2005 Esri Homeland Security GIS Summit Presentations

The Esri Homeland Security GIS Summit is a compilation of professional papers delivered September 11–14, 2005, in Denver, Colorado. Esri users contributed a fundamental part to the conference by submitting and presenting their presentations on a diverse collection of GIS applications. The proceeds promote GIS application by stimulating users to share their experiences and knowledge.

Plenary Session

Opening Address [PDF-3.09 MB]
Jack Dangermond, President, Esri

Collaboration, Information ,and Data Sharing in Large Cities [PDF-12.3 MB]
Jeremy Harris, Former Mayor, City and County of Honolulu, Hawaii

GIS Application Development and Implementation in Maryland [PDF-2.79 MB]
John M. Morgan, III, Ph.D. and Matthew S. Felton, Towson University Center for Geographic Information Sciences

Homeland Security for the Electric, Utility Industry—Actions, Priorities, and Challenges [PDF-1.95 KB]
Barry Lawson, Manager, Power Delivery, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA)

Tsunami Pacific Disaster Relief [PDF-1.49 MB]
Craig Chellis, Pacific Disaster Center

Understanding The Big Picture [PDF-2.07 MB]
Jill Boulton, Norwich Union

Paper Presentation Sessions


GIS Interoperability in Kentucky's Chemical Stockpile Preparedness Program
Jim Fries, PlanGraphics

Kentucky's Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP) is responsible for planning and responding to incidents at a chemical weapons storage facility at the Blue Grass Army Depot in Central Kentucky. State and local CSEPP participants relied entirely on paper maps until 2002 when the State CSEPP office began an ongoing effort to establish and expand GIS and interoperable software capability. The presentation will describe CSEPP's logical-phased development of an interoperable GIS for a 10-county region surrounding the depot, beginning with desktop GIS and expanding to ArcIMS and portal services over three years and CSEPP's applicability as an exemplary model for introducing GIS and interoperable software capability for medium- and small-sized communities that have significant homeland security and emergency preparedness concerns and responsibilities.
New Jersey Emergency Preparedness Information Network
Bruce Harrison, New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety

In an effort to provide the New Jersey Homeland Security community with the ability to more effectively plan for, respond to, and recover from man-made and natural disasters, the state has embarked on an aggressive initiative known as the Emergency Preparedness Information Network (EPINet). Through the development of EPINet, a unified Geospatial Enterprise Architecture (GEA) will evolve, supporting information sharing and integration across all levels of government. The framework that supports EPINet utilizes a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) that follows the "Build it once, use it many times" philosophy of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI). Through the development of EPINet, New Jersey is positioning itself to not only support the needs of the homeland security community but better support the overall business of government. A key to realizing EPINet has been the establishment of a sustainable set of infrastructure and policies through the development of strategic partnerships with local government.
TNM-SOLDGR for Use in Homeland Security and First Response
John Leahy, Optimal Geomatics, Inc.

The National Map is a consistent framework for geographic knowledge representing the nation. It provides public access to high-quality, geospatial data and information from multiple partners to help resource managers and the public make informed decisions. The National Map is a United States Geological Survey (USGS) project supported by a consortium of federal, state, and local partners to enhance America's ability to access, integrate, and apply geospatial data at global, national, and local scales. The USGS Department of Defense Earth Science Program is exploiting The National Map through the Strategic On-Line Defense Geography Repository (SOLDGR). SOLDGR is a password-protected geospatial viewer that allows access to secure DoD data and other agencies' data through partnership agreements. SOLDGR is a one-stop source for geospatial data through a thin-client mechanism. SOLDGR utilizes the Web service-based architecture of The National Map, and data display and extraction are supported by servers located nationwide.

Command and Control

Adding Geospatial Value to CAP Alerting
Fred Granum, RAINS

The OASIS Common Alerting Protocol (CAP) standardizes content for all hazards alert notification across multiple domains. CAP overcomes conflicting technologies, protocols, and procedures enhancing emergency incident management, exercises, and drills. CAP is used for notification, drills, updates, and alert cancellations. The city of Portland manages a system that processes thousands of incidents and advisories daily. Data from NOAA and two metro 911 centers enters the system; the system then converts them into CAP-formatted alerts. The alerts are filtered based on a publisher-defined set of thresholds. Simultaneously, maps are associated with the alerts prior to distribution. The structured data format allows precise multifactor targeting, meaning users receive only relevant alerts. This presentation will also highlight how this system worked during a recent, actual tsunami warning in the Pacific Ocean.
A Spatial-Based Mobile Incident Command and Accountability System
Chris Couper, IBM

This paper describes a full featured, at scene, emergency responder incident management system utilizing wireless networking, portable and handheld computers, and geospatial context-based applications to help manage and control emergency responder-based incidents. An extensive spatially based mobile computing platform using Esri MapObjects and a relational database system has been developed. The application is NIMS compliant and uses a touch/select paradigm. The system incorporates features to manage the tactical response to emergency incidents; works under a unified command structure; and provides spatially based features to plan, document, and manage the response to any type of emergency incident. A demonstration of a multiagency bomb threat response will be provided.
The Utilization of GIS in Nuclear Emergency Response in Pennsylvania
James Barnhart, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection

Nuclear emergency response to potential and real nuclear power plant emergencies has been one of the major responsibilities of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Radiation Protection (PA DEP-BRP). GIS technology is being utilized for spatial information flow during the nuclear emergency response drills for the nine nuclear power reactors in the commonwealth. The PA DEP-BRP nuclear emergency response staff, in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State University’s Environmental Resource Research Institute (ERRI), has developed a tailored GIS application on Esri ArcView 9 and ArcView GIS 3.2 software. This particular software application provides the following major functions: It creates on-the-fly custom maps that spatially show several data layers pertinent to nuclear power plants, and it quickly imports and spatially displays radioactive plume projections and data from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Radiological Assessment System for Consequence Analysis (RASCAL 3.0.4) software. This paper describes this work in progress to date.

Critical Infrastructure Protection

A Community Framework for Critical Infrastructure Protection
David DiSera, EMA, Inc., and Robert Samborski, GITA

As part of a National Geospatial Initiative for Critical Infrastructure Protection (NGI-4-CIP), the Geospatial Information and Technology Association developed a pilot program to facilitate an interactive dialog among a broad spectrum of infrastructure and emergency management stakeholders in defined geographic areas. This pilot program, known as Geospatially Enabling Community Collaboration, or GECCo, is based on the highly successful ROADIC system in Japan. To date, two GECCo workshops in Honolulu and Denver have been conducted to identify barriers to collaboration, develop requirements for effective data management, establish guidelines for interoperability, and create a process to successfully share data. The findings from these intensive workshops will be presented. This presentation will also include a summary of the GECCo concept and process and related plans for additional workshops and pilot projects in the near future. Relationships to the National Spatial Data Infrastructure as well as the emerging DHS enterprise architecture will be discussed.
An Ontology-Driven GIS Approach to Scenario-Based Critical Infrastructure Protection Planning
Robert McNally, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Critical infrastructures (CI) have become a top concern for government operations and business continuity because of the reliance on technology and the interdependent nature of these systems. These have potentially increased the system's vulnerability to cascading failures and sabotage. As a tool to deal with uncertainties, scenarios are widely regarded to be effective in various CIP planning activities. However, current methods to compose these scenarios are inadequate when viewed from a quadruple view of CI interdependencies that exist. In this paper, ontology of critical infrastructure knowledge implemented in a proposed CIP planning support system (CIP-PSS) and a scenario composition protocol is utilized to compose, explain, and visualize scenarios based on geographic and functional knowledge of CI systems. These scenarios demonstrate the interdependencies between infrastructures and the concurrent vulnerabilities of CI in a more effective manner than current methods. This approach is employed in a case study of a large urban center in the United States.
Boston Preparedness Project Two Years Later: Recommendations in Action
Michael Terner and Richard Grady, Applied Geographics, Inc.

During 2002–2003 several state, federal, and local agencies participated in the Boston Preparedness Pilot Project. Sponsored by NOAA, this project conducted numerous research and critical infrastructure (CI) data collection activities. A final report that made a series of recommendations was published in September 2003. Since publication, several of these recommendations have been explored further and carried out. This presentation focuses on two case study examples of recommendations that were followed and the findings of those efforts. The first recommendation was that better global data schemas for CI data were necessary and desirable. Work completed as part of NGA’s/Esri’s Project Homeland and the National Capital Region pilot will be presented. The second recommendation was that online tools for distributed CI data collection will help improve data accuracy and currency. Work for the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency to automate the creation of comprehensive emergency management plans through the eCEMP project will be presented.
GIS and High-Resolution Oblique Imagery for Homeland Security
Art Kalinski, Atlanta Regional Commission

Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) has pioneered the use of high-resolution oblique imagery with GIS data for land use planning, environmental data development, transportation planning/data capture, and homeland security. ARC has been conducting a pilot project using GIS data and imagery to enhance 911 call centers, field response units, and as a portable GIS operation for rapid deployment to emergency field command sites. The presentation will report the results of NGA homeland security grant funding for imagery and GIS data covering the entire 10-county region. In addition, security preplanning at the G8 Summit in Georgia; emergency response and mitigation during a fire and chemical spill in Atlanta; and recent SWAT team planning in the apprehension of fugitive Terry Nichols, the courtroom shooter, will also be reviewed.

Protection and Preparedness

Forecasting, Modeling and Risk Assessment in Ukrainian National Level System
Oleksiy Ischuk and Dmitry Kushnir, USC

A National System on Disaster Management became a priority for the Ukrainian government following the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster. After this global incident, a number of internationally funded projects took place in Ukraine. Using the expertise of local scientists and software developers, these projects became a base for the development of the Ukrainian Government Information and Analytical System on Emergency Situations (GIAS ES) to manage the different kinds of data that must be integrated and to facilitate a number of simulation and optimization tools. GIS applications from Esri were selected to be part of the Modeling and Analytical Subsystem.
Protecting and Preparing Infrastructures with GIS-Enhanced Communications
Andrew Alpert, National Notification Network (3n)

Today’s GIS technology is adapted for an endless number of uses and situations. Recent global crises have shown the mission-critical role mapping technologies play in responding to emergencies. As organizations realize the importance of communications in executing disaster response strategies, GIS technology can play a greater role in elevating existing systems to new levels of applicability. This presentation will highlight case studies on tsunami recovery efforts and a branch of the U.S. Army benefiting from communications strategies that leverage geomapping functionality. Attendees will gain new insight into emerging tools that capitalize on this technology. Such communication systems are top-of-mind for senior executives and are drawing the attention of research experts at the analyst firm Gartner. Attendees will learn how to examine an organization’s structure and potential vulnerabilities to prepare for disasters and how to effectively address those issues and ensure the protection of assets and constituents with appropriate communication strategies and tools.
Regional Hazardous Materials Emergency Response Supported by ArcReader
Dwayne Mundy, NCFRPC

The North Central Florida Regional Hazardous Materials Response Team protects citizens from chemical releases in an 11-county region that covers 7,000 square miles. The team responds to toxic releases in locations where other agencies may have done the preplanning. The team is using ArcReader to organize all available emergency planning information on a hazmat laptop. This provides incident commanders with a useful tool for making critical public safety decisions. Florida has an aggressive emergency preparedness program including hazmat planning. The application provides access to critical facilities, chemical storage locations, vulnerability assessments, and chemical release scenarios. This is combined with aerial photography and a variety of data layers. In 2004, the team had the top score out of 208 applications in the highly competitive Florida emergency management grant program. The team is the first multicounty, multiagency hazmat team in Florida.
Waterborne Transport Modeling for Homeland Security
William Samuels, SAIC

Waterborne transport modeling tools have been developed that simulate the fate and transport of chemical, biological, and radiological contaminants in source water and within the distribution system. These tools consist of (1) RiverSpill's real-time, time-of-travel, and dispersion model; (2) PipelineNet's water distribution hydraulic and water quality model; and (3) the Incident Command Tool for Drinking Water Protection (ICWater). RiverSpill is a GIS-based tool that provides the ability to model using real-time stream flow data, the time-of-travel, and concentration of toxic substances at public water supply intakes. PipelineNet is a GIS-based system that integrates hydraulic and water quality models with existing spatial databases. ICWater integrates multiple sources of information to give decision makers concise summaries of current conditions and forecasts of future consequences of terrorist acts on public water supply safety.

Surveillance and Situational Awareness

LEADS: The Essential Elements of a 3-D Geographic Coordinate

Prior to the deployment of Global Positioning System, geographic coordinates were typically described as two-dimensional (2-D) entities in terms of latitude and longitude. Today, GPS receivers display geogaphic coordinates in three dimensions (3-D) in terms of latitude, longitude, and elevation. GPS receivers are imbedded in numerous applications linked through databases and networks to other applications capable of producing 2-D and 3-D geographic coordinates of varying accuracies. LEADS provides a common frame of reference for envisioning and describing the five essential elements of a three dimensional geographic coordinate.

LEADS simply and clearly organizes essential information needed to compare geographic coordinates from different sources that may be of varying accuracies and on different datums. LEADS provides a structured methodology for comparing geographic coordinates that may facially appear to be the same location, but on closer examination reveal substantial differences in elevation, accuracy, datum, and source. LEADS may be helpful as a construct for integrating information between applications, for designing new applications, and to end users as a template for evaluating the suitability of a geographic coordinate for a particular purpose. LEADS could be useful as a standard for designing interoperable networks that depend on the efficient and organized machine-to-machine transfer of geographic coordinates from myriad sources.

USAF GeoReach Using ArcIMS to Provide Situational Awareness
Mark McKercher, EarthTech, Inc.

The success and maturity of the GeoReach planning tool to deliver situational awareness of USAF forward-operating locations in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) has enabled the deputy undersecretary of defense for Installations and Environment to explore opportunities for technology transfer to other organizations in need of up-to-date, accurate site information from a single, authoritative source. Homeland security and defense requirements both at home and abroad dictate up-to-date situational awareness be available for operational planning and preparedness. The GeoReach ArcIMS Web service provides the site-specific information required by decision makers to make informed and collaborative operational decisions regarding situational awareness for force protection, threat assessment, and emergency response. This presentation will include an overview of the GeoReach program, highlight current DoD efforts to establish standard architectures, and discuss transformational approaches to integrating HLS datasets in an effort to provide an up-to-date common operational picture.
Use of GIS for Planning Visual Surveillance Installations
Sanjay Rana, University College London

Visual Surveillance is now commonplace in modern societies. Generally, the layout of observers in artificial visual surveillance (e.g., CCTV camera) involves an iterative, manual and gut-feel process of trying various layouts until a satisfactory solution has been found. This paper proposes how a GIS, can be used to identify the optimal number and locations of observers, ensuring complete visual coverage using an automated technique, namely Rank and Overlap Elimination (ROPE). The ROPE technique is a greedy-search method, which iteratively selects the most visibly dominant observer with minimum overlapping vistas. The paper also proposes measurements to characterize the shape of open spaces, relevant in assessing natural surveillance. The paper demonstrates an extension, called Isovist Analyst, to the popular ArcView for planning artificial and natural surveillance in indoor and outdoor open spaces, with arbitrary geometry and topology.

Vendor Solutions

ARIES: Airborne Rapid Imaging for Emergency Support
Joel Campbell, EarthData Solutions, LLC

ARIES is a DHS-sponsored rapid response mapping, communication, and data dissemination system designed to provide geospatial information during crises and is being developed in four phases. Phase 1 validated ultrahigh-speed downlink and mobile processing facility capabilities in a controlled relevant scenario.

Under a grant from the Department of Homeland Security, phase 1 culminated in a live system demonstration held on November 17, 2004, at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey. Phase 1 integrated capabilities to (1) collect airborne data using digital camera, lidar, and thermal sensor systems; (2) transmit data over a micromillimeter wave (MMW) air-to-ground link; and (3) process data in a mobile, self-sustaining command-and-operations center. The demonstration produced data within three hours of data acquisition and indicated a potential for achieving near real-time response. Phase 1 results support continuing the four-phase ARIES development leading to operational readiness and sustainment of a national rapid response production system.
Integrating Mobile Resources Into the Homeland Security Enterprise
W. Brant Howard, CompassCom, Inc.

The interoperability of real-time mobile resources and sensor data with wireless technology into the Homeland Security Enterprise is enabling users to make informed decisions that improve command, control, and response times. Radio communications that depend on voice queries of, Where are you, what is your status? requires time and is an inefficient use of wireless bandwidth. Automatic vehicle location systems (AVL) are now evolving with the ability to track individuals, sensors (including RFID), aircraft, watercraft, and nearly any resource that provides a location-based message. These types of data allow homeland security professionals the opportunity to coordinate efforts across political and geographic boundaries in an environment that utilizes their investment in Esri GIS technology. The real-time delivery of location, status, and messaging data via wireless networks to GIS-based computer-aided dispatch (CAD), emergency management, and other enterprise software systems are allowing commanders, elected officials, and managers to make better decisions.
Port Security through Spatial Information Management
Adam Cohen, EarthData Solutions, LLC

EarthData used Web-based decision support architecture built around Esri ArcGIS Server, Oracle DBMS, and a proprietary 3D rendering engine to combine sources of geospatial, tabular, and real-time data collected within the jurisdictional area of a U.S. east coast port. Purpose: This project evaluated the capabilities of virtual 3D architecture to identify, locate, track, and interrogate data over the Web. Method: The project used six application domains: marine, environmental, emergency response, property management, port operations, and port security. Analytical models included National Hurricane Center’s SLOSH and NOAA’s Hazardous Materials and Spills Division’s GNOME models. Results: Users selected and displayed intelligent 3D objects, received data streams to track and communicate changes in real time, generated thematic 2D and 3D maps, and created what-if scenarios." Conclusion: The system supports safety, management, and operations' functions such as spill response simulation, environmental planning, search and rescue, and shipping traffic management.

Contact Us | Privacy | Legal | Careers