Update from the hackAIR team

Things are moving in the background: the different parts of the hackAIR platform are slowly taking shape, and we’re busy planning for pilots and user engagement. What is happening right now in Thessaloniki, Oslo, Amsterdam, Berlin, Athens and Brussels?

Eleftherios Spyromitros-Xioufis (CERTH) 

“We are working on the image analysis module. We are already processing more than 10.000 images daily – efficiency is a big topic at the moment. We have also started displaying them on a map to see how the data is distributed geographically.”

 

Ilias Stavrakas (TEI)

“We have completed the communication interfaces for the hackAIR open hardware sensors. Our next step is to make the sensor more user friendly and collect user feedback. We’re also still working on the interface with the smartphone app.”

 

Ioulia Anastasiadou (DRAXIS)

“We are currently developing and testing the main features of the hackAIR mobile app using the new UI designs. Once this is complete, the same features will be implemented for the web – so that the two of them are in line. At the same time we are integrating the different parts of the system (sensors, fusion, image analysis).”

 

Paulien Coppens (VUB)

“We are further exploring the topics of citizens’ engagement and behavioral change related to air quality. We are now creating specific engagement strategies for hackAIR, for which a literature review on engaging citizens for citizen science has already been done. Next step: conducting expert interviews to learn from other experiences in the field.”

 

Philipp Schneider (NILU)

“We are working on statistical methods for combining the observations made by the hackAIR users with other data sources such as those from air pollution models. By doing so, we will be able to offer the hackAIR community spatial information about air pollution, even at locations where no recent measurements are available. The core mapping algorithm has already been developed and we are currently working primarily on the communication interface with our observation database and on testing the method with the first incoming real data.”

 

Inge Jansen (ON:SUBJECT)

“In the communications team, we are preparing for the launch of the hackAIR platform. This means a lot of internal conversations: What materials do we need? Which audiences do we address first? What is the timeline? In addition, we’re building links with stakeholders and related projects, and happily present this newsletter.”

 

Arne Fellermann (BUND)

“Air quality has been a fiercely debated topic in Germany for the first months of 2017. Many German cities, in particular the larger urban regions have problems keeping their air quality limit values. BUND is involved locally in many of the cities in question and also runs a court case against the city of Hamburg for not doing enough to clean the air. hackAIR is a great project to raise awareness and involve citizens, so we can’t wait for the pilot project to happen in Germany.

“With BUND we are currently involved in the national discussion on urban air quality. Many German cities, in particular the larger urban regions have problems keeping their air quality limit values and come under increased pressure by court cases to come up with effective plans to reduce air pollution. In February, the city of Stuttgart, Germany’s air pollution capital with its specific topographic situation and a high volume of motorized traffic in the inner city area, had announced that from 2018 onwards it would only allow the newest EURO6 cars into the inner city, prohibiting access for older cars, whenever there is a so-called “Feinstaubalarm”, and alert for exceedances of particulate matter levels. This alert was introduced in 2016 to create awareness and trigger emergency responses. Two other cities, Düsseldorf and Munich, recently had court rulings requiring them to act within a short time-frame to implement effective measures, including bans of dirty cars. These court orders mean that Germany might see more drastic bans for especially Diesel vehicles. BUND is involved locally in many of the cities in question and also runs a court case against the city of Hamburg for not doing enough to clean the air.”

 

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