As the Array of Things takes its final steps toward its public launch later this summer, it has locked in two new relationships that will support its research and education goals. Through an Innovation Generation grant from Motorola Solutions, the Array of Things (AoT) team will expand the high school curriculum built around the urban sensing project last year at Lane Tech High School, enabling more students to learn about technology, programming, and other important skills through the platform. Meanwhile, a new agreement with AT&T establishes the company as the wireless provider for the AoT nodes, transmitting terabytes of data to storage.

With 500 AoT nodes planned for installation in Chicago by the end of 2018, the project will need to move a lot of data. Nodes will take measurements on weather, traffic, air quality and more as often as once per minute, sending these readings via a wireless network to secure servers at Argonne for subsequent public distribution. While most of this data will be transmitted in small numerical or text packages, in aggregate the platform may generate hundreds of gigabytes of data each month once all nodes are installed. 

As stated by the AT&T news release, the company will provide their wireless network for these transmissions.

" A project of this scale requires sophisticated data management to fulfill our commitment to provide accurate and open data for the community," said project lead Charlie Catlett, director of the Urban Center for Computation and Data. "AT&T is an innovator and leader in IoT and smart cities, and we're grateful they're helping enable this ambitious endeavor."

"AT&T recognizes the critical role data plays in the value of deploying smart cities solutions, and we're pleased Array of Things trusts our network to help move their project forward," said Mike Zeto, General Manager and Executive Director, AT&T Smart Cities. "As an industry leader in smart cities, we're excited that Chicago and other cities with Array of Things sensors will be able to use this data to gain deeper insights into the needs of their city and citizens so they can ultimately make more informed decisions, drive efficiencies and deliver a higher quality living experience to their citizens."

The Motorola Solutions grant, one of 83 the company announced this week, is the second received by Array of Things. Last year, the grant funded the "Lane of Things" workshop at Lane Tech High School in Chicago, in which 150 students designed their own sensor nodes for collecting information about light, humidity, hallway traffic, and more around the school. The new grant will help the AoT team, including collaborators from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, repeat and expand the curriculum in additional schools and locations, engaging young Chicagoans in the project's goals of urban improvement and teaching students valuable science and technology skills.

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