A public access open data network has been launched in Sydney, connecting the city to the Internet of Things (IoT). This comes not long after an identical deployment in Wollongong, NSW, as well as in many other cities around the world.
The Ultimo-based network is the result of a collaboration between the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) and local IoT integrator Meshed. A gateway is installed on top of UTS’ Building 10, and it is expected to reach as far as Darling Harbour. It is designed to support low power (battery/solar), long range (up to a 5km radius) smart sensor devices and will allow anyone within range to connect their device to the internet for free, without requiring any other wireless technologies such as Wi-Fi or cellular data.
One motivation behind the network deployment is the ability to monitor the city’s health. Meshed’s sales and strategy director Catherine Caruana-McManus has likened the network to a ‘Fitbit for the city’.
“The idea of the Fitbit of the city is for people – particularly policy-makers and stakeholders across the city – to get a real sense of the state of the city’s amenity, not just pollution, noise or traffic congestion in isolated but to bring all of that information together,” she said in a comment to nextmedia.
The network also brings Sydney one step closer to becoming the world’s next smart city; utilising the IoT to create a technologically connected city where everything from traffic lights to electric vehicle charging stations are connected the Internet.
The technology used for the network is LoRaWANTM, a global open standard that is being used around the world for large IoT applications.