Wednesday, 05 Oct, 2011 Technology

PlanIT Valley: Futuristic Self-Sufficient City with Millions of Sensors Mounted In its Area


According to Living PlanIT, a Portuguese firm, a city could manage itself in a more efficient way and without extra supervision from people if millions of sensors were installed across its area and all of them were connected to an urban operating system. The latter would allow the sensors to communicate with each other.

For example, in case of a fire outbreak in a building, the sensors would be able to detect the fire, alarm the inhabitants and direct them to a safe exit. In the meantime, other sensors would inform a fire station about the outbreak and control traffic lights in a way so the fire engineers could get to the building as fast as possible.

The company says that such sensors could be used to monitor traffic, power consumption, water use and more. A smart city, according to the Portuguese company, will be able to cut costs and improve the quality of life for its inhabitants.

It is worth mentioning that McLaren Electronic Systems, a company that manufactures sensors for F1 cars, has come up with the Urban OS that can connect millions of such sensors throughout a city.

At the moment the firm is working on a demo city dubbed PlanIT Valley, which will be found in southern Portugal. Undoubtedly in order to build a city the company would need several years, but Living PlanIT hopes that in the end it will create one of the most sustainable metropolises in the world.

In order to be able to support numerous applications, the operation system will run PlaceApps, an urban equivalent of apps one can find in a smartphone. It will also be possible for independent developers to come up with their own apps for certain uses.

Smartphone users will also be able to connect to the Urban OS and monitor and manage household appliances and power systems, reports BBC.

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