Friday, May 23, 2014

New ISO Standard Addresses City Performance Indicators

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) announced a new standard last week: ISO 37120:2014 – Sustainable development of communities — Indicators for city services and quality of life. The new standard is applicable to any city, municipality or local government desiring to measure its performance in a comparable and verifiable manner, irrespective of size, location, or level of development. The standard covers a number of areas, only some of which are: energy, environment, governance, safety, solid waste, transportation, wastewater, and water and sanitation.

The standard was launched during the Global Cities Summit organized by the University of Toronto's Global City Indicators Facility, one of the organizations involved in its development. Also launched at the Global Cities Summit was the World Council on City Data, a new entity that will build an international platform for open, comparable, and ISO-standardized data for participating cities from around the world.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Municipal Financing Tools for Smart City Projects

The Smart Cities Council, an industry coalition to improve the livability, workability and sustainability of the world’s cities, recently announced the Smart Cities Financing Guide. This new resource helps cities understand the financing options available for investments in smart technologies. Developed for the Council by the Center for Urban Innovation at Arizona State University, the Financing Guide outlines 28 of the most promising financing tools for urban infrastructure enhancements, including some techniques that do not require any upfront money from a city. It “Knowledge of financial instruments and the processes to engage in sustainable financing of technologies is vital, yet few know how to navigate these complexities”offers criteria for evaluating financing options and allows city leaders to differentiate which approach is best for their project and community.

The Financing Guide is part of the Council’s premium resource library, which also includes the Smart Cities Readiness Guide that provides 27 best practices for launching a smart city initiative. Both Guides are available on the Smart Cities Council website for free, following a very brief registration.

Schneider Electric, which acquired Invensys in January 2014, is an Associate Partner of the Smart Cities Council.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Enhancing Driver Safety and Maintenance on Italy's A12 Motorway with Wonderware Software

Italy’s A12 motorway takes drivers from Genoa through Tuscany and then on to Rome. It's a beautiful region, and the road challenges drivers with high speeds, hilly terrain, 24 tunnels, and more than 45 miles of “B-class mountain” roads. Società Autostrada Ligure Toscana p.a., or S.A.L.T., is responsible for managing the A12. With the primary goals of improving safety, reducing energy use and lowering overall maintenance costs, S.A.L.T. uses Wonderware® software for remote monitoring and control.

“Adopting an industry grade automation solution was the first step to the successful implementation of a project characterized by a large number of controls, and mostly, by the need to guarantee uninterrupted operation.”
– Eraldo Benedetto, Automation Manager, Giordano & C. S.p.A.

Lighting & Ventilation – With 24 tunnels, lighting is critical to driver safety. Proper levels of visibility must be assured in relation to current weather conditions and time of day. Critical lighting processes are automated and controlled using Wonderware System Platform. Proper ventilation is also essential, as concentrations of exhaust gas can quickly build up in busy tunnels, reducing visibility and making air unbreathable. With Wonderware software applications, operators can determine the proper air extraction direction according to environmental conditions outside the tunnel, enabling efficient removal of noxious fumes.

Emergencies – In case of emergencies, the control room operator in charge of launching rescue operations is informed about current events through a highly intuitive alarm system. High-resolution graphics provided by Wonderware InTouch® HMI deliver clear visualization on the operator panel of any system failure or issues on the roadway such as a car crash, enabling the operator to immediately summon skilled workers or rescue squads.

Maintenance – All equipment, from lamps to fans, is monitored remotely from the control room in Viareggio, where two redundant servers store data collected via Wonderware Historian. Using a dedicated optical fiber link, information is collected by PLCs that supervise the operation of each system locally. This provides control room staff with critical information on the condition of any piece of equipment in real time.

The ability of the S.A.L.T. team to remotely control the entire system using Wonderware technology has been key to successfully managing this complex motorway system. Wonderware industrial applications have enabled the real-time management of intricate activities, especially under emergency conditions.

For more information, read the success story or visit our Transportation Industry page or Wonderware Software page on