Smart cities of the future are fueled by IoT applications and predictive analytics. At the helm of this technology are smart sensors.

Adding a sensor to a waste bin or container creates a “smart bin,” capable of collecting data and wirelessly transmitting it to a cloud-based server where waste management authorities and city officials can use this data to make smarter waste management decisions.

The sensors monitor fill-levels or the amount level of waste gathered in the bin, and notify collectors when it is time for pickup. This is transformative for an industry that struggles with when to collect, not knowing if the bins are full or empty.  It not only minimizes unnecessary pickups but also prevents unsightly overflow. The sensors optimize waste management processes and they also help to lower road congestion, curb CO2 emissions, and ultimately, reduce overall collection costs.

Royal Borough of Greenwich

This south east London borough has installed 18 solar-powered IoT bins to increase the efficiency of waste collection services. The bins have been installed in nine busy high street locations across the borough and will replace the existing double chamber bins used in those locations. The bins are being deployed in pairs with one bin designated for general waste and the other bin labeled for recycling wastes.

London recently topped a list of the world’s smartest cities in a study released by the Eden Strategy Institute.

Kingston upon Hull

The city in the north east of England has partnered with Connexin to install smart bins. In the coming weeks, Connexin will install 30 smart waste sensors inside 15 public waste bins in parks, public spaces, and high streets across Hull.

According to an article in Government Europa, Hull City Councilor, Anita Harrison, stated: “Tackling waste issues is a top priority… and we are always keen to explore ways in which we can make our services much more effective. Smart city technologies are just one way in which we can provide an improved service for our city, and achieve our aim to create a litter-free environment that residents are proud to live in.”