Presented to the world for the first time at the Geneva Motor Show, Project Hero is a bespoke version of the Land Rover Discovery. This version of the Land Rover Discovery has been specially made for the Austrian Red Cross by the Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations (SVO).
An Advance Communication Vehicle, Project Hero has been created by Jaguar Land Rover in partnership with International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), which is world’s first humanitarian network. This Land Rover will be used by Red Cross’s Emergency Response Teams for search and rescue operations. Red Cross hopes that it will help them save lives by speeding up the response times, in case of disasters.
Since 1954, Land Rover has been supporting Red Cross and has supplied 120 vehicles to IFRC. All these vehicles have been deployed at many places throughout the world. Project Hero is the latest collaborative project between Red Cross and land Rover in their 63 years of relationship
The Project Hero is the first vehicle to feature roof-mounted drone. For the first time, it is having a fully integrated landing system featuring self-centring and magnetic retention technology, thus enabling the drone to land on the Project Hero even when the vehicle is in motion.
The new Discovery’s already proven capability is further enhanced by the Drone, which when airborne can transmit live footage to the Red Cross’s emergency response teams thus enabling them to respond more quickly and with greater efficiency to natural calamities like earthquakes, avalanches, floods, and landslides.
Rescuing survivors becomes difficult and dangerous with dramatic changes of landscapes which often make maps useless. Therefore, the Drone’s bird’s eye view will help rescuers inspect an emergency scene from a safer distance.
Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations, Mr. John Edwards says that “Land Rover and the team of engineers and designers at SVO are proud to support the incredible humanitarian work of the IFRC and its members. The new Discovery is an outstanding all-terrain SUV, and Project Hero is the optimum combination of enhanced capability and innovative technology. We hope to help the Red Cross save lives in emergency situations.”
Dr. Jemilah Mahmood (IFRC, Under Secretary General for Partnerships states “We are grateful to Land Rover for their generous support over the past 60 years, and are proud of our ambitious global partnership that has transformed the lives of millions of people on four continents. The partnership is supporting communities around the world to become more resilient in the face of natural disasters such as monsoons, flooding, and earthquakes. Project Hero combines the best expertise of the Red Cross and Jaguar Land Rover to create a truly unique vehicle, which we hope will be capable of making a difference to rescue operations in the toughest environments.”
Powering the Project Hero is a 3.0 litre TD6 engine. Apart from the unique drone technology, the rear of the interior of the Project Hero also has the following features.
Heavy Duty Sliding Floor in the rear load space, this can be utilized as an additional work surface or even to protect the load carried underneath.
There is a segregation panel behind the rear seats which provides additional equipment mounting points along with strategically-placed LED lighting which aids night vision. Also, there are power supply points which accept multiple plug setups of different regions.
In order to enable ease of contact from various locations, the Land Rover Discovery Project Hero comes equipped with Multiple Frequency Radio Equipment. The Drone can be controlled using a tablet app allowing the occupants to assess the surrounding situation from the safety of the vehicle.
The Project Hero will be kept at the Austrian Red Cross Training Centre in Erzberg, the mountainous mining areas of Eisenerz and in Vienna, for 12 months starting June 2017. Project Hero will be used for emergency support provided by Red Cross at times of natural disasters like heavy snowfalls, floods or accidents.
Images via Land Rover