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Wednesday, 5.10.2022
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Leoben will use Greehill’s AI-based smart city solution to create a digital twin of 3,000 trees to monitor the population online and help to tackle climate change.

The Austrian city of Leoben in the state of Styrian is using digital twin smart city technology to tackle climate change through more effective urban tree management.

The city is creating a twin of some 3,000 trees, which will enable it to manage the population online and monitor and predict ecological developments using computer simulations.

Digital tree inventory

The tree inventory and platform for inspection and analysis are being provided by tech start-up Greehill, which was founded in 2017 by Gabor Goertz and Gyula Fekete as a research and development project to digitally transform urban forest management.

“Leoben joins a number of prominent cities with its digital tree inventory. The Greehill database and the comprehensive know-how behind it help us to analyse and manage the city’s tree population,” said Leoben mayor Kurt Wallner.

The laser scanner will be driven through the streets of Leoben to capture a point cloud (a set of data points) of the city using lidar technology. Panoramic images will also be taken in the same way that Google does for Street View but with three times the resolution.

“Greehill feeds this information into an advanced machine-learning engine and creates a digital twin of each tree,” explained Sven König, Greehill regional director, who will lead the project through the first data collection stage. “We supplement our tree inventory with satellite data, and develop a strategy to improve their health, assess safety levels, and cut air pollution or temperature in Leoben.”

With the help of drones, mobile laser scanners and highly sensitive cameras, every tree and its immediate surroundings can be analysed directly from the office. The computerised 3D model can be used to perform health and safety checks, custom measurements, or filter trees based on important criteria.

The city can also assess climate-related and ecologically relevant data, such as the amount of carbon dioxide stored by each tree. In this way, resource-saving, evidence-based decisions can be made to maintain a safe and healthy tree population and support resilient “green lungs” in urban areas, for future generations.

“We are not merely a mapping company – we are out to save the world,” said CEO and co-founder of Greehill Gabor Goertz. “With this data Leoben can increase its sustainability, biodiversity, and climate resilience.”

Greehill’s technology is used by a number of cities around the world, including Singapore. The digital twin platform enables arborists from National Parks Board of Singapore to conduct first-level inspections remotely, so they can spend more time on site proactively caring for their trees.

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Quelle/Source: SmartCitiesWorld, 25.07.2022

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