• Lucas Tinoco (Brazil)

Improving digital services by integrating geospatial data with IoT systems



Internet of Things (IoT) is the networking of several everyday physical devices that use information and communication technology (ICT), that enables remote operation and automated control. It includes research disciplines and technologies that possibilities the Internet to reach out into real-world objects [2]. These connect-to-the-internet objects are equipped with many sensors measuring with high precision the temperature, electromagnetism, humidity, radiation, etc. With the rise of multi-sensory mobile phones now have better sensing capabilities, being able to measure acceleration and location, record audio/noise, and others. These Internet-enabled objects provide these measurements taking into consideration the geographic location of each measurement [2].

To be able to exploit this variety of IoT measurements (in space, time, and type), geospatial data analysis is used to provide insights and answers to more complex queries [2]. Geospatial data can improve IoT and ICT applications in different ways. IoT is useful to collect and analyze data from a location, whereas GIS provides the data’s visualization and storytelling. The combination of both provides stakeholders with a complete picture of different data. They can be used to create smart buildings and even help during natural disasters [3]. The installation of IoT sensors on the exterior of the building can be applied to measure the amount of sunlight received and the wind speed reaching the building’s structure. With more of these IoT sensors inside the building, temperature, humidity, and level of noise can be monitored. This information can be used to predict the amount of energy consumption throughout the day and the use of this knowledge can be used to create strategies to optimize energy usage.

Furthermore, GIS and IoT can be applied in designing evacuation systems that possibilities building residents to fast evacuate [3]. Cities can combine GIS and IoT data to study and simulate the impact of different natural disasters on cities. Considering the possibility of a flood, towns can use coastal flood and river line simulations to help city planners understand preliminary flood risk in different city areas, which would assist them in making safer and appropriate design decisions [3]. Even though the combination of IoT and GIS has many potential usages, there are still significant challenges, such as data integration, data storage, data security, and hardware ruggedization [3].

Data integration can be a problem considering that IoT datasets can come in different formats, such as images, sounds, texts, and videos. Data storage became an issue considering that GIS data is aerial photographs, which consist of large files. Furthermore, data security is a big issue knowing that hackers are interested in the datasets accumulated in IoT devices and GIS [3]. Finally, one problem with this combination is the hardware ruggedization. As these IoT sensors will be installed outside to collect data, they should be ruggedized to withstand extreme temperatures, shocks, and vibrations [3]. This process can have a high cost. IoT and ICT applications can be improved via Geospatial data. The combination of the possibilities of the creation of smart buildings provides great insights related to natural disaster occurrences. However, these two together can create challenges that should be mitigated.