Physical Analytics (previous) - Museum

Monitoring a Museum

One of our solutions has been implemented and is currently being used at a museum. With our tools and physical analytics we can predict environmental conditions within buildings, thus helping with the optimization of microclimates for the preservation of works of art.


We implemented our environmental wireless sensor network at the museum to help preserve historic treasures and works of art. The objects of art in a museum are very sensitive to fluctuations in temperature, relative humidity, and other environmental conditions. By using our solution, we are able to collect time-stamped data using a wireless sensor network. Besides storing these data, we provide real-time visualization, modeling, and analysis.

Museum Deployment
Museum Deployment


The data collection technology is through our wireless platform Low-Power Mote Technology. We deployed around 100 sensors in several adjacent rooms at the museum. Our technology allows for a high spatio-temporal resolution monitoring of the environment. Our sensors include temperature, humidity, air flow, contamination levels, door positions, and others. All the data are fed into a software application where they are modeled to provide detailed real-time 2D and 3D temperature, humidity, and dew point gradients.

Museum Image
Museum Wireless Sensor Network

The data storage, visualization, and analytics take place within the IBM Measurement and Management Technology (MMT) solution. The MMT has the built-in capability of Statistical and Computational Fluid Dynamics modeling on demand, which is used through a user interface (the MMT Client) that allows drawing quick insights on environmental conditions.

MMT Client GUI
View of the Deployment in the MMT Client

Analysis and Modeling

To provide detailed real-time 2D and 3D temperature, humidity and dew point distributions we are developing models based on principles of physics. The models use data from the wireless sensor network as input and their numerical solution is used for visualization and further analysis.

MMT Client GUI

Room layout information stored in the MMT Client is used to generate a 3D representation of the physical domain and a corresponding mesh. For example, in the above figure, on the left, objects of art, doors and windows are depicted, respectively, in green, orange and yellow. A corresponding mesh is shown on the right. A temperature distribution resulting from preliminary 3D numerical simulations appears below, visualized in 2D slices.

MMT Client GUI

News and Events

Deployment of IBM LMT at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC