Smart Homes, Transport + Devices

Helping drive the internet of things era

Research, knowledge, data and technology is helping drive a whole new world. Enabling smartthings and smarter ways of living, working and doing things. Here are some of the ways UAlberta's is driving and enabling tomorrow's smarter world. .

Smart transportation
Vehicles that can talk to one another and traffic lights, intersections and signs? Well it is here. Smart vehicle technology is being tested on Edmonton streets, making it the first city in Canada to see cars 'communicating with each other. Wireless communication between vehicles and infrastructure, called connected vehicle (CV) technology, is the future of transportation.

  • Changing the way the world moves: UAlberta researchers are developing ways to integrate CV technology with road infrastructure to optimize traffic networks. Their work will help us better understand smart transportation systems, how wireless communication between vehicles and infrastructure can improve and manage road safety, traffic flow and operation, travel efficiency and shared mobility. This work will help revolutionize the way the world moves.
  • Talking vehicles: With CV technology, vehicles can 'talk' to one another and roadside infrastructure in real time-sharing information such as location, speed, following distance, poor weather, adverse road conditions. In so doing, this technology will enable vehicle efficiency, greater safety and improve congestion. Increased efficiency would reduce fuel use and therefore reduce greenhouse gas emissions. For example, an energy-efficient intersection could optimizes how vehicles move through it. Avoiding unnecessary acceleration or braking which then reduces fuel and therefore emissions.
  • Canada's 1st connected vehicle test bed: UAlberta's Centre for Smart Transportation is a research and teaching ground focused on improving multi-modal transportation mobility, safety and sustainability. The Centre's ACTIVE-AURORA research initiative is Canada's first connected vehicle test-bed network. The data-driven test bed is a partnership between the university, the federal, provincial and City of Edmonton governments, the University of British Columbia and industry. An agreement has also been signed to bring the technology to China, an illustration of how UAlberta research is being used globally."

Smart building: Revolutionizing Construction
Canada's residential and commercial construction industry needs to change. It's estimated that 25% of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions are related to building design and construction, and the industry generates vast amounts of material waste. Our researchers are working with industry to revolutionize how North America builds, by modernizing and industrializing the construction industry--by moving onsite activities & workers to offsite high-tech factories.

Building is automated, prefabricated/modular, regulated & tightly scheduled in a climate-controlled environment for faster, more efficient, better quality construction, better worker safety & health, less cost, virtually no material waste, far less environmental impact. We are also using AI-based software to harness the expertise of a veteran construction supervisor for better construction planning tools, and developing construction engineering support tools for increased efficiency and less waste.

Smart condo
A research and teaching space, the Smart Condo™ enables the study if aging in place, train health sciences professionals, and examine technologies to deliver current and future health care services. Oue researchers and students examine new ways and technologies to best meet the needs of various groups, including older adults with cognitive impairment individuals with certain chronic conditions. The team is also developing a software to help assess clinically relevant information and improve the health management of patients living at home.

The Condo is one of Canada's most advanced examples of remote monitoring to enable aging in place. It includes novel and off-the-shelf sensors, avatars to represent participants whose location and activities are being monitored, and advanced algorithms to identify 'adverse' events. This facility can simulate home visits allowing healthcare professionals to better understand understand assisted living devices (e.g.,wheelchairs, walkers). Intelligent technology, e.g., wireless sensors for remote monitoring, can help improve livability and quality of life for chronically ill patients and reduce their hospital dependence.