Globally, ivory trade has been illegal for more than 30 years, and elephant hunting has been prohibited in India since the 1970s.
Curious, Puri did some research and discovered a shocking statistic: Africa’s forest elephant population had declined by about 62 percent between 2002 and 2011.
A wildlife lover, Puri wanted to do something to help protect the species and others still threatened by poaching.
Drones are currently used to detect and capture images of poachers, and they aren’t that accurate, the teenager explains.
“I realized that we could use this disparity between these two movement patterns in order to actually increase the detection accuracy of potential poachers,” she says.
ElSa uses a $250 FLIR ONE Pro thermal camera with 206x156 pixel resolution that plugs into an off-the-shelf iPhone 6.
Puri reached out to the computer scientist about her idea to catch elephant poachers using movement patterns, and Bondi-Kelly became her mentor for the project. »