In this third installment of our ArcGIS Indoors Blog series, we would like to cover two topics as we delve deeper into implementing IoT infused Indoors applications across two projects. In the latter part of the blog we will provide updates on our work at the Cyberpark Office Building with regards to real-time sensor integration and automated task management, but first we would like to introduce our newest ArcGIS Indoors implementation at the Atlas University campus.
Atlas University is a recently established university defined primarily by its expansive medical program and supporting engineering departments. It is situated on a campus covering 75,000 meter squares of floor space in a single structure. Constructed by fusing three buildings, this structure posed unique architectural and construction challenges and generated some unique spaces such as a refreshing terrace that bridge the two buildings and a sprawling laboratory floor which spans across the whole campus.
While creating a digital twin of this facility, we discovered that the quality of the original CAD data makes an enormous difference when carrying structures into ArcGIS Indoors. Unintuitive layers, complex object types and unnecessary groupings can all make the migration mapping task difficult. The cleanup of the CAD files, coupled with the touch up required after the facility was recreated in ArcGIS Indoors required weeks of work. In fact, for applications that do not require high fidelity (marking tasks in rooms, routing etc.) recreating the floorplans from scratch could turn out to be a faster alternative.
These are certainly challenges that can be overcome but must be factored into any project that requires starting from CAD data. For this specific case, our previous experiences with ArcGIS Indoors were especially useful in creating the digital twin of Atlas University. We found that the resulting model is a great demonstration of how a well-defined real-life facility can have an impact on the digital world, not only does it draw great interest from potential customers, but we also find ourselves fiddling around with it quite often. We look forward to implementing a variety of IoT hardware and applications which not only cover campus related requirements but also touch on medical projects through the variety of medical labs situated at the university. Stay tuned for updates on this project.
Going back to our work in the Cyberpark office building, we were able to link sensor-based input with user defined workflows to create automated tasks which in turn were published onto the Geoevent server. In practical terms this allows us to respond to IoT readings such as the weight of recyclables that need collecting or low levels of paper at the printer station through automated rules. In fact, we took this one step further by querying the closest person with the proper role to respond to a task. ArcGIS Indoors handled this query through its floor aware maps and route calculation capability. We are planning to leverage such use cases in production facilities to generate implementations that go beyond exciting tech demos to “must-have optimizations” that impact the bottom line directly.
The ability to create automated tasks such as sorting recyclables or tracking assets enhances the bond between the digital twin and the real inhabitants of this office structure. This approach not only solves real world problems, but it also opens this digital twin to multiple users giving them periodic reasons to visit the ArcGIS Indoors common operating picture, with each visit stirring up innovative ideas for further implementations.
Over the next few weeks, we are planning to set up a reservation layer and automate several steps with the use of IoT devices. Looking forward to your questions and feedback on how IoT and ArcGIS Indoors can be combined to generate value in this budding field.