Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

NEC's M2M tech to improve waste collection service in Santander

Iain Morris
October 15, 2014

Japan’s NEC has revealed it is working on a smart waste collection service in the Spanish city of Santander that could reduce costs by cutting down on unnecessary trips to refuse bins.

The service has been developed in partnership with ASCAN, a local waste management service provider, and uses sensors to collect real-time data on rubbish and bin levels – allowing the cleaning team to improve collection intervals and routes.

Describing the technology in more detail, NEC (Tokyo, Japan) says its M2M sensors will record volumes of rubbish before the data is relayed to a control center for analysis.

Santander’s street sweeping team and citizens will be able to use an app called Cuida Santander to report problems with illegal dumping.

Refuse collection vehicles are to be equipped with on-board GPS tracking and navigation systems, and the software will automatically recommend the most efficient collection routes to workers and highlight locations that need immediate attention.

Meanwhile, environmental sensors on the vehicles will monitor carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide emissions from car exhausts, which can cause smog and high ozone levels.

“This project will help ensure the city of Santander has the most efficient waste collection service, while helping to reduce vehicle emissions and running costs,” said Inigo de la Serna, Mayor of Santander. “Once again Santander is demonstrating itself as an innovator in the use of smart city technologies to improve the delivery of public services for citizens.”

NEC says the service builds on its experience of integrating smart city M2M sensors with data analysis and visualization software.

The Japanese player says it also offers smart cities its Cloud City Operations Center (CCOC) platform, which can be used to monitor key performance indicators relating to a wide range of public services.

This allows key data sets from around a city to be cross-referenced and displayed on large format touchscreen displays in the control room, allowing traffic levels – for instance – to be continuously monitored.
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