Digital twins help in predicting disasters and traffic accidents

Stuttgart transit
Sheila Zabeu -

June 19, 2023

Fujitsu and Hexagon’s security, infrastructure and geospatial solutions division are developing a set of digital twins applications to predict and mitigate natural disasters and traffic accidents. The initiative is part of an alliance formed in June 2022 whose goal is to create disaster-resilient cities.

The two companies are creating a forecasting model that calculates and visualizes the extent and impacts of flooding from precipitation data and performs analyses of potential damage. From this data, cities will be able to develop disaster response plans.

In the field of traffic safety, Fujitsu and Hexagon are banking on an application to identify areas where heavy traffic and road design increase the risk of accidents and then propose measures for improvement. With this, city planners can develop safer transportation networks.

In the future, the two companies will conduct field tests to propose solutions at the global level by March 2024. Use cases were presented at HxGN LIVE Global 2023, Hexagon’s digital solutions conference held in Las Vegas on June 13, 2023.

The use case associated with advanced flood forecasting coordinates and visualizes data from various areas such as transportation, energy, medicine and environment, and uses Fujitsu’s Computing as a Service (CaaS) platform with Hexagon’s geospatial application M.App Enterprise to analyze and verify disaster threats and propose preparedness measures to act in case of disasters. The solution uses a digital twin that replicates real conditions, in detail, and makes estimates of the value of damage. In addition, it presents safe evacuation routes and means of protecting infrastructure using Internet of Things (IoT) weather sensors and weather forecast services.

Visualization of disaster situations by advanced flood forecasting
Source: Fujitsu

The use case related to traffic accident reduction uses a combination of Hexagon’s M. App Enterprise geospatial visualization tool and Fujitsu’s infrastructure services to develop an application that visualizes areas with high traffic accident rates, and analyzes traffic volumes, road design, signage, and other factors to provide recommendations according to the International Road Assessment Program (iRAP).

For example, in a location where traffic volume is low but accidents occur frequently, several improvement measures, such as speed control, installation of traffic signs, and enclosure of traffic lanes by guardrails, are presented together, proposing a more cost-effective solution for urban and roadway planners.

A Hexagon fará uma parceria com a Fujitsu para fornecer a Munique uma solução SaaS para rastrear, visualizar e analisar dados de IoT de diversos provedores de mobilidade.
Source: Fujitsu

In practice, but for a different purpose

In Stuttgart, Germany, the digital twin platform will be used to visualize and analyze IoT sensor data for another purpose: to seek to improve the quality of life for the city’s 600,000 residents.

In this specific case, the solution presents an operational picture to monitor sensors that measure, for example, water quality and parking space occupancy, and thus optimize operations and enable informed decisions for the future. The digital twins platform uses M.App Enterprise and Xalt, as well as Fujitsu’s cloud infrastructure services.

“Stuttgart’s Urban Digital Twin project will provide a large volume of environmental and mobility data, relying on the help of Hexagon and Fujitsu’s IoT data analytics platform to use it in a smarter decision-making process for the good of our city,” says Jens Schumacher, head of IT at Stuttgart’s civil engineering office.

Partnership for the benefit of urban sustainability

This cooperation between Fujitsu and Hexagon started in June 2022 with the aim of accelerating the development and promotion of use cases to solve social challenges and contribute to the realization of a ‘Trusted Society’ — a sustainable and resilient place where people can live together in harmony and prosperity.

The work explores digital twin technologies and solutions from both companies, with IoT sensors, a high-performance computing infrastructure and platforms for data processing, Artificial Intelligence (AI) analytics and advanced visualization.

“Cities are playing a leading role in solving global challenges, addressing everything from the effects of climate change to reducing traffic fatalities. Our partnership with Fujitsu can help cities efficiently exploit data to solve these pressing issues and achieve sustainability and safety goals,” says Steven Cost, president of Hexagon’s safety, infrastructure and geospatial solutions division.

“Our goal at Fujitsu is to put our vision of a ‘Trusted Society’ into practice. Partnering with Hexagon will enable us to extend our reach and create more value for cities and regions around the world,” comments Yoshinami Takahashi, vice president and head of Fujitsu’s global solutions group.