The global population is growing steadily, and the living space is becoming ever scarcer. Buildings are getting higher and more complex, that includes that the number of people living in a single place increases steadily. Therefore, it becomes more important to guarantee an efficient, safe and reliable building evacuation system. The state of the art in the field of building technology makes it possible to use environmental information inside the building to calculate dynamical evacuation routes. Today, the evacuation routes are static and offer just the shortest way out of the building. In the worst case, the persons to be evacuated are led directly to the source of the fire or through a blocked corridor. This means that temporary conditions such as the capacity reduction of the floor by cartons of paper, robots or meal trolleys are not considered in the escape routes. Another disadvantage of the widespread fire control is that every person entering a building needs to check the escape route plan actively the escape route plan and memorize the shortest route out of the building. A further issue arises when an emergency situation occurs. Occupants might be in panic, and they might not remember the right evacuation path and they are turning in the wrong direction.
The goal is to increase safety in buildings in an emergency situation by improving escape guidance. For this purpose, various algorithms will be investigated that determine the shortest and safest route out of the building. This route may be indicated by color LED stripes in the ground or by LED signs on the ceiling. Furthermore, the shortest route to the source of the fire will be calculated and made available to the rescue forces, e.g. by making use of handheld devices. The main aspect of our research is the development of a system that combines fault tolerance and reasonable pricing to allow for usage in buildings of varying sizes. Structural building information (such like stairs, emergency lights, corridor length, and width, etc.) and sensor information (fire, temperature, carbon monoxide, obstacle detection, etc.) will be used as a decision-making basis for the calculation of escape routes. This should avoid escape routes that no longer offer a high degree of safety and indicate safe escape routes.
First, the quality criteria and the static and dynamic parameters were analyzed, so in the current state of research, only a few structural conditions are considered for the calculation of dynamic escape routes. In most cases, the length, width or capacity of a corridor is considered in the calculation. Thus, a simulator was developed that guarantees at least the same degree of safety as the static escape route system. For the calculation of the escape route, more than 50 structural criteria are taken into account, which improves the quality of the escape route. In addition, the system reacts fully automatically to the spread of the fire, so no escape route leads through the fire.