Singapore plants smart meters in schools

IBM awards US$100,000 grant to develop a green system that will help 20 schools in the city-state monitor and lower energy usage in year-long initiative.

IBM has partnered Singapore's Ministry of Education (MOE) to help schools in the country become more "green".

Under the collaboration, the Singapore Green Building Council (SGBC) will tap Big Blue's expertise and technologies to develop a system that tracks power usage and reduces energy and maintenance costs, IBM said Friday in a statement. The system will be implemented in 20 schools.

The vendor has provided a US$100,000 grant to the SGBC for the initiative, dubbed Project Green Insights.

IBM said in the statement that a network of smart meters will be installed in the selected schools to track energy usage patterns, with the data accessible in a dashboard view via the cloud to stakeholders including teachers and students. The collaboration will seek to reduce usage tied to lighting and air-conditioning, with the aim of lowering carbon emissions.

According to an IBM spokesperson, only one school, the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) College East, has so far been selected for the first phase of the project. Another four schools will be jointly chosen by MOE, SGBC and IBM by mid-September this year.

Phase two, which will involve the remaining 15 schools, is scheduled to kick off in December 2011. The entire pilot project is expected to last a year from now.

Project Green Insights is one of 11 projects globally to receive the IBM Centennial Grant, which includes cash and in-kind awards amounting to nearly US$1 million. Big Blue commemorated its 100th anniversary last month.