Physical Analytics - High Value Buildings



Dense wireless sensor networks can monitor environmental conditions with high spatial and temporal resolution. The solution rely on small footprint sensing nodes (radios and sensors) that can operate on batteries in excess of 5 years. The utility of these sensors networks in high value buildings like museums, hospitals, or data centers is currently pursued.

A wireless sensor network composed of more than 200 sensing point was installed at the Cloisters section of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The project evaluated the utility of wireless sensor networks in a museum environment and proposed to understand art objects response to temperature fluctuations. The collaboration documented the minuscule fluctuations of temperature and relative humidity in galleries and recorded the seasonal changes of environmental conditions across multiple years. This collaboration was the first attempt to correlate highly accurate real-time measurement of temperature and relative humidity with art objects response to these changes.

The data acquired by the sensor network was directly coupled with Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) models to visualize the three dimensional changes of temperature in response to visitors entering in a gallery. The three dimensional temperature and relative humidity models within galleries can pinpoint locations that have the most stable environmental conditions and could potentially drive art object placement optimization to specify locations where environmental fluctuation are the smallest.

The collaboration lead to the development of customized strain/stress and corrosion sensors that can be easily attached or placed around art object. The collaboration also validated the utility of real time wireless network and quantified the requirements for communications and suitable sensors for museum settings.






Picture of the Cloisters at Metropolitan Museum of Art and a snapshot of the Computational Fluid Dynamic simulations of temperature distribution/stratification in a gallery.


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               Metropolitan Museum of Arts,USA

               Hampton Courts, UK

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