Recently, one of our favorite industry publications, Electricity Today, published a really interesting article on the smart cities of tomorrow.
So what makes a city smart? As defined by the Smart Cities Council, a smart city harnesses digital technology and intelligent design “to create smart, sustainable cities with high-quality living and high-quality jobs.” This includes such things as creating interdependent public service systems – everything from “electricity, water, and gas utilities to transportation systems to municipal lighting systems.”
A smart city gathers data from devices and sensors embedded in the infrastructure. Think: streets and highways; the power grids; high-rise, municipal, and other buildings; public spaces and parks; and much more. This data in then shared through a combined wired and wireless communications system. Smart software is then used to provide essential and valuable information and digitally-enhanced services like public transportation arrival and departure times, direction and traffic maps, crime updates, emergency notifications, and more.
The electrical industry is a leader in the creation of intelligent urban design. The Electricity Today article cited an example of how a utility solving a problem in the electric grid through its communication network could utilize the exact same technology to improve street lighting. An improvement in street lighting has a multitude of benefits for cities. For example, better lit streets reduce or prevent crime, which leads to citizen safety. What’s more, a city that uses smart technology on the street lighting grid has the ability to conserve energy, which improves the efficiency of operations and is simply better for the planet.
At DVM, two of our partners, Schneider Electric and Siemens, are part of the Smart Cities Council, and others are also working to make cities smarter. We are extremely proud to be a part of this very important movement that drives cities toward intelligent futures.