In This Article

The COVID-19 pandemic has created a clear and present need for layered safety measures to prevent the spread of the virus. In response, we started with a significant R&D effort to explore technology-based solutions that help employees and students know that they are doing all they can to ensure personal health and safety.

As part of this effort, a mobile application was created to demonstrate how users can take an active role in enabling a safe workplace or campus. WWT Safe Arrive is a representative application that integrates two distinct actions:

  • Health Survey: Users take a simple, daily survey before heading to their campus or workplace.
  • Temperature Reading: Users enter a thermal camera kiosk at campus or workplace entrance and have their temperature read and captured in app through a QR code.

Application workflow

When launched, users respond to a simple daily health survey that captures overall health, contact with possible or confirmed COVID-19 cases and travel pattern information. Users then scan a QR code generated from their thermal camera temperature results.

Safe Arrive home and survey screens
Safe Arrive home and survey screens
Safe Arrive result screens with education verbiage
Safe Arrive result screens with education verbiage

Technology approach

The Safe Arrive mobile app is available on Android and iOS platforms. Thermal cameras are interfaced at the edge on industry-leading 5G platforms, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) is leveraged for data storage of aggregated survey results.

Safe Arrive uses RESTful APIs for saving and retrieving surveys, enabling integration with leading enterprise tools such as ServiceNow. The iOS application saves the user's temperature in Apple Health.

Contact tracing

The WWT R&D team is exploring different contact tracing solutions, while gaining an appreciation for how it's typically conducted today. Contact tracing is often performed by individuals with little to no robust IT systems to support their efforts.

Apple and Google have joined together to create an Exposure Notification System utilizing Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). The APIs that enable these abilities are limited to public health authorities. In the United States, each state or territory can opt-in by publishing their own app to utilize the Exposure Notification System. As of September 1, 2020, six states have created and launched apps.

Beyond Apple and Google, there are both GPS and BLE-based software and hardware solutions in development on the broader market which may eventually enable automated contact tracing for non-state entities. Software is being brought to market both from academia such as PathCheck, which originated from MIT, and industry. Several corporations have released software to facilitate contact tracing including PwC, Qualtrics, Salesforce and ServiceNow.

For commercial and industrial applications where coverage must be assured or where smartphones are not allowed, wearables including tags and wristbands can be deployed. The R&D team is evaluating hardware solutions for accuracy and efficacy.

Like any new technology, these software and hardware solutions require careful analysis and testing before large-scale deployment. To facilitate contact tracing, these solutions can be integrated with existing IT infrastructure such as facility access control systems, wireless access points and conference room video equipment.

The WWT team 

WWT brought together leaders from multiple parts of the organization for this R&D effort. Groups included: software engineering teams, data scientists, infrastructure specialists and subject matter experts in legal, public sector, service provider and IoT. This team enables WWT to help our customers understand how to leverage technology as they're navigating their pandemic response.

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