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Sensor cloud – steps in infrastructure

Conventionally cloud databases are used for storing media files, large chunks of text and various analysed pieces of data, which require nearly limitless storage.

Traditionally it will take the path from generation to processing, to finally storing in the cloud, a process that can take anywhere from minutes to years, depending on the properties of the file. To minimise, and even eliminate, this time, sensor cloud is under development in different industries.

Sensor cloud’s main objective is to transfer data from sensors to the cloud immediately, thus enabling the cloud to route the data to IT systems as fast as possible. The time cut is of great importance to time-sensitive operations, such as manufacturing plants and risk management in health and safety monitoring jobs. The new way to wire data from sensors to IT systems automatically reduces energy consumption and in turn, boosts effectiveness.

The first industry that has adopted sensor cloud is infrastructure and namely bridges. Inspired, designed and installed by researchers from Washington University, the sensor-to-cloud model is in use on Mackinac Bridge in Michigan. Installed in late September 2016, it features self-powering sensors embedded into the concrete of the bridge. The sensors collect data on stress, strain and structural difficulties to the centre of the cloud, where it is forwarded on to be analysed. On a larger scale, the sensors should self-monitor smart civil infrastructures to prevent disastrous effects of earthquakes, floods, and other environmental causes.

The sensors are a great step towards smarter infrastructures that can finally benefit from automation even after the completion of the projects. Unless the sensors get broken, they need practically no support – physical or financial – whatsoever, and further costs are only incurred for analysis of the data.

Similarly, Dashboard is exploring possibilities in infrastructure data analysis and monitoring. Based on their experience from O&G, Dashboard has the solutions that infrastructure data processing requires, and is readily available for all companies in the sector.