Over two days in August, to kick off Thai Space Week, GNSS.asia and Thailand’s Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (GISTDA) ran a Galileo and Smart RTK Hackathon – challenging participants to think outside the box. With one hackathon already completed this year, this was a good opportunity to introduce Galileo to a new region and to a new group of enthusiastic innovators.
Participating in the hackathon were 50 undergraduates, entrepreneurs, business owners and PhD candidates with backgrounds ranging from engineering, computer science, and GIS, to marketing, geodesy and business management. Their diversity was fantastic also, with a 45 to 55 female to male ratio. There were 10 teams in total, with 9 mentors helping the teams iron out kinks, understand how to use the technology and turn their ideas into incredible projects.
Watch this: Galileo & Smart RTK Hackathon
In order to give the teams a well-rounded understanding of the technological concepts behind Galileo and Smart RTK, the first day opened with interactive training sessions by Dr Anindya Bose, from the University of Bardwan, India, and Ms Darunee Promchot from GISTDA. They both gave the participants the fundamentals behind GNSS, Thailand’s G-PPS (GISTDA Precise Positioning System) RTK network and some hints about how to incorporate them into their applications. Varadarajan Krish, Managing Director, Induct AS, India, took the hackers through the hard and soft skills needed to take ideas from concept to reality.
The teams were challenged to develop a solution to provide one of the following:
• A user-friendly, fast and cost-efficient A-to-Z transport solution for Bangkok;
• Smart agriculture, focusing on high precision or automatization;
• A smart city solution for citizens who are disadvantaged and/or with health issues;
• Other smart solutions for Bangkok, Thailand or globally (travel, sustainability, logistics, food distribution, new services…) using Galileo or G-PPS;
• A smart mobile application platform for GNSS positioning in real-time, retrieved correction data from G-PPS to improve the accuracy of smartphone positioning called “Smart RTK.”
When it came to pitching time, the hackers did a superb job keeping to time and using the 10 slide template made especially for the occasion. There was a wide range of applications: GNSS-enabled ticketing to reduce traffic accidents; drone delivery for food, medical devices and urgent packages; outdoor/indoor 3D mapping for more effective firefighting; automatic ripeness assessment of fruit combining unpiloted aerial vehicles (UAVs) and GNSS; farming automation to mitigate rural depopulation to sustain farming into the future generations; driverless tractors with low cost GNSS receivers; and, identification of plant diseases using UAVs.
And the winners were…
The judges were impressed with the professionalism of all the pitches. Deliberations to award the prizes were passionate and almost heated, but a consensus was reached.
Smart RTK Prize: Team FarmFellow.
Solution: Digital platform for agricultural farmers for farm mapping, crop selection and farm monitoring.
Galileo Prize: Team Fling RTK.
Solution: Fling is using drones to deliver urgently-needed goods to city residents using multi-constellation GNSS and RTK to prevent jamming and position and land its drones safely and accurately.
Best Prize: Team – Second Eyes
Solution: EmergMap – Reducing costs due to fire damage for complex buildings, using 3D mapping, sensors and G-PPS technology to extinguish the fire efficiently and safely.
Congratulations to the winners and to all the teams involved. The event would not have been the success it was without the energy that they brought, the ideas that they had and the dedication to pitching such well researched and brilliantly delivered solutions using Galileo and the Thai GPPS network.
GNSS.asia is a Horizon 2020 project of the European GNSS Agency (GSA) that aims to stimulate the creation of partnerships between GNSS industries in Europe and Asia, while supporting institutional cooperation and encouraging Galileo adoption. It offers several services, including industry matchmaking and international cooperation events. GNSS.asia has permanent teams in Europe, India, China, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan.
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