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Pützchens Markt in Bonn: Researchers are testing a camera balloon

Pützchens Markt in Bonn : Researchers are testing a camera balloon

Researchers are testing the use of camera technologies for major events at the Pützchens Markt. The test run could result in permanent use. The device has already been able to help in one incident.

Pützchens Markt 2022: a dense crowd in front of a beer garden, panic breaks out. With the help of ‘Monica’, the emergency command in the special police station knows which emergency services are where on the fairground and where people can be brought to safety most quickly.

This scenario could really happen, should the police and the city of Bonn be able to rely on ‘Monica’ in the future. The European research programme is still in its test phase. The test run is schedule to finish in 2019. The European Union (EU) will then have to decide on possible marketing and a sales price.

And what is behind ‘Monica’? As part of the research programme, scientists are developing technical solutions for greater security at major events. The researchers from the project consortium, led by the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology (FIT) in Sankt Augustin, want to use the large funfair to further improve crowd density measurements using cameras, for example.

Algorithms are applied to measurements from Marktstraße and Friedenstraße, which count the people shown on the camera photos. And how is ‘Monica’ faring? Malik Dine from the city of Bonn: “In one incident on Saturday, we were able to help the security staff with our technology.”

Funding of 15 million Euro

A total of 29 European partners, including the six cities of Bonn, Copenhagen, Hamburg, Leeds, Turin and Lyon, are involved in the research project led by the FIT in Sankt Augustin. Launched in 2017, the project tests and develops noise reduction technology and security and service systems specially adapted to the requirements of selected major events in the participating cities. “Monika’ receives funding of around 15 million Euros from the EU. The city of Bonn receives up to 450,000 Euros in funding.

Stephanie Clemens-Krämer from the Public Order Office in Bonn explained on Monday that the safety standards at the funfair were already very high. However, they wanted to test whether the practical use of ‘Monica’ could further improve these standards. “We will also use the computer programme, refined in 2019, at the next Pützchens Markt. Then the test run ends,” said Malik Dine.

For further information on ‘Monica’ go to monica-project.eu

Original text: Holger Willcke. Translation: kc