Amazon Web Services (AWS) and BMW have announced a strategic collaboration that will see the companies develop innovative cloud technologies together to harness the data potential of future vehicle generations to maximum effect. The two companies are also cooperating to develop commercial off-the-shelf cloud solutions for securely managing vehicle data. The collaboration marks a continuation of the two companies' work together in the area of connected vehicles, which started in 2015. As in all previous collaborations, the BMW Group retains full and exclusive control of data and complies with the data protection regulations applicable in the respective markets.
du, from Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (EITC), and Masdar City, a global leader in sustainable innovation and development, have partnered to build a 5G Centre of Excellence (CoE) in Masdar City, Abu Dhabi.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed during GITEX GLOBAL 2022, where du presented innovative showcases under the theme "Powering Governments, Shaping The Emirates Reality."
Under the arrangement, du will work with Masdar City, Abu Dhabi’s only planned and approved R&D cluster, to implement a Smart City Platform, which combines physical infrastructure, open and shared data, and smart applications to deliver unprecedented value. The project will also oversee the development of an advanced command and control center along with the CoE to showcase exponential technologies.
The plan will enable operational efficiencies for Masdar City management and improve the daily quality of life for residents and tourists. The partnership underscores du’s holistic approach to innovation in line with the UAE’s sustainability agenda and the Net Zero by 2050 strategic initiative.
Commenting on the development, Fahad Al Hassawi, chief executive officer at du, said, “Reinventing tomorrow is all about rethinking and rebuilding operating models for businesses and coming together to establish agile, innovative platforms to support our vision. We are excited to partner with Masdar to establish a 5G Centre of Excellence to present exponential technologies and become part of the equation to deliver a strong, connected future through the Smart City project.”
The Smart City vision encompasses an integrated approach to champion disruption with scalable and phased implementation and flexible frameworks and standards to achieve cost efficiency and agility. du will leverage world-class sustainable Internet of Things (IoT) technology to deliver a complete view on the sustainability of Masdar City’s assets while facilitating processes such as asset benchmarking, performance and predictive analytics, along with insights on digital operations. The partnership will facilitate seamless city operations, leading to optimized and improved services.
Ahmed Baghoum, executive director, Masdar City, said, “We are delighted to welcome du to develop a 5G Centre of Excellence in Masdar City. The CoE will bring du, partner organisations and educational institutions together to create real-world 5G applications. These applications will be tested at Masdar City, which is Abu Dhabi’s only planned and approved R&D cluster with a focus on innovative technologies, and further enhance its reputation as a Smart City. After proof of concept at Masdar City, these applications will be rolled out commercially across the UAE and beyond.”
In addition to the Smart City, the CoE will deliver transformative and disruptive technological innovations with a key focus on environmental, social and governance factors. Through substantiating and implementing next-generation technologies, du and Masdar will embrace advanced innovation to position Masdar City as the first 5G-enabled sustainable city in the world and create an enhanced future for the UAE.
Technology has dug its roots deep into the foundations of the sustainable existence of both modern enterprises and individuals. It has evolved to be indispensable for most of us by essentially catapulting our customer experience radically in various transactions. One current example can be seen in the growing trend of using cashless payments made across borders to buy real estate virtually. Gone are the days when one had to board a plane and physically reach a location to buy property. We’ve charted a new world, and such experiences will only evolve further with emerging technologies entering our digital mainstream.
Decades of human activity in the natural environment have given birth to the concept of “built environment”. The term incorporates almost everything constructed by humans using brick, mortar and steel other than the natural landscapes. As such, the buildings, public parks and the infrastructure that supports human activity, including transportation networks, utilities networks, flood defenses, telecommunications and so on, would all fall under the purview of the “built environment”.
As the population grows, the size of the built environment is also bound to grow. By 2050, two out of every three people are likely to be living in cities or other urban centers, according to the United Nations. The international organization’s findings also estimate that by 2030, the world could have 43 so-called megacities, most of them in developing countries.
Cities already consume 75% of the world’s natural resources. The environmental impact of urban areas is has been palpable, and as they grow, the case for focusing on sustainability and reducing carbon emissions has become ever stronger.
How Has It Impacted Climate?
The 2020 Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction, from the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GlobalABC), found that while global building energy consumption remained steady year on year, energy-related CO2 emissions increased to 9.95 GtCO2 in 2019. The increase was attributable to the use of fossil fuels with higher carbon content for electricity generation. Furthermore, adding emissions from the building construction industry on this accounted for 38% of total global energy-related CO2 emissions.
To achieve net-zero carbon emission by 2050 to limit global warming to 1.5°C, the International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that by 2030, direct building CO2 emissions need to fall by 50% and indirect building sector emissions by 60%. This equates to building sector emissions falling by around 6% per year until 2030, close to the 7% decrease in 2020 global energy sector CO2 emissions due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Achieving net-zero carbon buildings at a substantial level will require changes to every building element, including materials, thermal envelopes, passive heating and cooling design, active heating and cooling (HVAC), appliances, lighting and electricity generation.
CRTKL, a global cultural agency specializing in architecture, planning and design, introduced an
open-source platform, CLIMATESCOUT, which helps users design buildings that uniquely respond to a site by providing climate-specific design advice at the building scale. It connects architectural responses and expressions with the climate in real-time and aids in the ability to interact through a diagram between sustainable design strategies and climate conditions. CLIMATESCOUT pairs the Köppen-Geiger climate classification and building design strategies from Architecture 2030’s Palette – a database of sustainable data strategies. The web-based application uses a combination of images and data to enable the visualization of low carbon, regenerative, resilient and adaptive buildings.
Another technology gaining recognition in the sector is the digital twin technology – a virtual replica of a physical object that mirrors accurate functionality details with the use of sensors attached to the object. The digital twin can process the nuances of the construction design, including the components and materials used. The data is then relayed to a processing system and applied to the digital copy. Digital twins are also being used to monitor the quality of air within a building, maintain optimum temperature, schedule maintenance and predict the flow of inhabitants to reduce the risk of potential overcrowding.
Also, a regular feature in building development is Artificial Intelligence (AI) supported by advanced sensing and controls, systems integration, data analytics and energy optimization that are collectively improving energy efficiency and demand flexibility in buildings. Integrating these digital capabilities in “smart” equipment and appliances can provide additional benefits including improved reliability and remote management in addition to energy and emissions reductions. Additionally, such technologies are also used to improve the safety of buildings. The data harnessed from the buildings isbeing analyzed to predict emergencies such as natural disasters and fires so that engineers can plan the most effective emergency exit design.
Rooting for Green Buildings
Policies that introduce minimum efficiency performance standards and energy-consumption labeling on appliances and equipment have led to reduced power consumption, lower carbon emissions and cost savings for consumers, according to an analysis published by the IEA and the 4E Technology Collaboration Programme (4E TCP).
It further states that in countries with long-running policies, appliances are now typically consuming 30% less energy than they would have done otherwise. A case in point can be the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) who have been successfully implementing intelligent technology for energy-efficient utility operations which are benefitting both the environment and the end-users of their services.
Globally, green building best practices are being applied from the design through the construction stages, including retrofitting residential as well as commercial buildings. The goal of improving the efficiency of existing buildings and reducing the carbon footprint of the built environment should be a game-changing move. And digital technology can play a vital role in this trajectory.
With the BMW iX, the BMW Group is the first premium manufacturer to integrate the 5G mobile radio standard with real ‘Dual-SIM-Dual-Active’ services into a globally available production vehicle. In collaboration with both Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone, mobility is entering the 5G era with benefits such as high bandwidth, low latency, and improved telephone quality.