The Array of Things (AoT) is a network of interactive, modular sensor boxes around Chicago collecting real-time data on the city’s environment, infrastructure, and activity for research and public use.
Sensors in the first prototype units are aimed primarily at understanding atmosphere, air quality, and environmental factors: temperature, humidity, light, carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and vibration. Additional environmental sensors including Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), Ozone (O3), Carbon Dioxide (CO2), Sulfur Oxides, and Particulate Matter are being evaluated for the first prototypes as well. Precipitation and wind measurements will be added later.
Three sensors are affected by human activity. A sound sensor will collect data on ambient volume -- the level of noise at the node. An infrared camera, pointed at nearby sidewalk and roads, collects surface temperature information. A wireless network can count the number of Bluetooth- or WiFi-enabled devices in the vicinity of the node, as a proxy for pedestrian traffic. None of these sensors will collect or record any personal or identifying information.