Save Forests from Extinction! Monitor and Quickly Detect Forest Fires

Forest fires are becoming a serious concern in Japan and China

Surrounded by oceans, Japan is a nation of mountains with lush forests, accounting for approximately 67% of the country's land (percentage of forest coverage). This is nearly the same percentage of coverage as Finland and Sweden, countries also well known for their beautiful forests and lakes.

While Japan has one of the highest percentages of forest coverage in the world, recently forest fires are causing serious concern. According to data for the past five years, an average of 1,800 forest fires occur annually in Japan, resulting in the destruction of some 1,000 ha of forests, equivalent to around 200 football stadiums, each year. In 2013, no less than 2,020 forest fires occurred and approximately 70% of them were caused by the actions of people, such as campfires and cigarettes.

Damage from forest fires is raising serious issues not only in Japan but also in China. As many as 9,000 forest fires occur annually in China, causing 46,000 ha of forests, or about 10,000 football stadiums, to be destroyed.

Quickly detecting forest fires and monitoring unusual conditions

Fujitsu has developed a technology that processes images captured by a camera, to detect forest fires with high speed and accuracy. This technology is expected to enhance the detection of forest fires and monitor any unusual conditions.

More specifically, the camera captures real-time images of objects within a 5-km radius and sends them to a remote monitoring center via Wi-Fi. A dedicated system then analyzes the images and edits out things such as fog and smog that impedes the analysis of smoke and fire. Monitoring clear images of smoke and fire, the system analyzes their movements, colors and shapes in greater detail to identify if there is a forest fire.

Fujitsu completed testing in China's Hubei Province and has since started full system operation, with the sale of this technology also promoted in other areas. Fujitsu continues to focus on developing solutions designed to support and overcome social challenges.