Last week, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) granted $6 million in funding to establish 10 telemedicine and health care projects to six states that have areas that are currently lacking adequate care.
"[This] funding can help improve the health of rural residents who live in the south central portion of the country," says Tom Vilsack, USDA secretary. "These projects can provide care to patients currently receiving no care at all and hopefully reduce the incidence of stroke, mental illness, and other health disorders in rural regions."
On Monday, GE Energy formed an agreement with the city of Leesburg, Florida to undergo a $20 million smart grid project to modernize the city’s electric utility. The project, paid for using $10 million in federal grants from the U.S. Department of Energy, will provide 24,000 customers with smart meters starting in March of next year.
The new system is expected to save Leesburg $15 million in electric operations over the next 20 years, according to the Leesburg City Commission.
On-Ramp Wireless (San Diego, Calif., U.S.A.), a provider of networking and location tracking equipment, on Tuesday announced it has partnered with Green Life Networks (GLN), a department of Gemtek (Hsinchu, Taiwan), a provider of wireless broadband solutions, to provide a landslide sensor for local, state and federal governments.
By deploying a group of sensors on hills with landslide potential, these sensors are able to detect minute movements to identify the formation of potential landslide.
Experts in the field of machine-to-machine (M2M) communications know that billions of intelligent devices connected on networks represent enormous opportunity, but also enormous risk. Many of these experts will gather in the M2M Zone at the CeBIT 2012 trade show in Hannover, Germany to discuss digital security for embedded devices, which will be the major theme for 350,000 attendees to the world's largest ICT event.
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) on Wednesday launched a new smart grid committee to advance standardization of the Modular Communications Interface (MCI) specification. The new standard will help manufacturers, utilities, service providers and consumers as it leads to more smart grid-ready products, says CEA.
The GSMA, in partnership with Machina Research (London, England), last week announced that the growth of connected devices is booming in Asia Pacific, with the region expected to be the largest market by 2020 with over 11 billion total connected devices, and within that, almost 5.6 billion mobile connected devices, accounting for a 47% market share and far outstripping Europe (19.1%) and North America (9.4%).
GE Energy (Fairfield, Conn., U.S.A.) recently announced they were working to provide smart-grid-as-a-service to community-owned utility systems that traditionally did not invest in smart grid systems due to steep up-front costs.
The advanced water metering market, estimated at about 5.5 million global shipments in 2010, and anticipated to be roughly 10 million shipments annually in 2016, continues to increase its product share, particularly in North America, says a report by IMS Research (Wellingborough, England).
Many M2M analysts forecast that the markets for connected medical devices may not grow as quickly as deployments in areas like automotive telematics and smart grid, but the brain trust at Wi-Fi device manufacturer Lantronix (Irvine, Calif., USA) does not agree. The company has seen embedded systems for medical devices grow to 10% of its $50 million (US) top-line sales, and expects the overall market for such medical connectivity to continue to increase.
U.S. regulators are investigating the safety of batteries used to power electric vehicles after a General Motors Co. (Detroit, Mich., U.S.A.) Chevrolet Volt caught fire following a routine crash test.
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said on Friday that it has asked other manufacturers who make electric cars or who plan to do so for information on how they handle lithium-ion batteries. The request also includes recommendations for minimizing fire risk.