Innovate UK Knowledge Transfer Program (KTP) is a government-funded framework for driving innovation and growth by linking university knowledge and resources with UK companies and industry partners.  CAL International believe that collaboration with universities, especially through KTPs, is the perfect vehicle to develop cutting edge technological solutions.

The aim of the 36-month Guardian KTP collaboration was to develop an advanced Tracking and Tactical Mapping System to use in high threat environments, such as Fire or Military Operations, where situational awareness is a matter of life and death. Leading the project on the academic side is Dr Princy Johnson from the Faculty of Engineering and Technology with Dr Huy Nguyen, a KTP Associate, who works full time on-site within CAL International’s engineering team.

Guardian Tactical Mapping System (TMS) initially focused on the Fire Service to increase the safety and effectiveness of Firemen and women in a burning building. Guardian allows the control centre to individually track everyone inside a building whilst simultaneously building a map of where they have been.

While the project initially focused on fire safety it has now been expanded to help command and control of troops in a high-risk urban environment, or armed police in a Hostage Rescue or terrorist incident.

24 months into the project the multi-sensor Guardian prototypes have been produced at under 1kg with a compact, tactical design.  Guardian is a very practical example of edge- computing with each operator tracking and mapping their own environment.  When multiple operators enter a building the  Commander sees a composite map from all the operators built into a single Common Operating Picture.

(the multi-sensor Guardian backpack and helmet)

The project is now ahead of schedule thanks to the team at CAL International, who have combined mechanics, software engineering, data management and Industrial Design to deliver a truly unique product. That product, Guardian TMS, is now ready to be introduced to the investor.

David Latham, CAL International’s Engineering Director, commented: “We are delighted to use the expertise of Dr Huy Nguyen and the resources of the Liverpool John Moore University for a project that our company may not otherwise have been able to afford. We would like to continue to develop links with universities in the future.”

Find more about Guardian here:

The Guardian system explainer: