Internet of Things (IoT) enabled Smart City
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision ‘Digital India’, has a plan to build 100 smart cities across the country. To help the Indian Government convert the country into a Digital India, Intel can partner with Government to make India a leader in digitally delivering services in the health, education, banking sectors.
As the Indian Internet populace endures to grow from 60 million in 2009 to 190 million in 2014, it is estimated that the possible growth will be over 550 million users by 2018. The number of Internet users in countryside areas will touch 210 million by 2018, aiding India’s internet consumer base to cross 500 million by 2018.
The Internet class of 2018 will be more rural, older, more gender-equal, more mobile, and more dialect than their equivalents of today. Rural users which will be the Internet populace of the future, is expected to rise from 29 percent in 2013 to between 40 and 50 percent in 2018. Thus, the rural area seems to be grasping up with digital quiet quickly. By 2018, the rural populace will stand on an equal footing with the metropolitan populace in terms of internet tradition and availability.
Hence, the smart city project needs to be planned cleverly, bearing in mind the local populace as the key point. Also, it has to be wary as to not widen the now present abyss between the rural and the urban class. A nation should grow taking all its populaces along, regardless of class differences, and providing to everyone’s need alike.
As much as the idea of smart cities is unbelievable and normal, its execution on India at the given socio-economic condition might be a bit bit difficult. However, as a fast developing economy, India needs to keep up with the worldwide standards. Hence, the accomplishment of this plan could make India take a major leap in the battle of growth. With government looking for private partnership, Intel can partner with Government to foster technology as the enabler for creating a digitized India.
Global Trend towards Urbanization
The 21st century is becoming known as the century of cities as countries move from being primarily agrarian economies to industrial and service sectors leading to urbanization. According to the United Nations, already in July 2007, the urban population surpassed the rural population in the world. Moreover, this proportion is expected to increase dramatically in the coming years to the point that by 2050, almost 70% of the world population will be urban and many cities will have over 10 million inhabitants. It is estimated that by 2025 in China alone, there will be 221 cities in excess of 10 million inhabitants. Europe currently has 35 such cities. Currently, cities consume 75% of the world’s resources and energy and generate 80% of greenhouse gases, occupying only 2% of the world’s territory.
The global experience is that a country’s urbanization up-to a 30% level is relatively slow but the pace of urbanization speeds up thereafter, till it reaches about 60-65%. With an urban population of 31%, India is at a point of transition where the pace of urbanization will speed up. It is estimated that by the year 2050, the number of people living in Indian cities will touch 843 million. Government of India has allocated Rs. 70.6 billion (USD 1.2 billion) for Smart Cities in Budget 2014-15. India plans 100 new smart cities and will develop modern satellite towns around existing cities under the smart city program. It is for this reason that we need to plan our urban areas well and cannot wait any longer to do so. The relatively low base allows us to plan our urbanization strategy in the right direction by taking advantage of the latest developments in technology.
Energy Efficient Approach to Urbanization
Countries have adopted an energy intensive approach; others have adopted a more energy efficient growth path. In India, since we are still a developing economy, we have the opportunity to choose the path we want to take. Clearly, we should take the low energy path, especially in view of environmental sustainability as well as in view of the fact that we have to import a major part of our energy requirement, which is very vulnerable to the international political situation. From monitoring air quality, to monitoring the energy consumption of the whole city, the authorities and citizens get a clear and detailed view of the amount of energy required by the different services (public lighting, transportation, traffic lights, control cameras, heating/cooling of public buildings, and so on). In turn, this will make it possible to identify the main energy consumption sources and to set priorities in order to optimize their behavior. In addition, it will also be possible to enhance these services using sustainable approach of using solar energy and photovoltaic panels.
Concept of Smart City
Professor V Srinivas Chary, dean of research, Administrative Staff College of India, defined a ‘smart city’ as follows:
“A smart city can deliver good quality services to all its stakeholders, through the use of ICT, in a cost and resource effective way”.
The key aspects in this definition of a Smart City are as follows:
- Good quality services – A smart city provides the services, e.g. the Physical and Social infrastructure that is world class, to its residents.
- To all its stakeholders – This implies that the smart city should be able to provide these services to all stakeholders regardless of where they are and what is their economic or social status. The services should be affordable to all.
- Through the use of ICT – The usage of the Information Communication and Technology would be a key enabler in providing the services anytime and anywhere.
- Cost and resource effective way – The technology would enable the efficiency and cost reduction in the provision of the services.
A smart city may create the value in the following ways:
- Public spending is reduced in the long term on the public infrastructure in smart city and buildings with efficient building automation, water and sanitation facilities, electricity and high speed internet connectivity and incident reporting.
- The efficiency of public services and their quality leads to higher satisfaction quotient in the citizens which in turn leads to effective utilization of services provided.
- Provides base for better decision making for identification and enhancement of the city boundaries or inclusion of new services/infrastructure requirements in the city limits.
- Helps to promote social development holistically such as basic education, employment, food and housing security for all strata of society.
- Real time information availability – enhances citizen awareness about the city they live in by providing information update in real time and equipping them to make informed decisions.
- Intelligent networks of people, mobiles, sensors and actuators generating data at the rate of more than terabyte per second leading to advanced analytics in real time which helps in disaster management and recover post the disaster.
- Energy efficient smart cities lead to sustainable management of energy resources in the long run through smart grids, efficient distribution and metering and processing and measuring of other environmental parameters along to synchronize with changing demand patterns.
- Public and voluntary participation in government and e-government policy making.
- Increased public safety through efficient management of public emergency systems, civil defence, video surveillance and fire and other hazard prevention and detection.
- Holistic social development through provision of basic education for all the citizens including e-learning and teleworking, e-tourism and cultural information, e-commerce, etc.
Smart Cities are those that are able to attract investments and experts & professionals. Good quality infrastructure, simple and transparent online business and public services processes that make it easy to establish an enterprise and run it efficiently without any bureaucratic hassles are essential features of an investor-friendly smart city. Adequate availability of the required skills in the labor force is a necessary requirement of a Smart City. Investors, themselves, look for a decent living and so they also look for smart housing, high level of healthcare, entertainment and quality education. Safety and security is a basic need for them as to any other resident. A city that is considered unsafe is not attractive. Besides, an investor needs to be considered as someone who helps a city to prosper rather than someone who only profits from it.
A Smart City needs to identify its comparative or unique advantage and core competence in specific areas of economic activities and promote such activities aggressively, by developing the required institutional, physical, social and economic infrastructures for it and attracting investors and professionals to take up such activities. It also needs to support the required skill development for such activities in a big way. This would help a Smart City in developing the required environment for creation of economic activities and employment opportunities.
Pillars of Smart City
The Physical infrastructure includes the road, transport, electricity and other utility services that a city provides to its residents. The Social infrastructure includes the education, health and other community services that enhances the development of human and social capital of a city. The Institutional Infrastructure includes Security, Enforcement, Taxation, Environment sustainability etc. The Economic Infrastructure constitute the Job creation, GDP, livelihood of residents etc.
In the next section, we will discuss how the latest technology e.g. IoT has enabled the concept of smart city using the cases. We will be addressing the issues of social and physical infrastructure
Social Infrastructure using IoT
The social infrastructure includes the components of a smart city that enable the development of the humans and social capital. The following components comprise the social infrastructure:
- Health – Connected health care and patient monitoring
- Education – Connected private education
- Homes – Smart buildings
- Community – Connected communities
- Entertainment – Connected gaming and entertainment
Connected Health Care and Patient Monitoring system
With the Internet of Things technology, the remote patient monitoring system would enable the doctors to monitor the patients remotely. This would enable short hospital stays and the care of the patients may be done at their homes. Consequently the same hospital capacity may be used for more critical patients who cannot be treated at home. Some of the examples may be chronic disease patients, old patients, patients recuperating from sickness etc.
Security of the data between the doctor and patient would be the critical factor in realizing such a remote patient monitoring system.
Internet of Things technology would enable the remote delivery of education which is much closer to the real experience. The teachers and students may be outside of the campus, but still all the teacher would be able to share all the in-class resources anywhere. The students would also be able to collaborate on group activities remotely. Such a connected learning experience will enable a much larger and farther reach of the schools. More number of students will benefit and the geographical location would also not be a hindrance.
The current web technologies are quite close to such a connected experience. Some incremental changes in existing web-class room sessions would be able to make the overall experience more class room like.
Internet of Things technology may be used to enable multiple facets of a home. From security to remote controlling of equipment, inventory management, garbage disposal the IoT technology would make the life of the residents easier. Remote video surveillance of homes and automatic notification to police or fire brigade in case of an emergency would give a piece of mind to its owners. Automatic inventory system, garbage disposal system, utility control system would ease the life of the residents. Similarly, remote controlling the cooking/warming of food, enabling the heating/cooling system of the house, cleaning of house, electricity to switch on/off, mood lights/music according to season/time etc would provide a much richer experience to the residents.
Although remote security systems are already available, but controlling different gadgets e.g. microwave, refrigerator, vacuum, dish-washer, laundry, electricity system, inventory system, etc would need some radical innovations to have them all available remotely. The security of such a system would be very important otherwise, someone with malicious intentions may cause safety and security risks.
With the life of the people getting busier, traveling associated with their jobs, people are not able to find time to communicate or collaborate with the other community members. A smart city would allow active communication of its members regardless of their location through a connected community over the Internet. A connected community will allow people to seek other people with the common interests, hobbies, religion/political beliefs to collaborate effectively regardless of their physical location at any time. The people would also be able to make effective decisions by seeking and sharing opinions on topics of common interest over internet. People would be able to express their opinions regardless of their physical location at a time, thus enabling a much better participation of the members. A connected community would also allow members to seek help, opinion, and suggestion on topics of their interest by a click of a button.
The technology required to develop web-portals for collaboration of the members is already available. If a person has access to Internet (s)he may access multi-purpose groups, and participate in community meetings conducting that may be conducted using web technologies.
A smart city would enable various methods of entertainment to be available whenever/wherever. Movies, theater shows would not only be allowed to be booked remotely, but may also be delivered over the internet where people may enjoy them in the comfort of their homes. The mall experience may be virtualized over internet. Various kinds of games may be played using online gaming where many people can play together in a virtual gaming environment.
The pieces of technology required to enable such a connected entertainment experience are mostly available. What is needed is just a viable business case.
Physical Infrastructure using IoT
Most city governments have different departments to oversee the services for managing different operations such as electricity department, transport department, water department, sewage department and many more. However, these departments do not fully inter communicate their plans and activities. Hence they services as independent entities. In developing a smart city infrastructure, it is essential to think of cities as multifaceted systems with departments as subsystems sharing all assets and resources.
It is important that cities in future cities share their process information to better co-ordinate their infrastructure issues based on the simple design principles such as modularity, exportability, interoperability, extensibility, and scalability.
Infrastructure, the underlying structures that support our systems, is inherently hidden from us. But without it our current cities couldn’t possibly exist. Without finding ways to improve it, our future cities will struggle to survive. Here are some of the ways Physical infrastructure issues that can be addressed using IOT
Smart electricity grids can regulate and optimize energy-use based on supply and demand. Smart meters can record the energy usage at homes and businesses helping city planners determine the requirement of electricity. City planners can also know when usage is at its peak for each residence or business, and give back this information to consumers. Appliances which consumer electricity will have sensors which will switch off automatically during non-peak times, thereby decreasing the demand during electricity “rush hours” and thus charges and electricity bills.
Water utilities typically consume large energy in a city. This consumption can be shifted to the non-peak hours if water utilities can connect with electric grid or any other electric utility, which communicates with the grid. By coordinating with the electric utility and shifting water pumping to non-peak hours, the water utility can reduce its energy consumption (and ultimately its bill), help the electric utility avoid problems and allow other more critical and less flexible functions (such as hospitals) to maintain uninterrupted supply.
Install a sensor in the sewage collection bins, that is capable of determining the filling level of waste (glass, paper, cardboard, cans, etc.) in the containers. Data is transmitted to the municipality management center through GPRS communication to the municipality.
The city center can have a dashboard that gives it statistics of sewage at different locations and it can appropriately manage the pickup trucks schedule. In addition, the best routes can be analyzed by the garbage bins based on the updated data to pick up the waste. This way pickup service will become more efficient while reducing costs and CO2 emissions.
– All vehicles on the road can be deployed with smart meters which keep transmitting back road traffic and other important stats. Central repository can filter out and relay information to drivers for smart driving. For drivers who ignore this signs an Electronic toll system can be deployed were tolls will vary based on traffic i.e. high tolls for high traffic roads.
– Smart sensors can be fixed in parking spots that can collect the real-time status of municipal and garage metered parking spots. The sensors can track if a spot is engaged, empty, or terminated. It sends this data to a data management system, which links to a mobile application for drivers. Once a person can use an application to find a vacant parking spot, the city can basically change traffic patterns and consumer behavior. This can minimize traffic congestion, reduce carbon emissions and eliminate labor ineptitudes associated with parking implementation.
Sensors are installed at various places to gather information such as surveillance cameras, water level sensor, rain gauges, and seismometers. When the information gathered crosses a threshold, an alert is sent to cities security system. All moving transport objects such as train, vehicles are stopped so that appropriate action can be taken before it becomes a disaster.
How can India make an IoT enabled smart city?
IoT enabled smart city presents a picture of ubiquitous computing. Thus, IoT can be enabled in a Smart City by using the pervasive and immersive applications of existing and enhanced capabilities of internet technology. Internet connectivity can be realized in almost all the devices by deploying microcontroller in them. However as first step government can start IoT implementation in the devices used in public places such as CCTV cameras, traffic lights, street lights, public transport, public parking sensors, parks, shopping malls etc. In order to make it a valuable offering pervasive algorithms can be used to design services around the data generated.
Implementation phases of IoT enabled smart cities
It is necessary to come up with the ecosystem of IoT in a Smart City. Overarching Framework that may be used to deploy an IoT enabled smart city.
- In this phase a proof of concept cities can be picked up for feasibility analysis.
- The different services that can be offered in the beginning can be identified.
- Understanding of how multiple smart cities can be developed based on the success of initial phase smart cities
The conceptualization can be done keeping in mind the social and physical infrastructure build up. The feasibility and implementation aspects are discussed below. Prototype cities can be come up with. The US and Singapore are ready to fund the concept of smart city in India.
The setting up of mobility infrastructure must ensure optimal cost implications on public transport systems usage. Adequate importance need to be given to all modes of transportation i.e. public transport including trains, buses, taxis, metros and private transport which range from pedestrians to cyclists to LMV owners. The rails, roads, footpaths need to be enabled with IoT capabilities such as sensors, routers, avalanches, pervasive computing.
Reliable Utility Services
The intelligent devices must maintain regular supply of water, gas, electricity, sanitation, solid waste management by employing energy efficiency models that can be implemented.
The legislative factors must be clarified so that they don’t cause hurdles in the development.
How these infrastructures can be operationalized. Identify the business aspects in order to make the concept viable for investment and implementation. The bureaucratic forces need to be minimized so that there is optimum usage of resources.
Firms and government can come up with service models to provide the following features:
- Cost effective
Some examples of service offerings can be location based services , wearables enabled with pervasive computing , structural health of buildings , noise monitoring , waste management , traffic congestion , city energy consumption , air quality control city energy consumption check , smart lighting , automation and salubrity of public buildings.
The concept of IoT, once deployed in initial phase of smart cities, will not be difficult to replicate in other places. Since government spending on the setting up of network and visible infrastructure is aggressive, it will be advisable to start the conceptualization of second phase along with the kick-off of first phase.
There will be many technology companies who will compete for the services. Since Smart cities concept is catalyzed by the government, there will be many takers for such technologies.
Moreover, since there will be a base of standard technologies already available, there will be competition in the services offering. This will not be able to make a clear winner out of the competitors. Each player will have some share of wallet.
The central government will launch the smart cities project with PPP (public private partnership) model. The model would have viable gap funding by the government as well. It has been estimated that about 7000000 Crores in 20 years which translates 35000 Crores of investment will be required per year.
PPP model is preferred to attract private capital typically by two types of investors:
- big investors who are capable of providing lump sum capital amount and
- Small investors who are capable of attracting the critical mass due to their reach.
The funding mechanisms that can be followed by the PPP partners:
- Prototype stage funding of innovations : This stage of financing huge and very difficult to get. However it is very useful in assessing the risk and feasibility of the project at this stage.
As shown in the graph above following strategies of PPP model that will make the complete lifecycle of smart cities feasible:
- The R&D can be financed by grants by government.
- Later prototypes and deployment needs huge capital expenditure which would require bridging of capital investments from different sources. Financial engineering would be required.
- Private venturing and debt financing will be possible soon after the maturity stage has been reached.
Thus, the PPP partnership model can be made feasible by timely contribution of funds from its contributors in the government and private sectors.
The government must provide 3 kinds of necessary arrangements which will boost the participation in PPP model:
- How to incentivize the private players to collaborate
- Cost benefit vs risk analysis
- Investment security mechanisms to protect data
There can be several uptake measures for the market to facilitate financing. The socio-economic benefits are linked with effective energy use. However, the private financers are not attracted much by the economic rate of return of the project if it involves huge investment. The IRR of the project components may be very high due to the limitations of tariff and renewable subsidies.
The stakeholders involved in the project popularity can be:
- Promoter bodies :
These bodies promote the SMART cities concept e.g. administrative bodies, national authorities, government agencies.
- Achieving bodies :
Those who implement the projects i.e. the firms, construction companies.
- Financial institutions :
Banks, capitals management bodies, foundations, managers of programs.
- Certification authorities :
This element is very to make the PPP model secure and low risk taking for private financers.
- Guarantor bodies
The huge investment areas such as infrastructure and energy requires guarantor bodies to drive the costly investments
Smart cities enabling a sustainable model (Green City)
Millions of people are moving to cities, often triggering complications such as unplanned settlements and lack of proper infrastructure to fulfill even basic needs. Cities and transport also play a key role in the climate change. Transport is responsible for 22% of energy-related greenhouse gas emissions worldwide, and these emissions are rising faster than those for any other sector. Cities contribute about 70% of energy-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, despite only accounting for 2% of global land.
The transport sector is already one of greatest sources of greenhouse gas emissions, a situation that will only worsen as exploding transport demand in urban areas continues to be met largely by personal transport (motor vehicles). Efficient and customer-friendly public transport can curb emissions while directly improving living conditions for urban dwellers. Improved public transport planning and better access for passengers depends to a large extent on the availability and quality of data and information. To address this aspect of transport planning and implementation, Smart Cities will focus on opening up and linking data across sectors in the urban development space, and working with a wide group of stakeholders to pursue sustainable planning and improved customer experiences in the area of public transportation.
In addition, below are some of the other smart city ideas that can help build a sustainable city
- Smart grids offer an opportunity of minimizing overall environmental impacts of energy consumption.
- Smart water management through the use of ICT to improve both water and energy footprints, taking into account life cycle assessments
- Energy efficiency of ICT equipment/networks that will emit IoT signals is a key factor to be taken into consideration in the development of smart sustainable cities in order to ensure that the solution implemented will have a minimum impact on the environment and will give a real benefit.
- conservation and effective use of energy and other natural resources such as water using ICT technologies is key to the smart city development
Some of the ideas discussed in the report and in this section are key items for the success of any smart city. A smart city that advances sustainable development practices will be the most successful cities.
Use cases of Smart City in India
Our current hospitals have long waits due to non-availability of beds, since a number of beds are occupied by some chronic / recuperating patients etc, For example: Patients of broken bones, slip disk, post-surgery recovery etc. The model of the proposed smart city would allow for some of these patients to be monitored at home. Although, the in-home patient monitoring system would have some technological cost associated with it, but the savings would be larger since the cost of a hospital bed (room) is generally much higher, and the cost of technology tends to come down with scales. Also, the hospital bed would now be available for a much needy person, thereby increasing the patient treatment ratio of the hospital. It also has the advantage that the patients would get their home environment, where they tend to get better sooner.
In our country a lot of kids cannot go to the schools because of unavailability of schools/teachers. The smart education can be impactful in such a scenario. A smart school may have the class lectures be attended when someone is at home. If the cost of a computer and internet connection required to deliver such education can be made affordable or borne by the government, then the problem of lack of teacher / school space may be solved to a great degree.
No one enjoys clogged cities with overcrowded vehicular population (with its attendant pollution), or with metro or local train systems bursting at the seams. For example:
- Mumbai suburban railways carry 7.5 million commuters per day, which is the highest passenger density, and most intensively utilized system in the world
- Delhi Metro has an average daily ridership of 2.5 million commuters
- New Delhi has the largest vehicular population in the country, with more than 7.5 million registered cars, and 1,400 new cars added to city roads every day.
Urban transportation is an important element for smart cities. Hence, the need to review city Traffic management in smart city (including metros, BRT’s, monorail, trams, waterways, walkways, bicycle tracks, etc.), to provide updates on roads and other routes closed for any purpose leading to
- Let the citizens take better informed decisions for last mile connectivity for using public transport management system
- Community carpooling among citizens of smart city leading to reduced transport-related greenhouse gas emissions
- Reduced personal mode of travel by use of online systems including lesser work related travel to work or staggered travel times for flexible working hours
- Lower fuel and power consumption by vehicles and infrastructure, leading to improved local air quality and related environmental conditions.
A smart grid and a smart city can manage checking and control of the city’s power demand and energy consumption to either reduce the utility’s peak power demand and/or schedule it during times when the utility’s rates are lowest. For example A smart city served by a smart grid can associate traffic light checking to determine which traffic lights (or other critical facilities) are unworkable due to a utility power outage or vice versa. Another instance is the communication between smart grid and consumers so that power can be appropriately distributed as and when needed only.
Disaster Management System
Smart Cities definitely will focus on building up systems that are resilience to natural disasters, such as extreme weather, flooding, heat and water stress, caused by climate change. Confronted by a natural disaster, smart cities can use sophisticated ICT infrastructure and analytical capabilities to enhance and coordinate the information flow between multiple public agencies, such as transport authorities, emergency services and energy providers, and citizens. With the help of networks that are connected in a smart city, a city municipality can reach the majority of its citizens at short notice.
For example a disaster resilience solution will involves observation systems, information gathering capabilities, data analysis and decision making aids, together with an intelligent warning system, all linked together in an interoperable manner. When the observation crosses a certain threshold level, a alert is issued. This alert is then circulated to the municipality office.
Traffic Management System
The urban public transport management system would lead to reductions in congestion and traveler frustration a more streamlined, efficient and cost effective system leading to greater affordability for transport providers and travelers. Mobility demand in cities is highly variable over time, leading to a continual disparity between the levels of service supply and demand. A holistic response will look at both the supply of and demand for mobility services, by:
- Actively managing capacity over time to make the most efficient use of existing physical infrastructure (operational efficiency)
- Distributing reliable information to travelers about the relative costs and benefits of different travel options, thereby promoting behavior change.
Smart solutions can facilitate both of these objectives, especially when supported by wider policy measures that promote changes in traveler’s behavior (such as flexible or staggered working hours). Integrated management takes advantage of multiple transport modes, including automobiles, buses, light rail, and even walking, to manage the movement of people more efficiently across modes. Information from all modes is consolidated through data analytics and a single platform, to maximize the total flow of people over time. This relies on a wide range of data collected from sensors along the roadway and rapid transit systems, smartphone Global Positioning Systems (GPS), and real-time information feeds about road closures, maintenance works and weather conditions. By assimilating these data feeds, commuters can be provided with instant information about the optimal route to their destination, whether by car, another mode, or a combination. This testifies to the huge economic, environmental and social benefits that can be reaped through improved use of digital solutions.
Challenges of Smart City:
Accommodation for lower strata of population
As discussed above, the usage of technology would improve the quality of life of citizens in a positive manner thereby making the smart city a place where people would aspire to live. The better quality of life would attract a premium to live there and hence the property prices in a smart city would be higher. The higher prices would make the living of lower strata of population un-affordable. The middle-income and high income population is dependent on lower strata of population for many things e.g. maids, drivers, cleaners, laborers etc. This would cause the problems that our existing cities are facing today, for example development of unauthorized dwelling e.g. Jhuggi-Jhopri clusters. In order to avoid such a situation, the government needs to look at the accommodation of such strata in the blue print of smart city from the beginning.
Up-gradation of existing cities
Apart from looking into new cities, the government should also look at how satellite towns near mega cities, existing cities/villages can be integrated with smart cities along with construction of settlements along industrial corridors will be undertaken. In some interviews the government officials seem to be looking at upgrading the role of urban local bodies (ULB). But the inability of ULB has been reflecting in the existing cities and various issues.
So the government will have to work on upgrading either the skillsets/capacity of ULB or setting up a nodal body, which can work on looking into up-gradation of new cities. Otherwise a new divide between old and new city will get created in the future.
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