Tackling wildfires with data

Posted on 21 September 2018

A team of York students win the World Challenge 2018.

Returning to the World Challenge after placing fourth last year, Department of Computer Science undergraduates, Peter Jupp and Vishal Soomaney, and Department of Maths graduate, Flinn Dolman, were awarded the main prize at the sixth challenge final at the Nokia Experience Center in Espoo, Finland on 30 August.

The competition is co-hosted by the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), European Space Agency (ESA) and United Nations Technology Lab (UNTIL), with the goal of developing innovative services that use open-source satellite data to support sustainable development.

Wildfire AWARE’s winning service is a prediction model that uses advance machine learning techniques to forecast wildfires with an accuracy of 78%, in a bid to prevent or minimize their destruction.

In addition, the team also won a special prize from Microsoft for the best service using the Azure cloud system.