Bringing movable and deployable networks to disaster areas: Development and field test of MDRU

Toshikazu Sakano, Satoshi Kotabe, Tetsuro Komukai, Tomoaki Kumagai, Yoshitaka Shimizu, Atsushi Takahara, Thuan Ngo, Zubair Md Fadlullah, Hiroki Nishiyama, Nei Kato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


Communication demand is paramount for disaster-affected people to confirm safety, seek help, and gather evacuation information. However, the communication infrastructure is likely to be crippled due to a natural disaster, which makes disaster response excruciatingly difficult. Although traditional approaches can partially fulfill the most important requirements from the user perspective, including prompt deployment, high capacity, large coverage, useful disaster-time application, and carrier-free usability, a complete solution that provides all those features is still required. Our collaborative research and development group has developed the Movable and Deployable Resource Unit, which is referred to as the MDRU and has been proven to have all those required features. Via extensive field tests using a compact version of an MDRU (i.e., the van-type MDRU), we verify the effectiveness of the MDRU-based disaster recovery network. Moreover, we demonstrate the further improvement of the MDRU's performance when it is complemented by other technologies such as relay-by-smartphone or satellites.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7389836
Pages (from-to)86-91
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Network
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 1


  • Ad hoc networks
  • Delays
  • Earthquakes
  • Safety
  • Satellites
  • Servers
  • Wireless networks


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