Tasmania gets 4D Digital Twin with Virtual Tas using laser scanning and image capture technology.
Enzen Australia and 42-24, a subsidiary of TasNetworks, launched Virtual Tas, a joint venture that will take annual statewide aerial photos of Tasmania to create a 4D Digital Twin.
Using laser scanning and imaging technology, along with the ability to model and visualize big data, Virtual Tas will create a life-size 4D map (known as Digital Twin) that will be used to help prevent and respond to natural disasters (e.g., forest fires and floods), guiding remote rescue missions and guiding new infrastructure and developments.
The development of Virtual Tas will provide the opportunity to create safer and more resilient communities while having a positive economic impact on the SAP of between $160-$320 million over ten years.
Sean McGoldrick, CEO TasNetworks and Chairman of Virtual Tas, said: “We are proud and excited to be the core customer for Virtual Tasmania. Over ten years, it will change how we operate as a utility company. We expect this project every become part of our business, from asset management to vegetation management to travel and making sure our people are safe; it will ensure that our network is reliable and that we deliver efficiently and affordably to our customers.”
Enzen Australia CEO and Board Director of Virtual Tas, Dileep Viswanath, said: “We are delighted to be working with 42-24, TasNetworks and our government partners on Virtual Tas and for the future of this digital technology and business model in Australia and globally. We are excited about what this will do for Tasmania and its businesses and communities by enabling collaboration using new and shared data on an open and extensible platform.
Disaster SMART Tasmanian Communities is a first use case of the technology, which Mr. Viswanath said is an exciting development for Australia and the future of planning and disaster management.
Enzen has received $2.6 million in federal funding from the National Recovery and Resilience Agency to deliver a digital twin solution, disaster risk reduction, and community resilience application using annual data and modeling provided by Virtual TAS.
Virtual Tas’ Digital Twin will be built using a foundation of Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR), adding satellite data, drone imagery, high-resolution photography, and other data to create a tapestry of all forms of spatial data. Bringing new technology together with existing data will enrich the information available, allowing it to be used for in-depth planning and infrastructure, especially in remote and inaccessible locations.
Enzen Australia, leader of Smart Energy and Water and Board Director of Virtual Tas Ian McLeod, said Digital Twin would also capture data from a LoRaWAN Internet of Things network that will detect the environment and infrastructure and update the model in real-time.
“This is practically applicable for asset management, risk, defect management, vegetation management, network design, measurement under clearance, and task definition,” said Mr. McLeod.
“Some elements of the technology have been used for specific purposes in Australia and globally, but this will be the first time that an entire state has been captured at such high resolution for the specific purpose of delivering high-quality data and services to multiple industries, enabling more cross-sectoral collaboration,” he said.
42-24 leader and managing director of Virtual Tas, Kelly Walker, said Digital Twin would use annual laser scanning of aircraft for the next ten years to create and enhance the Digital Twin.
“This is about helping build a better Tasmania, protecting and saving lives, and working smarter,” said Ms. Walker.
“It’s about ensuring Tasmanians have the best data models in Australia to prevent and respond to natural disasters, explore our island safely, and build more efficiently.
“In recent years, we have seen the devastating effects of fire and flooding in Australia. The kind of detailed 4D models achieved by Virtual Tas will become an important weapon in how we prevent, plan, rescue, and fight back in the future,” she said.
TasNetworks is a foundation customer for Virtual Tas, committed to ten years. Major use cases for TasNetworks include vegetation management, asset management (defect identification), measurement under free space, network design, and task demarcation.
The TBN team is an established group of technology industry professionals with backgrounds in IT systems, business communications, and journalism.