DRV). The enhanced HCV is equipped with a Chemical Standoff Detector, which conducts long-range detection and monitoring of chemicals up to a distance of 5km. It also houses an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Launch Pad and two Mobile Transporters so that monitoring operations can be conducted quickly. 

25 Apr 2018 DART Rescue Vehicle SCDF WPS Workplan Seminar
The new DRV integrates the existing Special Rescue Tender and the Heavy Rescue Tender, which have different capabilities, onto a single platform.

The new DRV combines the existing Special Rescue Tender and the Heavy Rescue Tender into a single vehicle to provide simultaneous response capabilities for a variety of rescue incidents. The DRV will have modular capabilities; it can be loaded with urban search and rescue modules, or act as a carrier for the Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team’s (DART) Heli-bucket or Skid Loader. It will also come with a personnel cabin, which allows DART members to be briefed and suited up en route to a rescue.  

5. Project OMNII

The Operation Medical Networks Information Integrator Project (or Project OMNII) was first broached at the SCDF’s 2016 Workplan Seminar. OMNII will allow the SCDF’s paramedics to receive relevant patient records from the National Electronic Health Record System. 

By accessing patient information such as medical histories and drug allergies, Emergency Medical Service personnel can make more accurate assessments and also provide better pre-hospital emergency care. Phase 1 of Project OMNII is expected to commence in 2020.
© 2019 Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore. All Rights Reserved.

  1. by Desmond Ang
  2. 25 April 2018
Back to top