Internet of things to light up Mayo town of Crossmolina

16 Jun 2016

Crossmolina, perched at the northern tip of Lough Conn on Ireland's western coast, is about to be lit up by the internet of things

US smart energy player Silver Springs Networks has commenced the rollout of an internet of things (IoT) smart city and energy-efficiency platform in Crossmolina in Mayo in the west of Ireland.

Silver Spring Networks has deployed an IoT network canopy for Mayo County Council for smart street lighting, and a residential energy-efficiency project for the council, with the project being funded in part by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI).

The canopy uses Silver Spring’s proprietary Starfish IoT network technology, which has been used to manage more than 23.6m devices across cities like Bristol, Copenhagen, Glasgow, London, Chicago, San Jose and Kolkata in India.

‘The projects in the west of Ireland prove that the convergence of grids and cities is real and, moreover, that open IoT networks can give Ireland an opportunity to lay the foundation for long-term energy-efficiency, sustainability and infrastructure modernisation initiatives’

Future Human

The move comes just days after it emerged that VT Networks has deployed a countrywide Sigfox IoT network across Ireland.

“This technology enhances Mayo County Council objectives of reducing energy consumption, reducing CO2 emissions and reducing cost, but more importantly, it increases the ability of the community to interact with and understand their energy use,” explained Peter McLoughlin, executive engineer, Mayo County Council.

Smart grid strikes the west

Under an agreement with Electric Skyline Ltd, a local outdoor lighting specialist, and with existing Silver Spring ecosystem partners EDMI and SELC Ireland Limited, Mayo County Council is leveraging Silver Spring’s open IEEE 802.15.4g wireless interoperability standard (Wi-SUN) technology and Streetlight Vision control software-as-a-service (SaaS) to connect and manage street lights across Crossmolina.

The smart street lights and controls aim to help the county better manage its assets, increase energy efficiency and improve public safety.

Mayo County Council and SEAI are leveraging the Silver Spring wireless IoT network and connected EDMI smart meters to offer Crossmolina residents near real-time insights, recommendations and bill projections for their electric and gas consumption through a web-based and mobile-optimised customer portal.

“People are becoming more aware of the energy used in their homes and communities and how they can improve their energy efficiency,” explained Declan Meally, head of emerging sectors at SEAI.

“It’s great to see the emergence of new smart technologies, which help to improve efficiency by empowering the energy user with detailed information about their usage patterns and providing more intelligent systems with greater controls. The project in Mayo will provide invaluable insights into how we can change when and where we use energy in our homes and around our communities based on more informed and time-specific data.”

The council can also leverage the network foundation in place to deploy future smart city applications, such as smart traffic controls, smart parking management, smart water, gas and electricity networks and electric vehicle chargers, among others.

“Ireland has reached a defining moment for its infrastructure modernisation initiatives,” said Eric Dresselhuys, EVP of Global Development, Silver Spring Networks.

“We encourage energy and city leaders in Ireland to call on examples of our proven, reliable, secure and scalable technology that has been demonstrated in Crossmolina, as well as on five continents around the world, in order to kickstart their own programmes.

“The projects in the west of Ireland prove that the convergence of grids and cities is real, and moreover, that open IoT networks can give Ireland an opportunity to lay the foundation for long-term energy efficiency, sustainability and infrastructure modernisation initiatives that are driven by multiple stakeholders on a single network service.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years