Smart Cities

It is forecasted that by 2020, 80% of the of the World’s population will live in cities, this will place an increasing strain on urban resources and services and as such there is expectations for the development of next generation infrastructures to make cities “smarter”. Data is key to achieving this and as cities become increasingly instrumented and interconnected, large number of diversity and rapidly expanding data channels will result. Data from embedded systems will rise from 2% of the digital universe in 2013 to 10% in 2021, this requires Cyber-Physical System (CPS) architectures that are capable of adapting and dealing with the scale. Smart Cities have a foundation in a number of core elements, namely people, business, transport, communication, water and energy that when interconnected form a complex “system of systems”. The inability to combine CPS to construct complex, cooperative, heterogeneous large-scale systems results in suboptimal interaction between people and systems, and the failure to leverage the entire value and potential of all available data.

We continue to see the adoption of IoT technology and services across a wide variety of industries in smart cities, with energy in smart buildings, mobility, and manufacturing leading the way [1]. On the mobility front predictions envisage that 152 million cars will be connected to the internet by 2020 making connected cars one of the largest application area within the mobility sector. In parallel with this the electric vehicle (EV) is seen as an emerging type of mobile intelligent power consumption device and energy storage terminal for Smart Grid with the global EV Charger market being forecast to grow from more than 1 million units in 2014 to in excess of  12.7 million units in 2020[4]. Electric vehicle charging services must be highly automated, intelligent and interactive, provide and need high-level and reliable information communication with IoT being leveraged for information perception, aggregation, secure interaction and visualization.

Improving health and safety of European citizens is also an EU priority where CPS can have a significant impact. This presents an opportunity to drive a more sustainable economic development and where the virtual world of services, Internet of Things and Social Networks can be merged with the physical infrastructures of smart homes, smart buildings, and intelligent transportation systems etc. to give rise to a unified communication and collaborative sensing infrastructure.

Nimbus Centre Focus

By utilising IoT technology smart city systems and processes (utilities, mobility, buildings, environment etc.) must become elements of a structured, interconnected, scalable and future proof ecosystem while preserving security and privacy. The AIOTI Smart City Large Scale Pilot Recommendations Report identifies that smart city initiatives and pilots up to now were typically focused on the deployment of smart infrastructure, sensors and applications but that these on their own were not sufficient and future IoT deployments must address: mechanisms to avoid vendor lock-in, innovative ways to exploit the large volumes of data extracted, tools to support citizen/stakeholder engagement in collaborating and contributing to the IoT ecosystem. Nimbus continues to develop innovative IoT solutions to address these complex challenges and support the realisation of Smart Cities.

Nimbus Centre Smart City Projects:

SURF, CONNECT, Pervasive Nation, DEWI, SCOTT