Buffalo street lights and parking spots could become "smart" with new wireless network

Posted at 11:08 AM, Aug 22, 2017

Buffalo now has a wireless network for the internet of things. This means everyday physical objects can be connected to the internet. Things like street lights and parking spots could become "smart" like our cell phones. 

The partnership between Sigfox, a global internet of things (IOT) service provider, and UB's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences has made Buffalo a high-tech hotbed. 

The wireless network will employ a device-to-cloud communication to put objects online. The low-power wide-area (LPWA)  wireless technology will lower the cost to connect to the Internet.

The LPWA network will be able to track whether a parking spot is open or taken, if a public recycling bin is empty or full, or whether a door is open or closed. 

UB Electrical Engineering Professor Josep Jornet said, "It's really cutting-edge technology for UB researchers to conduct groundbreaking experiments that could lead to great societal benefits."

UB is working with the City of Buffalo to explore how students can apply this technology to improve public services.