How to Make Proper Use of 1 Trillion Sensors

Feb 17, 2014
Tsuneyuki Miyake, Nikkei Electronics
Bumpei Magori, project lecturer for the University of Tokyo
Bumpei Magori, project lecturer for the University of Tokyo
[Click to enlarge image]

The number of sensors used in our society is expected to grow rapidly. Some people consider that more than one trillion sensors, which is 100 times larger than the number of sensors currently used in a year, will be used every year in the future. And there are global efforts to realize "Trillion Sensor Universe" at an early date.

Janusz Bryzek, chair of TSensors Summit LLC, who advocates Trillion Sensor Universe, expects that 45 trillion sensors will be used in 2033 (For more information, click "abstract" of his lecture on the website of Trillion Sensors Summit Japan 2014).

Even though there is a potential demand for a huge number of sensors, the diffusion of sensors will reach its limit if sensors themselves do not change, said Bumpei Magori, project lecturer, the Institute of Industrial Science, the University of Tokyo.

Magori pointed this out because he already sees problems in using various sensors in the field of architecture. He is a researcher in the field of architecture and has designed buildings for a major construction company. Based on such experience, he is afraid that human errors will occur at the time of installing sensors and make it impossible to manage a large number of sensors.

Currently, if sensors are installed in 1,000 locations in a building, residence or commercial facility, 3% of them are outputting incorrect information due to mistakes made at the time of installation, Magori said. In other words, even if high-accuracy sensors are deployed, they may not be fully used.

Intelligent sensors will gain importance

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