CitySense - An Open, Urban-Scale Sensor Network Testbed

CitySense is an urban scale sensor network testbed that is being developed by researchers at  Harvard University and  BBN Technologies. CitySense will consist of 100 wireless sensors deployed across a city, such as on light poles and private or public buildings; our current target is to deploy the network in Cambridge, MA. Each node will consist of an embedded PC, 802.11a/b/g interface, and various sensors for monitoring weather conditions and air pollutants. Most importantly, CitySense is intended to be an open testbed that researchers from all over the world can use to evaluate wireless networking and sensor network applications in a large-scale urban setting.

CitySense is supported by the  National Science Foundation and  Microsoft Corporation.

For more information, please contact  Prof. Matt Welsh.

Summer Research Opportunities for Harvard Undergraduates

CitySense node mounted on a streetlight in Cambridge, MA.

A CitySense node mounted on a streetlight in Cambridge, MA.


December 3, 2008: You can now access our sensor data to retrieve historical weather and pollution data. Both raw SQL access as well as a web-form to retrieve data in XML or .csv formats are supported.

March 21, 2008: We have completed a deployment of 5 nodes mounted on streetlights around the BBN campus in Cambridge, MA. In addition we have 5 nodes mounted on rooftops at Harvard, as well as a 14-node indoor testbed, also at Harvard.

Some press coverage of CitySense:

Live Status Page

You can  query the sensor data collected by CitySense here.

You can view the locations and live data collected by CitySense nodes using Microsoft's SensorMap web interface. Click here for the  BBN nodes and  Harvard nodes in SensorMap.

The Harvard testbed node status can be viewed in Ganglia.

You can also view live weather data from the BBN weather sensor nodes at the  Live Monitor Page.

Principal Investigators

Students and Staff