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‘Smart campus’ waste bin initiative launched at UBC


November 8, 2017  


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Waterloo, Ont.-based eleven-X Inc. has launched its second Smart Campus initiative with the University of British Columbia aimed at real-time tracking of fill-levels of on-campus outdoor waste disposal and re-cycling bins associated with the campus parking facilities.

The pilot project is designed to improve waste collection efficiencies by providing optimized route planning and pick-up, while reducing costs by optimizing pick-up schedules and eliminating the need for emergency call-outs.

Fill-level sensors capable of determining waste and re-cycling bin fill-levels will be installed in target bins across the UBC campus parking lots, connected to the eleven-X nationwide public LoRa Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN).

The LoRaWAN Alliance defines it as a “Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) specification intended for wireless battery operated Things in a regional, national or global network. LoRaWAN targets key requirements of Internet of Things such as secure bi-directional communication, mobility and localization services.”

In the pilot, a service alert is triggered and sent to UBC Parking maintenance staff once a pre-determined bin level has been reached, indicating a bin pick-up is required. Levels are tracked in real-time, optimizing maintenance response.

The monitoring project will determine what efficiencies might be gained by implementing this technology. The trial stage will evaluate performance over a smaller, defined portion of the UBC campus’ parking facilities, capturing data related to collection, directly resulting in cost savings while improving collection efficiency.

“Improving UBC Parking’s waste and re-cycling collection service provides an overall aesthetic benefit while enabling cost-saving measures related to staff productivity and resource allocation,” said Brian Jones, the director of parking and access services at UBC. “By optimizing the number of daily pick-ups, our service level increases, the parking facilities look great and all at a reduced cost.”

eleven-X and UBC first collaborated on an Accessible Smart Parking Pilot, currently underway, which will be completed in the spring of 2018.

The project is expected to last approximately three months enabling sufficient data capture across specific target areas of UBC Parking’s waste collection process. This data will be used to evaluate possible future deployments across other areas of the UBC parking’s portfolio.