SITE: Sensing & Information Technologies for the Environment

SITE: Sensing & Information Technologies for the Environment


In collaboration with: Dr. Maider Llaguno-Munitxa (PostDoc. Princeton University), Prof. Doc. Elie Bou-Zeid (Princeton University Civil and Environmental Engineering), Prof. Scott Fisher (USC School of Cinematic Arts) 

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Big data is changing urban science. Digitalization of information and ubiquitous sensing in cities are enabling the collection of data at unprecedentedly high temporal and spatial resolutions. This is most true in regard to urban environmental data. Sensor networks, remote sensing, thermal imaging, and crowd-sourced environmental monitoring are rapidly growing the availability of urban environmental data. 
While high spatiotemporal resolution urban microclimate data are continuously becoming easier to collect, these data often fail to reach public audience. Citizens are generally only aware of the city scale mean pollutant concentration values, and fail to understand the variable environmental quality conditions present in the urban fabric. One of the main reasons for the persistence of this challenge is due to the fact that while the study of urban sensing tools and strategies have been a consistent focus of research within the environmental and earth science communities, little attention has been placed on the development of data compilation and visualization techniques for interactive exploration of environmental data for urban analysis. 
Environmental data are generally visualized as tabular data or 2D plots that generally fail to enable an experiential visualization of the microclimatic data. The ongoing research developed by the Sensing and Information Technologies for the Environment (SITE) Lab, focuses on the development of 3D immersive environmental visualization techniques to facilitate a user-centered interactive analysis and rationalization of the available urban environmental data. 
The research has been organized in three sections: The first section focuses on the acquisition of high spatiotemporal resolution urban air quality data through Mobile Urban Sensing Technologies (MUST). The second section focuses on the introduction of an on-site immersive visualization strategy by introducing an Augmented Reality mobile application called Navigating Urban Environments (NUE) app. The third section focuses on an off-site Augmented Reality interface called the Visualizing Urban Environments (VUE) app which engages the participants in the analysis and rationalization of Seoul’s historic and real-time air quality data. 

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