I have a confession! I was also part of the generation of
people who sleep well at night just with the number of social shares made on social issues, everyday. Like many others, I was more concerned about the likes on my posts than the real change driven by those posts. However, for rhyme or reason, some events affect people in a way that nothing else does. And there was one such incident that had such an effect on me.
It was the incident of a woman in Delhi getting rapped travelling in a cab in 2015. I thought something had changed after the Nirbhaya incident in 2012. But after the cab incident, It seemed like nothing apparently had changed in reality for women. It made me uncomfortable but I felt powerless to be able to do anything about it.
I know sharing and posting hate post in social media wont help, and I really felt the need to do something about this issue. Women are beings who are equal and need to have the same status as men with respect to their space and safety. I may not be able to change laws. Instead, I wanted to do something innovative within my power to improve the situation.
Anyone whose been a student in a small town engineering college in South India would know that innovation is not exactly a word that is a big No! No!. I realised it when I decided to build a safety device for women as my final year project.
After evading several attempts by my Project Guide and Head of the Department to persuade me to take up a project from the project centre assigned by the college, I began working on my pet project as my project.
So now let me explain what my project was.
Wonderbelt is a wearable belt which has an inbuilt GPS, GSM and other sensors. In case of an emergency, the user can press the switch on the belt for a particular interval to trigger the emergency mode. This sends the GPS location to her guardian and the nearby police station. It also sends out a loud alarm to alert the people around. In case, someone tries to tamper or remove the belt, it will provide the molester a high voltage shock which
helps the person to escape from the situation.
The belt will also have a small latch which operates based on the command from the police-station to release a defence tool such as a knife or a pepper spray that could be used for self-defence.
What is the technology behind Wonderbelt?
· This whole project is powered by Arduino Mega, which takes control of the processing.
· This circuit is serially connected to the GPS module which provides the GPS data for the geo-tracking.
· The location can also be accessed by sending a SMS. This is sent using GSM module connected serially to send and receive SMS and calls.
· In order to provide more details, other sensors will be used to get parameters from the environment and their health.
· In order to protect the device from forceful removal, the belt is designed with a high voltage switching cicuit which provides a sudden shock.
· Servo motor will be used to open and close the latch of the defense module.
· The whole system will be powered by a lithium battery and charge controller.
I am currently working on a compact version of this device for enhanced user experience. Looking forward to get a product with a better user experience out soon!