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Trimble Sponsors National Geographic Young Explorer Grantee in African Rain Forest
Trimble Nomad Handheld Documents "The Search for Gabon's Sacred Rain Forest Caves"
The area the expedition is exploring is one of the most wild and biologically diverse intact regions in the world, and also supports one of the last populations of indigenous Pygmies in Africa. One of the goals of the expedition is to help the Gabonese authorities who plan to request World Heritage Site status from UNESCO to preserve and protect the sacred caves in the Lastoursville and Ndende regions of Gabon.
"When we designed the Nomad, we intended it to be used in some of the world's most harsh work environments," said Rob Davis, director of sales and marketing for Tripod Data Systems, a Trimble company. "This is certainly a great example of what we had in mind. We're proud that the Nomad is rugged enough for this work, and we're honored to be able to help an expedition of this scientific and cultural importance."
"The Trimble Nomad was the best choice for this expedition. We need rugged computing and positioning tools we can count on in an environment that includes dense tropical rain forest, flooding rivers, thousands of forest elephants, bad roads and Ebola outbreaks," said Frost. "I'm confident that the Nomad will withstand everything we encounter. And after the expedition is over, those hurdles will make better stories and the whole trip more rewarding."
The Nomad is designed for all-day operation in extreme outdoor and industrial environments. It meets MIL-STD-810F military standards for drops, vibration and temperature extremes. Impervious to water and dust, it also carries an IP67 rating. The Nomad includes an 806 MHz processor, a long-life battery, integrated wireless capabilities including GPS, 802.11g and Bluetooth, and the option to add an integrated laser bar code scanner and a color digital camera. The Nomad also features a high-resolution, sunlight-visible VGA display that shows graphics and maps in crisp detail.
The expedition's goal is to complete the first major multidisciplinary scientific exploration of Central African rain forest caves. It involves visiting three of Gabon's cave areas, where the team will survey, photograph, film and complete scientific studies in each cave they encounter. The scientific studies include paleoclimatic reconstructions, archaeological investigations and biodiversity surveys, led by Dr. Lee White of the Wildlife Conservation Society and Dr. Richard Oslisly of the Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement. Photos, video and writing from the expedition will be used to produce stories of the adventure for the decision-makers at UNESCO as well as the general public in Gabon and abroad.
Trimble applies technology to make field and mobile workers in businesses and government significantly more productive. Solutions are focused on applications requiring positioning or location—including surveying, construction, agriculture, fleet and asset management, public safety and mapping. In addition to utilizing positioning technologies such as GPS, lasers and optics, Trimble solutions may include software content specific to the needs of the user. Wireless technologies are utilized to deliver the solution to the user and to ensure a tight coupling of the field and the back office. Founded in 1978 and headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., Trimble has a worldwide presence with more than 3,600 employees in more than 18 countries.