With a rampant rise in urbanization, statistics suggest that upwards of 50% of today’s world population is urban, while more than two-thirds is projected to inhabit cities by 2050. Presently, we are in an era of remarkable, near-exponential increase in-
- Population Density in the world's fastest-growing cities
- Disposable Income of the urban populace
This rings alarm-bells for urban Governments in a multitude of ways, including-
- More number of people inhabiting cities inevitably leads to greater number of vehicles plying urban roads
- Increasing spending power encourages citizens to privately own more than one vehicle and use them more often than needed, availing public transport less and less
The resultant increase in traffic is bound to cause more air and noise pollution, impairing the healthiness of urban living.
This submission aims to circumvent the aforementioned problem with an IoT-enabled e-Governance solution. D-Airoise is envisioned to be a part of the government's portfolio of digital services that will monitor the air and noise pollution caused by vehicles privately owned by the urban residents. It will allow the Government to penalize car-owners if pollution caused by their vehicles is found to be beyond tolerance limits in a specified time window (here, weekly).
Simply stated, D-Airoise will comprise of a well-structured network of D-Surveil Nodes, grouped into clusters. Each cluster will intelligently pass an independent judgement on each car that has traversed through the area. Every Sunday, a weekly consensus will be arrived at, where-in the judgements of all clusters will be consolidated to label a vehicle as "Liable" or "Not Liable" to penalty, based on the degree of air/ noise pollution it has caused over the past week.
The following steps outline how D-Airoise is set to work. A detailed illustration is provided in Figure 1.1.
- An IoT sensing system will be fitted into each car's exhaust to collect air quality data. Every car will have a unique ID through RFID technology, in addition to its unique Vehicle Registration Number.
- Each traffic signal in the city will serve as a D-Surveil Node (processing unit). These units receive data such as CO%, Hydrocarbons (PPM) etc, and decide whether a particular vehicle has caused air pollution (YES/ NO) based on whether the values have exceeded prescribed emission levels.
- Further, each D-Surveil Node will have a zone attribute that can be used to identify whether the node is located in the vicinity of a school or hospital, where honking of cars is prohibited. During the decision-making process at the nodes, this factor will be taken into consideration for determining noise pollution violation (YES/ NO).
- The D-Surveil Nodes will be organized into clusters, based on proximity. The nodes will be interconnected and will communicate with every other node through an improved LEACH protocol. This will minimise energy consumption at the nodes.
- Each cluster head will collect data from every D-Surveil Node in its cluster and decide whether a particular vehicle has violated pollution (air/ noise) standards. Since the clusters are formed on the basis of distance, if a car passes through two nodes that are close to each other, the violation is not double-counted, the values are combined to produce a single YES/ NO in the database.
- Weekly batch processes will then churn the data available with all the cluster heads to arrive at a consensus, consolidating the independent judgements. The number of violations committed by the vehicle will be counted. If the Pollution Violation Count is found to be greater than five (in the past week), an alert mail will be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle to penalize him/ her for causing air/ noise pollution.
- The Pollution Violation Count will be reset only after the vehicle-owner pays the penalty and declares that he/ she has taken requisite measures to reduce pollution caused by the vehicle.
Periodically, the data collected will be moved to history tables and will be purged from the main database, to keep the performance of D-Airoise at optimal levels. The entire system will be hosted on the Cloud with a pay-per-use cost of ownership borne by the Government.
Novelty & Impact on Healthy Urban Living
D-Airoise is a novel idea to potentially enhance the health quotient of urban living by improving Air Quality, Data Quality and Sound Quality, as follows-
- The primary challenge underlying pollution-control is raising awareness and inducing responsible behavior on the part of citizens. To this end, a surveillance system controlled directly by the Government to penalize vehicle-owners can be of great help.
- With a weekly window of monitoring, the accuracy of pin-pointing cars that are posing threats of air/ noise pollution will increase manifold.
- Since the only way for citizens to get their Pollution Violation Count reset to 0 is by paying the penalty and taking measures to reduce pollution caused by their vehicles, the enforcement of pollution control measures at an individual level will be stronger.
- The e-Governance portal will also provide a one-stop easy user interface for citizens to keep a tab on their vehicles' health.