Friends of CRASAR
Friends of CRASAR is designed to help fund the Center for Robot-Assisted Search and Rescue in it's ongoing missions to Europe. As May 9, 2017, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reports that "49,164 people have risked their lives to reach Europe by sea so far in 2017 and 1,344 are feared drowned so far in 2017."
Through your generous support, the donations of Roboticists Without Borders member Hydronalix, and a small grant from the National Science Foundation, we gave the Hellenic Coast Guard and Hellenic Red Cross two EMILYs in 2016 which they use constantly to assist in lifeguarding. Meanwhile, Texas A&M students (undergrads and grads) at College Station and Corpus Christi have been working on "smart" EMILY-- a point and go autonomous system. "regular" EMILY requires 1 lifeguard to drive, which means 1 lifeguard can't be assisting with high-risk victims. If the lifeguard can give EMILY directions and be confident that she will perform her task, then the lifeguard can send her to lower-risk victims freeing the lifeguard to help someone in immediate trouble. Your support will help us return to Greece at the end of the summer with the completed smartEMILY for trials with the Hellenic Red Cross.