Semi-Autonomous Robotic System for Forest Cleaning and Fire Prevention

The world has been affected by an alarming number of wildfires every year, ravaging millions of hectares of forestry areas and resulting in an unacceptable amount of human losses. The SafeForest project deals with developing an advanced robotic system for the prevention of wildland and wildland-urban interface (WWUI) fires. Vegetation cleaning in corridors along high voltage electric lines will be central to avoiding forest fires that recently led to massive destruction in countries like the USA and Portugal.

Keywords: Forestryrobotics · Sustainableforestmanagement · Wildfireprevention

Leading company in Portugal

Project Start Date

Project End Date

SafeForest, a way to control and reduce large forest fires

The project intends to drastically reduce the costs associated with the maintenance of private or public forests, namely near houses, as well as the protection of wide corridors used as fuel breaks and corridors near critical infrastructures (roads, railways, telecommunication lines, and antennas, electric utility lines) to control and reduce the propagation of large forest fires. 

SafeForest will develop an advanced monitoring and robotic system to improve the maintenance of forests and contribute to reducing the wildfire hazard potential while conserving natural resources and creating ecosystems that are resilient to climate change.


What to expect

The main goal of the project is to develop semi-autonomous mobile platforms that can execute a land clearing mission, based on a preliminary mapping of the area carried out with the support of advanced drone terrain/vegetation monitoring, and manage to remove the redundant vegetation to achieve the necessary fuel breaks cleaning. This objective will be achieved by integrating different sensors on a semi-autonomous all-terrain platform for land clearing in fuel breaks and in WWUI areas, able to perform in most types of terrains.


Meet the partners

INGENIARIUS – Micael Santos Couceiro

Industrial Co-Promoter:
SILVAPOR – José Gameiro

Academic Co-promoters:
ISR Coimbra – Anibal Traça de Almeida
Associação para o Desenvolvimento da Aerodinâmica Industrial (ADAI) – Domingos Xavier Viegas

Robotics Institute – George Kantor 


Main Goals

  • To develop an advanced mapping and characterization system, called the Forest Management Information System (FMIS), for the terrain and its detailed vegetation cover.

  • To develop semi-autonomous robot systems to clean vegetation in different types of terrain, namely rough and sloppy areas, in order to clean fuel breaks to create opportunities of controlling fire propagation and to prevent the possibility of larger forest fire events.

Follow the project