5G technology to monitor air quality

5G technology to monitor air quality
Create a global monitoring system that can provide exact data on harmful substances in the air and the air quality

The University of Helsinki and Nokia Bell Labs are developing a technology which uses the 5G network to generate precise, smart real-time data on the environment and monitor air quality.

The aim of the project is to create a global system that can provide exact data on harmful substances in the air and monitor air quality. The resulting information could also be used in a variety of devices.

Professor Sasu Tarkoma, head of the University of Helsinki’s Department of Computer Science said: “Finland has top-notch experts both in atmospheric and data sciences and in 5G development. Through the interdisciplinary MegaSense cooperation project, we can significantly improve air quality monitoring, which in turn will enable increasingly precise data for decision-making,

“We are also working on mobile applications which would enable all of us to increase our wellbeing through air quality data.”

Monitoring air quality globally

The MegaSense projects is based on a dense network of air quality sensors covering an urban area to detect air polluters and develop a real-time overview of air quality. Results from the sensors are supplemented by data from the University of Helsinki’s SMEAR stations in Finland and China.

All the data collected is then combined and processed via the 5G network.

MegaSense also uses an existing air pollution map and prediction models which take into consideration:

  • Wind direction; and
  • The location of the air quality sensors.

The calibrated air quality data and the information refined from it can also be used in a variety of applications.

Tarkoma said: “This means that the technology could be used in urban planning, for example, or in wellbeing and health applications as well as in products relating to air conditioning, smart windows, various mobile devices, phone apps and HD maps.”

The first MegaSense pilot is currently ongoing at the University of Helsinki’s Kumpula Campus in Helsinki, Finland. There the air quality sensors have been connected to Nokia’s NetLeap/NDAC network as a cloud service, and the data processing and application use take place in a local cloud server.

Source: University of Helsinki

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