There has been one problem that has been around as long as the history of the entire humanity: waste management. Even though the type of waste may have changed, the problem still persists today and has grown on an exponential scale. Currently, New York City produces about 14 million tons of trash per year. It’s no wonder the Concrete Jungle tends to receive a bad reputation from other cities around the world.
With the introduction of garbage collection and garbage trucks, New York City has been tackling the rather stinky problem on its streets. However, the traditional system of set routes of garbage trucks at set times on routine is what drives down the quality of urban life. Every morning, New Yorkers are rudely wakened with the sound of garbage trucks. In an early morning commute, frustration rises as rows of cars are stuck behind a garbage truck. Yet, in the evening, the garbage bins on the street seem to be teeming to the brim with waste. So what’s the solution?
Through collaboration with Citisense, MXC is putting smart sensors on garbage bins around New York City. The sensor utilizes ultrasound to measure the fill level of each garbage bin, which is transmitted to waste management companies through the MXProtocol that operates on LPWAN. Each sensor can be pre-set to send the alert when the bins are 80% full, ensuring that no overflow of waste onto the streets. That means garbage collection when it’s needed, rather than when it’s scheduled. Hence, resources can be better allocated to target areas with heavy foot traffic, at ideal times to avoid commuting traffic. No more foul-smelling alarms in the morning, and no more frustration on the road. That’s greener and smarter New York City.
A demand-based system of garbage collection breaks away from the traditional schedule-based system, which often has been the subject of discrimination. Certain areas of New York City lack frequent garbage collection, while other areas experience a large abundance of it. Hence, Smart City New York – driven by MXC and Citiesense – is now fairer and inclusive. Citizens can also take part in providing the necessary infrastructure for MXProtocol. They can deploy their own LPWAN Gateways around the city, providing essential connection points for MXProtocol to run. Waste Management businesses can also benefit from MXProtocol. As they collect almost-full garbage bins, they also passively collect data about waste levels in certain areas. This precious data can be sold on an open data market to other companies or institutions that require such data – ensuring authentic field data at a fraction of the current price, and an additional source of income for the businesses that collected the data.