Police: drones to access the source of the shots

Microphone arrays help identify the location of an urban shootout and quickly dispatch an autonomous drone there to survey the situation while police crews are en route.

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In more than 120 cities in the United States, the Caribbean and South Africa, law enforcement agencies have deployed microphone networks in certain so-called “hot” neighborhoods. Their mission: to identify and locate the blows of fire in order to deploy the police crews in the area as quickly as possible. Technologically, the process is quite simple, it involves triangulating the source of the shots by calculating the differences in milliseconds of the capture of each microphone.

With a reinforcement d’artificial intelligence (IA) and operators, we can then ensure that it is indeed a shot and not a firecracker, or any other sound like it. The process employed which was developed by the company ShotSpotter has a constraint difficult to eliminate: that of the time of the arrival of the police crews at the scene of the shooting. So to wait until the police arrive, ShotSpotter combined a drone autonomous to its detection system.

The ShotSpotter microphone array detection system can identify the location of a shot using AI. © ShotSpotter

A drone to examine the scene of a shooting

Designed by the Israeli manufacturer Airobotics, the drone takes off as soon as the shot is geolocated. He positions himself in the area of ​​the shooting and films the scene with his camera embedded. This process allows the crews to get a better idea of ​​the situation and to better prepare for it when they arrive on site.

the drone is completely autonomous and permanently in charge on its take-off base which is a large metal box. When returning from a mission, a robotic arm comes to exchange the discharged battery by a full one. Initially, it is in Israel that will be tested this combination of network of microphones and autonomous drones. The ShotSpotter company hopes that this system will facilitate the arrest of the perpetrators of the shootings. In her press release, she points out that out of 5,200 shootings that took place between 2017 and 2020 in Israel, only 575 were actually prosecuted, because the perpetrators were never found.

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