A Smart City is an urban environment able to actively improve life quality. Smart City can facilitate life and satisfy the needs of people, companies and organizations, thanks also to the widespread and innovative use of TIC, especially concerning communications, mobility, environment and energetic efficiency.
Thanks to the employment of innovative radio technologies, it is now possible to design and produce very small wireless sensors which can be either wearable or included in city infrastructure with negligible impact. These sensors can measure several parameters and send data readings remotely; alarm functions are also available on each sensor and can be remotely transmitted as well.
By installing data collectors (Gateways), within a Smart City it is possible to collect data from all sensors belonging to a well-defined sensor network and manage them remotely.
Another feature of this product is versatility, thus allowing gateways and sensors to be installed in several environments for many different applications.
The parking meter system belongs to the set of systems and infrastructures composing a Smart City.
The Smart Parking Lot System has the scope to monitor the transitions of parking places (vacant/occupied) by means of a magnetometer sensor. The presence of a vehicle on a certain parking place affects the magnetic field: the sensor located on that place (installed either below ground or on the surface) detects the magnetic field variation and transmits the information via radio interface at 169MHz to the parking lot gateway.
The communication between gateway and sensors is bi-directional.
The Genova installation also includes an app for smartphone or tablet. The app visualizes a map of the area in which the system is installed (e.g. city district, public/private parking lot), displaying in user-friendly format the quantity of free parking places and their locations on the map. Once the desired place is selected, the app guides the user to the destination. The app has also the possibility to check parking availability in real time, notify the user in case the chosen place has been occupied and, in case, assist him/her in making a new selection and guide the user to the new destination.
The in-ground sensor is installed under road surface and can be used to monitor either a parking place or vehicle transit in a certain zone.
Transmission range between sensors and gateway can be quite long (typically 100-150m).
The sensor has been developed entirely by Ste Industries. Transmission frequency is 169MHz, with narrow channel bandwidth (12.5kHz).
169MHz frequency band is particularly suitable because it guarantees long transmission range, good permeability and high reliability even in the most critical urban environments.
Two different versions of parking sensors are available:
The surface version is easier to install and more suitable for indoor or private parking lots, while the in-ground version is a better solution for long duration installations, for example new parking lots being built by municipalities, private companies, public places, etc.
From RF point of view, both sensors are equipped with a 169MHz radio with narrowband signal (also with Ste Industries proprietary technology), which allows very high transmission power and very low power consumption. Both sensors are battery-powered: typical battery life is more than 10 years for the in-ground embedded sensor and 5 years for the surface sensor.
The FW has been especially developed to self-calibrate the sensor keeping into account the thermal drift, thus enabling a smart management of the magnetometer.