Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:

  • Cisco has invested $1 million in a smart city pilot program in Adelaide, Australia that involves placing sensors at key intersections throughout the city.
  • If the pilot is successful, it will lay the foundation for the eventual deployment of autonomous vehicles.

A new pilot program underway in Adelaide, Australia is intended to reduce traffic congestion and lay the foundation for autonomous vehicles.

The governments of South Australia and the city of Adelaide are partnering with Cisco for the pilot, with Cisco investing $1 million in the project. The pilot uses Cisco Kinetic for Cities’ Internet of Things (IoT) platform.

SEE: IT leader’s guide to the rise of smart cities, volume 2 (Tech Pro Research)

Cisco is a major player in smart city technology, and autonomous vehicles are now a component of urban planning. At CES 2018, Cisco announced that the next-generation, hyper-connected car, featuring its new in-vehicle network, will be ready for production next year. It’s a natural extension of Cisco’s long-standing network and security technology work with cities and major companies.

The smart city technology being deployed in Adelaide will measure how long vehicles sit at a traffic light, and how many cars are in line at intersections. A dashboard will display analytics on the averages for wait times and the number of vehicles throughout the day, and how well traffic lights are operating in sequence at any specific intersection.

The pilot has two phases. The first phase began on January 29 and runs through February 3. It includes six sensors at one intersection in Adelaide. The sensors will gather information on traffic approaching the intersection, such as location and speed of vehicles, as well as the number of pedestrians. Tailored algorithms will be created with recommended traffic light interval timing to improve traffic flow.

If this phase is successful, other intersections in Adelaide will be selected to potentially test and scale the solution city-wide followed by a national rollout.

The second phase will assess if the same infrastructure can be applied to quickly and accurately determine the location and movements of autonomous vehicles, which is critical to being able to manage and control autonomous vehicles.

SEE: Tech and the future of transportation (ZDNet special report) | Download the report as a PDF (TechRepublic)

Kevin Bloch, Chief Technology Officer, Cisco Australia & New Zealand, said, “Traffic congestion in Australia’s cities is getting worse, and we need to act now before autonomous vehicles join our already busy roads.”

“We believe this technology could have a real impact on drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians in Adelaide, and other cities, because its traffic light network will be able to make real-time decisions,” Bloch said.

South Australian Science and Information Economy Minister Kyam Maher said, “We are pleased that Cisco has chosen Adelaide to develop and trial its smart city technology. It’s a vote of confidence in our growing innovation ecosystem and boosts our reputation as a global leader in adopting smart technologies and smart solutions.”

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