July 29, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

Chiarelli: Sam Koch’s impact evident in those who knew him best -

Monday, July 21, 2014

Longtime UMass men’s soccer coach Sam Koch dies after two-year battle with sinus cancer -

Monday, July 21, 2014

Southwest evacuated after gas leak -

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

UMass Rowing finishes NCAA Championships, ends year ranked No. 21 in the nation -

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Two UMass basketball alums to compete for a lofty prize in The Basketball Tournament -

Friday, May 23, 2014

Commencement Photos 2014 -

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Two arrested in relation to series of vandalism -

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Students push for relocation of the Center for Counseling and Psychological Health -

Monday, May 12, 2014

Video: No. 14 UMass WLAX ends season in loss to Loyola (MD) -

Saturday, May 10, 2014

No. 14 UMass women’s lacrosse season ends in loss to Loyola (MD) -

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Sixth inning rally propels UMass past Dayton 7-2 -

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

McMahon, Ferris and McGovern: Not your usual transfer story -

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Women’s lacrosse defeats Richmond 10-6 to win sixth straight A-10 Championship -

Sunday, May 4, 2014

No. 13 UMass women’s lacrosse knocks off Duquesne 16-3 to reach Atlantic 10 finals -

Friday, May 2, 2014

UMass one of 55 schools currently facing investigation over handling of sexual assault cases -

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Two thefts reported at library -

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Senior Columns 2013-2014 -

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

UMass Dining proposes major meal plan changes -

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

UMass baseball beats UConn for first time since 2007 -

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

MTV’s seemingly controversial new show proves to be ‘Faking It’ -

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

UMass engineering professor receives grant to fund emergency-response system

Courtesy of UMass.edu

A University of Massachusetts engineering professor was awarded a four-year, $1.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health for her continued research on a computerized disaster-management response system, according to a University press release.

Aura Ganz, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at UMass since 1987, was awarded the grant to help fund what she calls the DIORAMA II, an emergency-response system designed to quickly organize chaotic, mass-casualty disaster scenes with the goal of cutting evacuation time of survivors in half, according to the news release.

Such potential high-casualty incidents include airline, bus and train wrecks, according to the release.

DIORAMA is a map of a disaster scene on a computer screen, according to the release. The map can pinpoint the locations of all the medics and victims at the scene and allows the commander in charge of the incident’s emergency response to organize in a timely fashion.

DIORAMA II will run on a real-time framework built to collect data and accurately track resources in real time, while making the location of victims happen faster, detecting the most severely injured casualties and managing response teams in mass-casualty incidents, according to the release.

It’ll also enable rescue personnel to treat the most critically injured victims first and assign emergency resources to the areas of the disaster in most need, the release said, and it will alert hospitals located near the disaster to prepare for the arrival of patients beforehand.

“There are many large-scale disasters that happen with buses overturning, trains colliding, multi-car pileups, air crashes,” she said in the release. “It is very difficult when medical personnel arrive at a scene filled with chaos and debris and the victims spread all over the place and then try to carry out a fast and effective triage operation to save as many people as possible.”

DIORAMA II is the second generation of a prototype she completed in 2011 with the aid of a $4,000 exploratory NIH grant. Ganz was originally given funding by the National Science Foundation in 2004 to develop the technologies needed to receive a grant for her NIH proposal.

She began the project in 2006 and her proposal was approved for the grant in 2008. DIORAMA I, which she calls the first phase of a two-part procedure, took her three years to complete after receiving the grant.

However, Ganz was inspired to work on such a project well before the opportunity presented itself.

“I was actually thinking for quite a long time how this technology we developed can be put for the benefit of people, the betterment of society,” she said in a phone interview.

The purpose of this first-generation prototype, which she called the “exploratory stage,” is to present to the NIH why she deserves the chance to build the entire system.

“You have to prove how the system is a benefit to society, which means how it decreased evacuation time, which translates into a vast number of victims or higher survival rates of victims evacuated from a disaster,” she said.

After the prototype was built, it had to be tested on human subjects so she could show that it would serve beneficial, which had to be outlined in her proposal to NIH. The proposal was written for approval before that second phase could begin.

With this recent grant, Ganz is being asked by NIH to provide more immediate responses to mass-casualty events, which she believes could play a crucial role as to whether or not an injured individual can survive the occurrence.

“The first problem is the immediate response,” she said in the news release. “This is the most challenging issue in emergency management of a mass-casualty disaster, and this is the problem NIH is asking me to solve. The aim of the project is to streamline the triage process and significantly reduce the time it takes to rescue victims.”

Nick Canelas can be reached at ncanelas@student.umass.edu.

 

 

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