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Journal of Sensors
Volume 2016, Article ID 8325845, 8 pages
Research Article

Forest Monitoring and Wildland Early Fire Detection by a Hierarchical Wireless Sensor Network

1Technological Institute of Informatics, Polytechnic University of Valencia, Alcoy Campus, Plaza Ferrándiz y Carbonell 2, 03801 Alcoy, Spain
2Polytechnic University of Madrid, Campus Ciudad Universitaria, Avenida Complutense 30, 28040 Madrid, Spain
3ISDEFE S.A., Beatriz de Bobadilla 3, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Received 21 October 2015; Revised 11 January 2016; Accepted 18 January 2016

Academic Editor: Kewei Zhang

Copyright © 2016 Antonio Molina-Pico et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A wildland fire is an uncontrolled fire that occurs mainly in forest areas, although it can also invade urban or agricultural areas. Among the main causes of wildfires, human factors, either intentional or accidental, are the most usual ones. The number and impact of forest fires are expected to grow as a consequence of the global warming. In order to fight against these disasters, it is necessary to adopt a comprehensive, multifaceted approach that enables a continuous situational awareness and instant responsiveness. This paper describes a hierarchical wireless sensor network aimed at early fire detection in risky areas, integrated with the fire fighting command centres, geographical information systems, and fire simulators. This configuration has been successfully tested in two fire simulations involving all the key players in fire fighting operations: fire brigades, communication systems, and aerial, coordination, and land means.