LoRaWAN in Ulm
The voluntary Ulm TTN community and the entrepreneurial initiative initiative.ulm.digital built and still operate a LoRaWAN in Ulm based on The Things Network. A network for the Internet of Things for all interested citizens and companies, with which IoT becomes tangible for everyone. In the city of Ulm Wirnet Stations from Kerlink are used to provide the basic LoRaWAN infrastructure. 17 Wirnet stations are installed in exposed positions in the cities of Ulm and its neighbouring city Neu-Ulm. As an example one gateway was installed on the tower of the Ulm Minster which is the tallest church in the world with a spire that is 161.5 metres tall.
LoRaPark to Touch
After the infrastructure was in place in 2019, the next step envisaged was to spread word about it and make the technology and its possibilities known to and used by larger parts of Ulm’s population. This is how LoRaPark came into being. In July 2020 this show garden for sensor-based solutions was opened as a result of an innovation competition announced by the city of Ulm, which was won by citysens GmbH. The LoRaPark is situated at a part of Ulm’s historic center, called Weinhof, that is frequented by many citizens and tourists. It shows more than 15 different sensor-based applications that are helpful for daily life.
Examples are (cited from A. Buchenscheit & F. Kargl (Members IEEE): Draft paper for IEEE Communication Magazine "LoRaPark: Making LoRaWAN Sensor Networks Accessible to a Public Audience"):
- Environmental Pollution: To determine the current environmental pollution, air quality and the noise level are monitored at different locations.
- Monitor flooding of bikepaths near the river Danube: Water level sensors provide early forecasts of floods and sense the current level of the river Danube. This is interesting especially for a very popular bikeway along the river Danube which is occasionally flooded and therefor closed to bikers. A warning is then displayed on the LoRaPark screen and on a webpage.
- Container fill level: Some containers and trash cans in the LoRaPark are equipped with sensors to determine and report their current fill level.
- Ground humidity: Throughout the city, ground humidity sensors are deployed to provide a situational awareness of droughts in hot summers and to guide the city’s gardeners to places where plants require watering.
All sensors are mounted in public space in an area of around one square kilometer with information signs explaining their functions. A large information display at the entrance to the Weinhof (Sattlergasse) provides information about the sensors and their data. Further information on the complete project and data on the sensors can be found at: https://lorapark.de/ and https://lora.ulm-digital.com/.