Hamburg, Germany. The German startup Breeze Technologies has launched one of the world’s densest air quality monitoring networks in the city of Hamburg. The company develops lower-cost air quality sensors and cloud software to visualize and analyze environmental data in real-time. With this project, Breeze Technologies aims to analyze and understand the connection between traffic flow and congestion, and urban air quality levels. Collected air quality data is publicly available. The project is supported by Microsoft’s “AI for Earth” program.
“We are launching the probably densest air quality monitoring network in the world,” said Robert Heinecke, Co-Founder and CEO at Breeze Technologies. 35 sensors are streaming continuous real-time air quality data from an area of only 14.2 km2 to a central cloud platform. Because of its density, the network is even able to detect differences in air quality levels between individual streets. As a comparison: The official air quality monitoring network of the city of Hamburg consists of 15 measurement stations for a total area of 755.22 km2, with many of these stations only measuring one or two air quality parameters.
The sensors of Breeze Technologies are much smaller and more affordable than existing measurement technology. They continuously collect all relevant parameters of urban air quality. These include nitrogen oxides, ozone, particulate matter and carbon monoxide. Because the data is brought together in the cloud and calibrated with artificial intelligence-based technology, measurement quality reaches that of the existing public measurement grids. Heinecke explains: “We want to enable smaller cities with limited budget and experience to start collecting their own air quality data. Until now, this was just not feasible because of the associated cost of measurement infrastructure and because of the scientific complexity. Larger cities can use our solution to implement much denser air quality monitoring networks than before.” With Breeze Technologies’ Environmental Intelligence Cloud, the collected data can be further analyzed to generate insights for urban planning processes, to trigger real-time clean air actions or to manage traffic routing based on current air quality levels. The data is also available to the public through a free online citizen portal. Breeze Technologies’ Environmental Intelligence Cloud runs on Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform.
“With our AI for Earth initiative we support organizations that address the most pressing problems of our time. It is important to us that our technology, but also our resources and expertise are used for a more sustainable world. With Breeze Technologies we support a young company that shows by example how cloud-based data analysis leads to actionable recommendations to improve urban air quality. A very relevant topic for citizens and municipalities,” said Astrid Aupperle, Head of Philanthropies at Microsoft Germany.
Breeze Technologies is a technology leader for air quality sensors, data and analytics software. The company leverages the internet of things and artificial intelligence to help cities and businesses create better clean air action plans and a more liveable environment. Breeze Technologies was founded in 2015 and has been recognised as one of the most promising European startups in the European Parliament. The startup’s founders Robert Heinecke and Sascha Kuntze have been listed as Forbes 30 Under 30.
Microsoft AI for Earth: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/ai/ai-for-earth