How 5G-powered robots are helping China fight coronavirus

5G patrol robots are being deployed to monitor mask-wearing and body temperatures in public places while an intelligent robot developed in a week will be used to disinfect hospitals.

A 5G smart patrol robot being used at Guiyang Airport in China
A 5G smart patrol robot being used at Guiyang Airport in China

China is using 5G patrol robots to monitor mask-wearing and body temperatures in public places to help fight the coronavirus.

The robots have been developed by Guangzhou Gosuncn Robot Company, using technology from Internet of Things hardware and software specialist Advantech. So far, they have been deployed in airports and shopping malls in cities such as Guangzhou, Shanghai, Xi’an and Guiyang.

Meanwhile, intelligent disinfection robots developed in a week from design to sample production by Siemens and Aucma will soon be used in some of China’s hospitals.

Patrol robots

Following the outbreak of Covid-19, the Guangzhou Gosuncn Robot Company, which provides smart city IoT products and services, upgraded its 5G-powered police patrol robot with new capabilities to assist first-line police officers in conducting disease prevention inspections.

Because the manual measurement of body temperature exposes public safety personnel to potential health risks, these robots are equipped with five high-resolution cameras and infrared thermometers capable of scanning the temperature of 10 people simultaneously within a radius of 5 metres.

If a high temperature or the absence of a mask is detected, the robots send an alert to the relevant authorities. All data can be transmitted to a centralised control centre for real-time situational response and decision-making. Moreover, although these robots are self-driving machines, they can also be controlled remotely, saving manpower by reducing patrolling responsibilities and preventing cross-infection.

Gosuncn’s 5G patrol robots integrate IoT, AI, cloud computing and big data technologies to conduct environmental sensing, dynamic decision-making and autonomous motion control, as well as behavioural sensing and interaction.

If a high temperature or the absence of a mask is detected, the robots send an alert to the relevant authorities.

To enable such advanced computing, 5G patrol robots are powered by a high-performance industrial edge computer (MIC-770), developed by Advantech.

To withstand 24/7 operation under extreme conditions, the MIC-770’s ruggedised chassis and cast aluminium heatsink protect against vibration and shock.

The Gosuncn Robot Company's management control system

The Gosuncn Robot Company’s management control system

Disinfection robots

Siemens and Aucma began developing the intelligent disinfection robots in February. The project was initiated by Yu Qi, head of Siemens China’s research group for advanced manufacturing automation in Qingdao, who said a piece of news “caught his eye” that said disinfection robots were urgently needed in many hospitals. He quickly gained support from management and colleagues to create a new type of intelligent disinfection robot.

Most disinfection robots available on the market combine a petrol-driven mistoriser gun with an electric chassis. On-site refuelling of robots is neither clean nor convenient, though, so the team decided to develop purely electric robots to better cater to the needs of affected areas.

An article on the Siemens website explains that among the challenges the development team faced was maximising the sterilisation impact with less disinfectant consumption and providing 360-degree coverage even in confined areas.

Powered by a lithium battery, a robot with double mistoriser guns can disinfect 20,000 to 36,000 sqm in one hour. An omnidirectional camera platform on the top transmits videos and information in real-time, coupled with an intelligent vision algorithm that allows the operator to remotely locate affected areas and prevent the spread of infectious diseases at low cost.

Powered by a lithium battery, a robot with double mistorizer guns can disinfect 20,000 to 36,000 sqm in one hour.

To make the robots operate easily on various road surfaces, the team adopted a caterpillar chassis instead of wheels to improve their ability to surmount obstacles and climb slopes.

With breakthroughs in both structural design and autonomous control systems, the team submitted two applications for national patents. The newly developed disinfection robots are ready to be launched and will soon be deployed in front-line hospitals.

In addition, more robots will be delivered to schools, offices, manufacturing sites and other public places to support the resumption of work and production.

Source: Sue Weekes-Smart Cities World

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Winners of £1.2 million self-driving vehicle cyber security feasibility studies funding announced

Zenic the organisation dedicated to accelerating the self-driving frevolution in the UK, has revealed the recipients of £1.2 million in funding from a competition focused on cyber security in self-driving vehicles. The Cyber Securities Feasibility studies competition is part-funded by the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) and delivered in partnership with Innovate UK. The competition winners will help define requirements for, and support the development of a connected and automated mobility (CAM) cyber security testing capabilities.

Zenzic’s UK Connected and Automated Mobility Roadmap to 2030, which is based on the input of over 150 organisations across government, academia and industry, highlights cyber resilience as the most significant technical challenge to be solved before the UK can benefit from self-driving vehicles on roads and the services they will underpin. Self-driving vehicles will need to communicate with other vehicles, infrastructure and third-party services, with data being shared across an ever-evolving and increasingly complex national infrastructure.

The competition winners will focus on three key areas:

  1. Finding ways to measure and maintain cyber-physical resilience and identify vulnerabilities, which will support the creation and testing of cyber-physical and software architectures, best practice in design and lifetime management
  2. Providing specifications to support the creation of new cyber test facilities for connected and self-driving vehicles
  3. Exploring commercial opportunities to develop new cyber-related services that can be deployed in the UK and across the global CAM marketplace

Seven projects have been awarded funding:

  • ResiCAVHORIBA MIRA, BT, CFMS Services, Oxfordshire County Council, Techworks, Thales, WMG
    • The use of current tools and techniques applied to static analysis of vehicles will be applied to real-time monitoring and response. It will develop requirements for a cyber security operations centre and extend the application of AI and data visualisation techniques.
  • CAVShieldHonda R&D Europe (UK) Ltd, IBM, Nexor, Toshiba, University of Bristol
    • Focuses on the data privacy aspects of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) to identify methodologies for real-time identification and measurement of vulnerabilities in CAV networks to enable widespread implementation to protect large vehicle fleets. This includes long-term commercial viability of cyber-related services for the CAM industry.
  • Project MeiliIDIADA UK, Crypta Labs, Teskalabs
    • Evaluation of new cybersecurity risks arising from the increasing connectivity in modern vehicles. Based on the network analysis performed and the threats uncovered, a modular hardware and software platform will be defined and demonstrated to test and evaluate the impact of C-ITS on traffic safety, driver confidence, and infrastructure development.
  • V2X Vulnerability MappingF-Secure
    • Development and application of testing methodologies for V2X infrastructure that are effective in providing comprehensive technical assessment of cyber risk exposure in a cost-effective and scalable manner, while allowing focused detection on the points that matter most.
  • PNT Cyber ResilienceSpirent, WMG
    • Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) products and services will be examined to demonstrate and determine the feasibility of a new observer-based technique to ‘attack’ and test CAV PNT-related functions in both controlled and real-world scenarios
  • DT-4-CTChilton Computing, Huduma, Oxfordshire County Council, Science and Technology Facilities Council 
    • Researching cybersecurity threats to connected vehicle networks and proposing a cybersecurity testing methodology using a digital twinning approach to identify and measure dynamic threats and suggest mitigation strategies.
  • BeARCATCisco, Millbrook Proving Ground, Telefonica UK, WMG
    • BeARCAT will explore the feasibility of a coherent, holistic approach to Cybersecurity testing for connected vehicle networks in the UK through CAV Testbeds.

The competition  is part of the government’s £100 million CAM Testbed UK Fund, supporting the Future of Mobility Grand Challenge. As a key part of the UK government’s modern Industrial Strategy, the Future of Mobility Grand Challenge was announced in 2017 to encourage and support extraordinary innovation in UK engineering and technology, making the UK a world leader within the transport industries. This includes facilitating profound changes in transport technologies and business models, to make the movement of people, goods and services across the nation greener, safer, easier and more reliable.

Richard Porter, Technology and Innovation Director at Zenzic said:

“The UK has one of the world’s leading cyber resilience industries. We have incredible academic institutions and testing facilities across the country, and have paved the way for cyber security technology development since the birth of the internet. With the advent of self-driving vehicles, the complexity of cyber defences will increase as thousands of vehicles, pieces of road-side infrastructure and connecting systems need to share data securely. This is an opportunity for the UK to build on the decades of experience we already have and once again set the standards for the rest of the world to follow.”

Future of Transport Minister, George Freeman, said:

“The connected and self-driving vehicle sector is set to be worth £62 billion by 2030, with safer roadsand smoother, more accessible journeys for all. Whether we’re turning cars into Wi-Fi connected hotspots or equipping them with millions of lines of code, we must consider the new challenges of putting this technology into practice. Today’s £1.2 million funding boost will help to guarantee the future safety and security of self-driving vehicles, both in the UK and globally.”

Business Minister, Nadhim Zahawi, said: 

“Many of the cars on sale today include assistance systems that drivers are familiar with, like cruise control and lane-keeping technology. Future vehicles will be even more advanced. This funding will help ensure this technology is safe and secure, and will grow our status as a global leader in defining the future of mobility and, in particular, connected and autonomous vehicles.”

Zenzic released its ‘UK Connected and Automated Mobility Roadmap to 2030’ report in September 2019 which can be downloaded here: https://zenzic.io/roadmap/

About Zenzic

Zenzic created by government and industry to champion the connected and self-driving ecosystem and accelerate the self-driving revolution in the UK. The company drives collaboration with partners across industry, government and academia to shape a world-class Testbed UK, and to deliver a comprehensive UK Connected and Automated Mobility Roadmap to 2030. Zenzic is channelling £200 million of investment, with the goal of ensuring a safer, more inclusive and productive mobile future.

About Innovate UK

Innovate UK drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas, including those from the UK’s world-class research base. They connect businesses to the partners, customers and investors that can help them turn these ideas into commercially successful products and services, and business growth. Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation.

About BEIS

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is working to build an economy that works for everyone, so that there are great places in every part of the UK for people to work and for businesses to invest, innovate and grow. The Department is responsible for business, industrial strategy, science, research and innovation, energy and clean growth, and climate change.

About the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) 

The Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles seeks to keep the UK at the forefront of the development and deployment of connected and self-driving vehicles through policy development, regulatory reform and joint investment with industry into R&D and testing facilities.

Coast and DG Cities form autonomous collaboration

Coast_DG_Cities_autonomous_pod_PR_rm

The US self-driving technology company and UK urban innovation specialist will provide design and implementation services to help transform cities with connected and autonomous vehicles.

DG Cities and Coast are joining forces to help cities implement CAV technology

California-based self-driving technology firm Coast Autonomous and DG Cities, a smart city specialist and subsidiary of the Royal Borough of Greenwich in London, have signed a memorandum of understanding to provide consultancy services for the design and implementation of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV).

It marks the second US-UK collaboration in the smart city space this week with Los Angeles and London committing to join forces to tackle critical global transportation issues as Innovator Cities.
Integrated framework

DG Cities and Coast will work together on services related to the transportation of people and/or goods using autonomous vehicles (AVs) with the aim of helping cities build a more sustainable and liveable future. Their approach is based on four pillars of an integrated framework:

spatial planning and the strategic design of the built environmentdigital infrastructure and new technologiesnew mobility servicesfuture vehicles.

Trevor Dorling, managing director of the urban innovation company, DG Cities, which has played a key part in implementing smart city initiatives in the London Borough of Greenwich, said it shares the same vision for cities as Coast: “Which the global discussion on air pollution and climate change is making more critical than ever.

“Electric shared AVs create the opportunity for cities to reinvent their environments and make them more liveable. Reducing the number of cars in urban centres will deliver many benefits and opportunities: improving air quality, allowing roads to be replaced with landscaping and car parks to be repurposed.

“Electric shared AVs create the opportunity for cities to reinvent their environments and make them more liveable”

“Coast’s unique technology, practical approach and ambition present a real opportunity to accelerate the take-up of autonomous vehicles and deliver benefits for cities and their citizens. Technology itself is not enough, and our expertise in smart city integration and design, alongside Coast’s capabilities in self-driving vehicles for urban environments, means we can offer a full service to clients looking to achieve meaningful impact.”

Coast’s mission is to connect people with mobility solutions that put pedestrians first and give cities back to people. Its AV software includes mapping and localisation, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI), fleet management and supervision systems.

“We have been aware of DG Cities’ work in this area for some time. Their focus on cities and people aligns closely with our belief that autonomous vehicles must deliver real benefits for cities and their citizens,” said Coast chief technology officer, Pierre Lefevre.

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Source: Smart Cities World

Georgia lab takes autonomous vehicle infrastructure testing to the streets

The newly opened Infrastructure-Automotive Technology Laboratory (iATL) in Alpharetta, Georgia, provides a hub for automakers, cellular network operators, traffic control device companies and semiconductor manufacturers to create, develop and test connected vehicle safety applications in real-world conditions.

The 4,400-square-foot facility includes dozens of different types of electronic devices that control everything from traffic signals and school zone safety beacons to electronic crosswalks. Automakers will be able to develop safety apps that interact with the devices and cellular network operators will work out communications, including 5G.

Real-world conditions

Through the iATL, automakers can test safety applications in the streets of Alpharetta, which operates the first large-scale deployment of connected vehicle infrastructure technology using all forms of communications simultaneously – 4G LTE, Cellular Vehicle to Everything (C-V2X), Dedicated Short Range Radio (DSRC) and 900 MHz radio, underwritten by the North Fulton Community Improvement District.

“The iATL is not just a collection of traffic devices in a laboratory, but it is embedded in an ecosystem of 125 connected intersections to test the day-one applications in real-world conditions”

“The iATL is where automakers, roadway operators and technology companies can come together and make the vision of connected vehicles a reality now,” said Bryan Mulligan, president of Applied Information Inc. “The iATL is not just a collection of traffic devices in a laboratory, but it is embedded in an ecosystem of 125 connected intersections to test the day-one applications in real-world conditions.”

 

 

The rubber hits the road

The opening day began with a workshop outlining policy and plans for connecting smart cars to a smart infrastructure and was attended by government leaders, roadway operators and representatives of the automotive, cellular network and technology industries.

“The iATL is a prime example of Georgia’s leadership in developing critical technology that is so important to our state and national economies while at the same time improving the safety of all of us who use our streets and highways today,” said Georgia Lt Gov. Geoff Duncan. “I am particularly pleased that this incredible facility is privately sponsored and enjoys the overwhelming support of the local government and surrounding business community – where the rubber meets the road.”

“The ability of vehicles to communicate with the traffic control infrastructure is crucial to improving roadway safety and for the rapid adoption of connected vehicle technology across the fleet,” added Jovan Zagajac, head of connected vehicle technology for Ford Motor Company.

Source: Sarah Wray. Smart Cities World

Autonomous Air Taxi trialed in North Carolina

EHang Conducts First-Ever U.S. Trial Flight of Pilotless Air Taxi at North Carolina Transportation Summit

EHang  the world’s leading autonomous aerial vehicle (AAV) technology platform company, today conducted its first-ever U.S. trial flight of its two-seater passenger-grade AAV, the EHang 216, as part of the North Carolina Transportation Summit hosted by the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) on January 8 and 9, 2020.

First-ever U.S. trial flight of EHang 216

This represents the first time that the EHang 216 has received flight approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). While this was a non-passenger flight, EHang is working with the FAA to secure approval for a passenger trial flight of the EHang 216 in the near future.

FAA为亿航智能颁发飞行许可.jpg

FAA issues flight approval for EHang

“Our mission is to make safe, autonomous, and eco-friendly air mobility accessible to everyone and this trial flight represents a significant step towards bringing our urban air mobility solutions to the U.S. market,” said EHang founder, chairman, and CEO Huazhi Hu. “Pilotless air taxis have the power to transform everyday life in urban areas since they can lessen pollution, expedite emergency services, and save individuals and businesses time and money through shorter travel times.”

Roy Cooper, the North Carolina Governor, said, “We are proud to have the first autonomous aerial vehicle flying in North America, in North Carolina. Obviously, they are beginning this all of the world and this technology and what it means for transportation, both cargo and passengers, is pretty astronomical. This gonna be very positive for the economy. We want North Carolina to be on the cutting edge of this technology and we’re proud to have EHang here to show and demonstrate to us what can be done with this technology. It’s taking off. We North Carolina has become the pilot that can help move this kind of business forward. We are excited about that.”

Pearlis Johnson, Deputy Regional Administrator, Southern Region, FAA

Derrick Xiong,Co-founder & CMO of EHang

James H. Trogdon III,Transportation Secretary

David Howard,Chief Deputy Secretary

Mr. Roy Cooper, Governor of North Carolina

To date, EHang has safely conducted over two thousand trial flights in the United States, China, Austria, the Netherlands, Qatar, and the UAE to ensure that its AAVs operate safely and reliably in different areas globally.

EHang is the first UAM company to realize commercialization for its passenger-grade AAVs, having already delivered 38 units to customers as of December 5, 2019.

 

Prior to this debut flight in the U.S., two EHang 216 AAVs completed simultaneous trial flights of their commercial sightseeing applications in Guangzhou, China on November 30, 2019. These trial flights are part of EHang’s joint initiative with the government of Guangzhou to develop Guangzhou to be EHang’s first urban air mobility pilot city. These trial flights will enable EHang to test flight routes and vertiports to implement the initiative.

 

In January 2019, EHang was selected by the Civil Aviation Administration of China as the country’s first and only pilot company for passenger-grade AAV operation programs. In May 2019, EHang launched trial operations of urban air cargo transportation in collaboration with the express delivery company DHL-Sinotrans along a customized flight route of approximately 5 miles (8km) in Donguan, China.

 

EHang has three main business pillars: urban air mobility (including passenger transportation and logistics), smart city management, and aerial media. These pillars are underpinned by a comprehensive suite of operational service support for AAV customers including training, maintenance, command-and-control system set-up, and flight monitoring.

Source: E-Hang.

Toyota to build Woven City prototype Smart City of the future

20200107_01_01-1000x525Toyota has revealed plans to build Woven-City a prototype “city” of the future on a 175-acre site at the base of Mount Fuji in Japan. Announced at CES 2020, the global consumer technology show in Las Vegas, the Woven City will be a fully connected ecosystem, powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

 Envisioned as a “living laboratory,” the city will be home to full-time residents and researchers who will be able to test and develop technologies such as autonomy, robotics, personal mobility, smart homes and artificial intelligence in a real-world environment.

 Akio Toyoda, Toyota Motor Corporation President, said: “Building a complete city from the ground up, even on a small scale like this, is a unique opportunity to develop future technologies, including a digital operating system for the infrastructure. With people, buildings and vehicles all connected and communicating with each other through data and sensors, we will be able to test connected AI technology, in both the virtual and physical realms, maximising its potential.”

 Toyota will extend an open invitation to collaborate to other commercial and academic partners and invite interested scientists and researchers from around the world to come and work on their projects in this one-of-a-kind, real-world incubator.

 “We welcome all those inspired to improve the way we live in the future to take advantage of his unique research ecosystem and join us in our quest to create an ever-better way of life and mobility for all,” said Akio Toyoda.

Toyota has commissioned Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, Founder and Creative Director of Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), to design Woven City. His team has designed many high-profile projects, from 2 World Trade Center in New York and Lego House in Denmark, to Google’s Mountain View and London headquarters.

 Design of the city

Under the city’s masterplan, street use has three designations: for faster vehicles only; for a mix of lower-speed vehicles, personal mobility and pedestrians; and for pedestrians only (a park-like promenade). These three street types will weave together in an organic grid pattern to help accelerate the testing of autonomous transport.

 The city is planned to be fully sustainable, with buildings made mostly of wood using traditional Japanese joinery and robotised production methods, to minimise the carbon footprint. The roofs will be covered in photo-voltaic panels to generate solar power, adding to the energy produced by hydrogen fuel cells. Toyota also plans to weave in the natural world throughout the city, with native vegetation and hydroponics.

 Residential buildings will be equipped with the latest human support technologies, such as in-home robotics to assist with daily living. Homes will use sensor-based AI to check the occupants’ health, take care of basic needs and enhance daily life. The project will be an opportunity to deploy connected technology with integrity and trust, securely and positively.

 Only fully autonomous, zero-emission vehicles will be allowed on the main thoroughfares to move residents around. Throughout the city, autonomous Toyota e-Palette vehicles will be used for transport and deliveries, and as changeable mobile retail units.

 Neighbourhood parks, a large central recreation area and a central plaza for social gatherings will be designed to bring the community together. Toyota believes that encouraging human connection will be an equally important aspect of the Woven City experience.

 Toyota plans to populate Woven City with employees and their families, retired couples, retailers, visiting scientists and industry partners. The plan is to start with 2,000 people and increase the number as the city evolves.

Ground-breaking for the site is scheduled for early 2021. Those interested in partnering with the project can find more details at Woven-city.global.

 Source: Toyota

 

Tim Cosgrove wins the Co-Star table football final

The 2019 Co-Star table football contest sponsored by Terry’s Chocolate Orange was won by Tim Cosgrove in an intense and pulsating grand final.

 Matt Hancock and Tim Cosgrove contested the final for the forth year in a row qualifying as group winners.

 Tim was representing Leeds United and Matt was playing on behalf off their very bitter rivals Manchester United.

 The final was keenly contested with both players on top of their games, Matt was dominant in midfield but Tim had the edge in defence and attack.

 Tim commented ” Contests between myself and Matt are always incredibily close and very keenly contested and I’m delighted to retain the trophy and getting one over on Man united makes it even sweeter! Hopefully this is a good omen for Leeds United too as they chase promotion back to the premier league”.

A hugely dissapointed Matt refused to comment.

 The final league was:

 1.Tim Cosgrove

2.Matt Hancock

3.Owen Berger

4.Laura Cosgrove

5.Vicky Grazulyte

6.Trudy Newby

Source: Co-Star

World’s first hydrogen bus fleet rolls out in France

 
The hydrogen bus will operate in the French city of Pau. Picture copyright: Cyril Garrabos

The hydrogen bus will operate in the French city of Pau. Picture copyright: Cyril Garrabos

The world’s first hydrogen-powered bus rapid transit (BRT) system has been deployed in the city of Pau in the south of France.

Dubbed Fébus, the new service will see eight 18-metre long Van Hool buses operate on a 6km dedicated line in the centre of Pau.

Project launch

French public transport operator, Keolis, has worked in partnership with local transport operator Société de Transport de l’Agglomération Paloise on the project launch and is providing technical assistance for the operation of the eight hydrogen BRTs.

This new service is part of a major upgrade to the city public transport system.

With 85 per cent of the 6km route running in dedicated lanes protected from other traffic, and a priority system operating at intersections, journey time is limited to 17 minutes.

Built by the Belgian manufacturer Van Hool, the buses produce their electricity on board, using a hydrogen fuel cell.

“The use of this technology results in zero emission of greenhouse gases or air polluting substances.“

The bus’ power source is an electric hybrid. Hydrogen (H2) and oxygen (O2) are converted to electricity in the fuel cell using electrolysis in “real-time”. Further, the lithium batteries and electric motors provide additional power wherever and whenever it is needed.

The energy that is released when the vehicle’s brakes are applied is also re-used. The use of this technology means there are no emissions of greenhouse gases or air polluting substances, claims Van Hool – the vehicle’s only emission is water vapour.

The buses are designed to be accessible for people with reduced mobility, can accommodate 145 riders and feature large bay windows that provide passengers with plenty of light.

The line’s 14 stations are equipped with real-time passenger information, free wi-fi, automatic ticket vending machines and video protection cameras.

The buses operate on the route between François Mitterand Hospital, in the north of the intercommunal area, and Pau train station, in the south. They serve the city’s main points of activity: educational (the university); and administrative as well as commercial and leisure hubs (supermarket, cinema, restaurants, city centre and its shops).

In France, in addition to the hydrogen BRT service in Pau, Keolis launched the fully electric BRT lines in Amiens (May 2019) and Bayonne-Biarritz-Anglet (September 2019) as well as the Caen steel-wheeled tram (July 2019).

In the Netherlands, in September 2019, Keolis won the largest electric bus contract in its history, with 300 vehicles operating in the provinces of Overijssel, Flevoland and Gelderland from December 2020 onwards.

Source: Smart Cities News

CLASS software framework makes Modena smarter in real-life setting

Cutting-edge software technology developed by the European project CLASS is now being tested on connected cars in the Modena Automotive Smart Area (MASA), a real urban laboratory in northern Italy. The CLASS framework is powering compelling smart city applications, from digital traffic signs and smart parking to air pollution simulation and pedestrian avoidance applications.

Allowing the execution of big-data analytics under real-time constraints, the CLASS software architecture provides a solution to the problems of managing extremely large amounts of complex data (pedestrians, traffic, vehicles, etc.) in real time. Data-in-motion and data-at-rest analytics are integrated into a single development framework, which works with real-time guarantees.

“It’s thrilling to see our technology powering the smart city use cases which will make our urban areas safer and less congested,” said Eduardo Quiñones, senior researcher at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) and coordinator of the CLASS project. “Thanks to its capacity to process big data analytics under real-time constraints, the CLASS framework is a significant step towards making safe connected vehicles a reality.”

“With the MASA, the city of Modena is combining the proud Italian tradition of high-end cars with the needs of modern smart cities,” said Luca Chiantore, manager of the department of Smart city, demographic services and participation of the Modena City Council. “We are delighted to be testing out the most innovative smart-city technologies, paving the way towards a truly responsive urban area which will improve quality of life for all citizens.”

The first outcomes of this smart city use case resulted in different applications, which will improve the traffic and pollution conditions of modern urban environments.

All the software architecture components have been defined and are available to download on the dedicated CLASS GitHub channel: https://github.com/class-euproject

Demonstration of moving vehicles and pedestrians in real-time in the MASA area

A real smart city use case in Modena

The CLASS software is being evaluated in the Modena Automotive Smart Area (MASA), a real urban laboratory in the city of Modena. Data is already being generated and collected from IoT devices and sensors located in the MASA and on the high-tech equipped Maserati cars.

Initial tests started generating a knowledge base with combined information of the city and the cars, upon which the following advanced smart city applications are being implemented:

  • The Digital traffic sign application allows for evaluating and improving real-time traffic conditions by advising on best routes available, for instance in the case of accidents or emergency vehicles.
  • The Air pollution simulation estimates the pollution emissions of the moving vehicles in real-time.
  • The Smart parking gathers and provides real-time data on the available parking lots within the area.
  • The Obstacle detection warns the drivers about pedestrians and objects that appear on their way, even if it is not visible to the car.

CLASS vehicle detecting parking space

About CLASS

CLASS (Edge and Cloud Computation: A Highly Distributed Software for Big Data Analytics) is a European funded project with a budget of €3.9 million which started on 1 January 2018 and ends on 31 December 2020. Coordinated by Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC, Spain), the project brings together a multidisciplinary consortium composed by all stakeholders needed for the development of business innovations using real big-data including vendors from the ICT industry such as Atos Spain S.A. (Spain) and IBM Israel, users across different smart city domain sectors including private and public organizations such as the Comune di Modena (Italy) and Maserati SPA (Italy) and researchers such as the Universita degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia (UNIMORE, Italy). Further information can be found on the project website: www.class-project.eu.