New Siemens smart city app connects Expo 2020 to IoT

The app is designed to digitally optimise Expo 2020 Dubai, enhancing the visitor experience and reducing energy and water use during the six-month event.


A new cloud-based app which will support Expo 2020 Dubai in becoming a blueprint for future smart cities is being developed by Siemens, and has already connected part of the site’s infrastructure to the Internet of Things.

The app is designed to digitally optimise Expo 2020 Dubai, enhancing the visitor experience and reducing energy and water use during the six-month event. Initially operating across two domains – environmental monitoring and irrigation – the app will collect, monitor, correlate and analyze data from the site, and visualize it to allow real-time monitoring and control of infrastructure from static and mobile devices.


Currently under development in close collaboration with Expo 2020 Dubai, the app is running in a test phase at the Expo Site Project Office. It will be scaled up as infrastructure is completed. In addition to environmental monitoring and irrigation, further urban domains will be added in subsequent phases including Sustainability, Electric Vehicle Charging Monitoring and other data lake use cases, incorporating multiple smart city elements into a single app. Eventually it will be connected to the full Expo ecosystem, creating the most connected Expo in history and demonstrating its ability to integrate a city’s infrastructure into the Internet of Things.

“This new digital application will support Expo 2020 Dubai in becoming the most connected world fair in history; a great step forward as we continue to explore how digitalization and IoT technologies can address urban challenges,” said Dr. Roland Busch, chief operating officer and chief technology officer, Siemens AG. “By integrating the infrastructure of the largest-ever event in the Arab world with the Internet of Things, we have the potential to inform the development of future smart cities around the world.”

Mohammed Alhashmi, chief technology officer at Expo 2020 Dubai said: “Siemens’ app is a perfect example of what we’re trying to achieve as we prepare to host Expo 2020 – providing a test bed for our partners to deploy innovation at scale and explore the potential for new technology to deliver enhanced operations and experiences, in line with our sub themes of Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability.”

The new app will grow with the Expo 2020 Dubai site, incorporating the ability to make use of machine learning and artificial intelligence to support predictions. When the app has built enough historical data from sensors, a model can be constructed for learning and predictions can be made. For example, when connected to a weather station the app can make use of historical and real-time weather and air quality data to predict the likelihood of a sandstorm, and make appropriate preparation recommendations for site infrastructure. The app can integrate data from any manufacturer’s sensors, reducing its dependence on specific sensors and gateways.

The app runs on MindSphere, Siemens’ open, cloud-based operating system for the Internet of Things, and has been fully designed and developed within the MindSphere ecosystem. At login, the app’s user interface gives a graphical visualization of the Expo’s infrastructure performance, and has been designed so that a non-technical person can understand and use the app intuitively.

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