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Tech to play major role for smart Panjim

In this era of digitisation, nothing can move without technology. It not only brings in transparency, speed, accuracy, artificial intelligence and easy life with minimum human interface, but also reduces cost in the long run. Smart city concept is an immediate offshoot of this and hi-tech technology is being used across the globe to make a better city. Panjim too is undergoing this sea change.

With rapid urbanisation and rising population an exuberant demand is being created to the resource base which is services for water, sanitation, power, transportation, waste management etc. Majority of the populace are now connected with mobile phones and many even know how to use its smart services.

The ulterior goal is to make the city “smarter” by efficient management of resources and infrastructure, greener environment, and smart governance resulting in a better quality of living of for city citizens. This can be enabled by the effective use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) tools, which have the ability to provide eco‐friendly and economically viable solutions for cities. (See Graphics)

To make it cost effective sensors or metering points, like smart metering communications technologies that will be deployed is being designed to minimize those costs and provide excellent value. Besides, first time the Smart City special purpose vehicle (SPV) is doing innovations with an adequate low capital expenditure (Capex) and high operational expenditure (Opex).

“Today our lives are fully dependent on technology interventions. Be it mobile, internet, interactive television, artificial intelligence etc everywhere technology is engaged. Technology is only facilitating easier, cheaper, faster life with transparency in work module. For common citizens we need to be more transparent and communicative and I am confident that in this, technology will play a major role and that is why Panjim is moving towards a teachnology-based smart city very soon,” said Mr Sidharth Kuncalienkar, director of Imagine Panaji Smart City Development Limited (IPSCDL).

As citizen interactions rise and internet of things (IoT) connections explode, digital infrastructure generates an ever-expanding wealth of data. But much of that rich trove of information remains untapped. Making this data publicly available is not a new concept, but one that still has significant unrealized value. With so much data being generated on traffic patterns, employment, public health, crime, energy usage, waste management, and more, there are great opportunities for app developers to create new solutions. But it has to be smart data, not just big data.

Makeover of a 175-year old city of Panjim is not easy and it is a humongous task. To ensure this IPSCDL will soon be setting up a Goa Intelligent City Management System (GICMS) of Panjim city which will be heavily automated with advanced technology to collect and analyse huge data, leading to minimum human engagement. This center will not only be video wall to watch the activities through various cameras (nearly 400) across Panjim but there will be standard processing systems and all information will immediately be passed on to the responsible agency for its immediate and quick action.

Ensuring high reliability and longer life span communications equipment and modules is equally important and hence resources will be placed in different environment depending on the application. By taking the example of smart grid, smart meters and the communications technologies supporting them should be able to stay online for 10, 15, or even 20 years without much maintenance.

Therefore, metering communications technologies has to be highly reliable and designed with industrial‐grade specifications to meet extreme environmental conditions of shock, corrosion, temperature, vibration, humidity, and interferences with other equipment and machines in the deployment environment.

“The role of technology has increasingly become important for economic development of cities for providing advancement in infrastructure, optimisation of resources and innovativeness thereby enhancing living standards of its citizens,” said Mr Swayandipta Pal Chaudhuri, Managing Director and CEO of IPSCDL.

To address the evolving challenges cities face, a framework/application-enabled platform is required that helps improve service delivery to communities and their constituents. This platform should aggregate and organize data from city infrastructure sensors and other data sources in a consistent, easy-to-use format and optimizes services delivery to engage residents and improve overall quality of life.

Digitization platform for Cities:

Collects and integrates sensor data from multiple sensors and sensor types

Normalises the aggregated data to a common data model to make comparisons more meaningful so city operators can construct working digital models of their communities

Exposes Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) through which local and global Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) and city applications developers can plug in to the city management infrastructure and provide public service capabilities This digitised platform will help Panjim city extract, compute, and move data from connected things to IoT applications to deliver better outcomes and services.

The platform will get the right data to the right applications at real time – across edge, private cloud, public cloud, and hybrid environments – while executing policies to enforce data ownership, privacy, security and even data sovereignty laws. These are all critical requirements for any smart city and community deployment.

The platform will provide connective cloud-enabled/on-premise software to correlate and contextualize information collected by third-party sensors. It aggregates and normalizes the contextual information into a common language understood by third-party APIs. At the top of the framework, the analyzed data will be delivered to the urban operator via applications for their action and hence job generated will be engaged at a faster pace and in a more efficient manner. [H]

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