Smart cities is identified as a main growth trend with Pike Research predicting global Investment in smart city technology infrastructure to total $108 billion by 2020.
The aims of establishing smart cities include improving quality of life for residents, increasing operational efficiencies and reducing costs, attracting more business and minimizing environmental impacts. This is achieved by better use of existing resources through improved monitoring, controls and coordination of services and infrastructure.
M2M Connectivity offers a range of sensors and M2M wireless devices that enhance a city’s intelligence and connectedness using 3G, ZigBee, Bluetooth, GSM/GPRS and Satellite to provide connectivity.
Wireless sensor networks are a key component in the creation of smart cities. For efficient city management, a distributed network of intelligent sensor nodes can measure various parameters from noise, temperature, ambient light levels and carbon monoxide concentration, to the availability and location of parking spaces.
Smart Cities applications include:
- Reducing environmental noise – monitoring the physiological and psychological effects on people’s interrupted sleep, rest, study and communication.
- Monitoring atmospheric pollution – measuring gases such as CO2 and NO2 or dust in the atmosphere that threatens the health of urban dwellers by causing respiratory diseases.
- Maintaining good structural health and street lighting – ensuring buildings, bridges, roads and other major structures are sound and the provision of intelligent and adaptive street lighting.
- Managing traffic and parking – minimizing emissions and traffic congestion – the aim of improved traffic flow achieved by establishing Intelligent roads with warning messages and diversions according to climate conditions and unexpected events like accidents or traffic jams.
- Security and survelliance – communications to/from a central control station allowing remote surveillance, access to control systems, motion detectors, lighting and access points. The control station can remotely authorize access to controlled areas with the ability to open and close locks, doors, gates via the wireless network within seconds.
- Retail and Point of Sale – the ability to target shoppers by picking up electronic devices signals to deliver advertising from retailers in the current vicinity of the shopper. Improved secure and fast payment methods.