Smart Campus Use Cases
One recent addition to the available arsenal of smart campus tools comes from WRLD. Institutions can create fully-navigable, graphically-dynamic, detailed 3D representations of their campuses, including building Indoor Maps.
Abertay University in the UK used WRLD technology to model their entire campus, as well as the interiors of all major buildings. This includes every room and hallway, on every floor. The geospatially accurate map can be downloaded onto a mobile device for easy navigation by students, faculty members, and visitors.
In the future, this 3D map could be used to help in wayfinding, route planning, and learning more about the campus and the resources it has available. Maps can use Internet of Things (IoT) data from sensors across the campus to provide location-specific, real-time alerts and information about the availability of resources, parking, hours of operation, and more.
Furthermore, this project is a novel use of digital twin technology. Using strategically placed sensors, the map can be synchronized with the real-world campus and updated to match in real time. If a particular area of a building is shut down for renovations, that change is reflected in the building’s digital twin.
Edinburgh Napier University is planning a similar project with WRLD. Many campuses across the world are investing in smart campus technology to stay competitive and cutting-edge in today’s crowded education field.
Smart campuses are opening in other areas of the world as well. Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University in Dubai opened a smart building that increases operational and resource efficiency with controlled lighting, energy and air-conditioning. The smart building operates under a smart system, the first of its kind in the world. A total of four smart systems in the building gather data and send it to a smart application that has the ability to respond and make adjustments, thanks to artificial intelligence, and yet meet best practices of sustainability and innovation. The smart application even allows users to control lighting and temperatures in individual offices, classrooms, and meeting rooms, as well as use wayfinding, offering a customized experience to students and staff.
Technologies Needed for a Smart Campus
There are a number of different technologies that come together to form the infrastructure that creates and supports smart campuses:
The wireless protocol that we use in our homes to connect our computers and mobile devices is essential to a successful smart campus. Using networked indoor and outdoor routers and gateways, Wi-Fi creates uninterrupted coverage that enables sensors, cameras, and people on campus to connect with each other.
Sensors and Beacons
Once continuous Wi-Fi coverage has been established, you need devices to collect information from around the campus. Beacons and sensors, such as motion, light, and proximity sensors, send continuous streams of data across the Wi-Fi network.
Those used in an indoor positioning system (IPS), like those designed by Senion, IndoorAtlas, and Cisco CMX, can track people and objects throughout indoor spaces in real-time. Powerful integrations are possible when sensors and beacons are paired with the 3D mapping tools mentioned earlier.
Other devices that communicate important information across a smart campus’s Wi-Fi network are surveillance cameras for enhanced security applications, smart lights for energy-efficient lighting applications, smart thermostats, ID cards, and smart locks that can track who comes in and out of sensitive areas in campus buildings.
The next necessary components for a smart university campus are the APIs that allow all of the networked sensors and devices to talk to each other and accomplish useful tasks. These can be static, but smart campus trends are pushing toward open APIs. These types of APIs can be accessed by devices outside of those originally intended for inclusion. Open APIs allow innovation by giving everyone the opportunity to create new and novel ways of integrating technologies into the existing network.
This means that students and faculty members can participate in the smart campus, improving it and pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. In short, open APIs help people make the smart campus even smarter.
Don’t Forget About Privacy
Privacy is an important consideration when designing a system that tracks people and retains that tracked data. Systems need to be designed to prevent unintended intrusions into personal privacy, or unlawful or unethical uses of that data. Whenever possible, tracked data should be rendered anonymous and should comply with all applicable regulations.
Create Your Smart Campus
Smart campuses are becoming more prevalent, and as the technology develops, integrations will grow more powerful and provide more benefits to students and faculties alike. 3D maps have the power to bring the entirety of smart campus technologies together into a single, fully-navigable platform that lowers operational costs, increases resource efficiency, offers better student and visitor experiences, and much more.
Contact WRLD to get started creating your smart campus today!