Supporting civil engineers during disaster response and recovery using a segway mobile workstation chariot

Feniosky Pea-Mora, Joyce K. Thomas, Mani Golparvar-Fard, Zeeshan Aziz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents a mobile workstation chariot (MWC) that enables first responders and civil engineers to undertake initial disaster reconnaissance and damage assessment operations by quickly traversing hazardous terrain and through provisioning of a necessary computing infrastructure to support real time communication with the command center. The MWC comprises a personal transporter equipped with on board communication equipment and computational processing capabilities to collect, archive, analyze, and report large quantities of data from a disaster site to provide better situation awareness of an emerging disaster scenario. In the case study presented here, the MWC uses a commercially available Segway Personal Transporter modified with a framework designed to carry a payload of information gathering and communication equipment. The MWC supports both horizontal and vertical real time data capture and transmission flow from first responders and civil engineers on the scene up to the command center by means of multilevel wireless voice and data communication infrastructures. This on board computational and visualization infrastructure allows for collecting, aggregating and deaggregating semiautomatic data, analyzing, recording, and reporting critical response and recovery information easily and quickly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)448-455
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Computing in Civil Engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2012


  • Data collection
  • Data communication
  • Data processing
  • Disasters
  • Mobility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Civil and Structural Engineering


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