Calgary company’s mapping techniques helps Thai rescue effort
Published Sunday, July 8, 2018 5:40PM MDT
Last Updated Sunday, July 8, 2018 6:41PM MDT
A Calgary company is pitching in to help out in the rescue of a group of young Thai soccer players who have been trapped in an underground cave since late June.
Intermap Technologies, which has an office here in the city, says it got a call from authorities in the Thai government shortly after news broke about the team’s plight.
Using special technology and sensors, the firm was able to construct a three-dimensional image of the interior of the cave, a vital piece of data that greatly helps in the rescue effort.
“We create a 3D rendering of the surface, the underground, the cave, the likely points where people could be, how the water is going to flow, what potential entry and exit points are, how deep it is,” said Patrick Blott, Intermap CEO.
Blott said that the map also helped determine the best ways for teams to shorten the journey for the trapped youth in such a way to preserve their safety and the safety of crew members.
Intermap delivered the model to Thai authorities in just about three hours.
Blott says the mapping also helped them foresee how the situation could change with different circumstances and allowed them to monitor those conditions.
“As water levels rise, where is it likely to go, that kind of modelling. We are constantly monitoring and working on that. What’s happening now is they’re using the dye paths and the extractions begun and hopefully we’ll get done fairly rapidly.”
Four of the 12 boys were rescued from the cave in northern Thailand on Sunday. That leaves eight boys and their coach still in the cave as crew members work to replace oxygen tanks along the route for a second attempt on Monday.
(With files from The Associated Press)