A local research team has successfully developed an ultralight global positioning device to track the migration routes of small birds suspected of spreading avian influenza (AI).
The National Science Museum announced on Feb. 3 that it has succeeded in developing a wild animal tracking device (WT-200) that only weights 22g, in partnership with the Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency. SK Telecom also provided technical cooperation for data roaming services.
In the past, it was impossible to attach locally-made tracking devices to small migratory birds like spectacled teals, which presumably spread AI, because the devices weighed 50kg. Since the newly-developed device uses rechargeable solar cells, it is possible to track the migration routes of wild animals for several years. It is also possible to find their location with a Global Positioning System in real time, plus or minus 10 m in the margin of error.
The research team said that the new device could replace imported satellite-positioning devices used in studying wild animals, since it will be possible to get information on the location using mobile networks around the world, which SKT is partnered with.