This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Parameters to Facilitate the Creation of Initial Response Capsules for Survivors of Prodigious Disasters




McCabe, John

Type of Degree



Industrial Design


The psychological and physiological effect that a catastrophic event has on a person is staggering. Soon after a disaster, many survivors become unruly, hysterical, and in the worse cases even suicidal. After tragedy happens, most people don’t want handouts; they want to help themselves and their family recover. They want to find that sense of normalcy as quickly as possible. If you can give them the tools, the recovery process is accelerated. This study includes research on basic human needs and the impact of large-scale disasters with a brief look into psychological studies of color. The collection and organization of this data makes it possible to create a methodological system to design and construct a prototypical Initial Response Capsule which would provide basic human needs for two weeks, the typical length of time before organized emergency response can arrive. The capsule contains a basic signaling system, rations, water collection and purification system, first aid, and a shelter system.