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NVIDIA GPUs are enabling green eco warriors to use AI for better forest protection

By Wong Chung Wee - on 10 Sep 2019, 11:20am

NVIDIA GPUs are enabling green eco warriors to use AI for better forest protection

Image source: NVIDIA

United States-based startup Outland Analytics has implemented an NVIDIA V100 Tensor Core GPU-based system to monitor forests. The NVIDIA GPU is hosted in the IBM Cloud, and it runs their AI applications that have been trained using the TensorFlow deep learning framework. The applications’ algorithms have crunched “around 100 hours of audio from field recordings and publicly available data.”

Image source: NVIDIA

In the field, Outland Analytics have developed and deployed an edge computing device, with cellular connectivity that houses an antenna and a solar panel. This device is strapped to a tree for audio monitoring, and the recorded sound signals are sent to the backend AI application on the IBM cloud for analysis.

Once the neural network detects unauthorized activities, based on their sound signature, the AI system will alert officials via email or a text an individual forestry ranger about the possibility of illegal activities in the monitored area.

According to the eco green warriors, who are also the founders of Outland Analytics, they were impressed by the speed and efficiency of the cloud-based NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU at training their AI system. The founders decide to make use of low-latency AI models that make use of audio signals for forest monitoring.

This cuts down on response time, and the forestry rangers have access to timely on-the-ground information for their enforcement efforts. Other systems that depend on satellite imagery are not well-suited for fast response, and identification of perpetrators is almost impossible from those footages

Their field-deployed monitoring system is low on maintenance and can be easily mounted on any height of the tree. The device can even last a few days without sun. It has already been tested in mountains ranges of the Hudson Valley, New York. The primary aim of the eco green warriors is to improve forest protection as they know that the odds are against the trees when it comes to their vital protection.

Source: NVIDIA

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