ACES demo session at the DECIDO final conference

The DECIDO final conference “DECIDO: Shaping the Future of Evidence-Informed Policy Making,” took place on the 22nd of February 2024 at the Renaissance Brussels Hotel in Brussel. The conference presented the results of the H2020 project DECIDO – eviDEnce and Cloud for more InformeD and effective pOlicies (DT-GOVERNANCE-12-2019-2020), and also featured a session on bridging innovations and exploitation, culminating in a discussion with representatives from other EU projects within the DECIDO Horizon Europe Community. Lastly, a presentation of the DECIDO book, “A Paradigm in policymaking: the Horizon 2020-101004605 DECIDO project,” by Sapienza Università Editrice has been held.

Fred Buining from Hiro Microdatacenters hosted a demo session on the ACES projects and its possible applications to the smart city paradigm. ACES is at the forefront of revolutionizing data-intensive applications close to the source of data and close to where data is used, such as in smart city infrastructures, through advanced edge computing solutions. Emphasizing the importance of cities as our future, HIRO addresses the challenges posed by urbanization. By 2050, 60% of the world’s population will reside in urban areas, significantly increasing energy consumption and CO2 emissions. In this context, data emerges as the new oil, with cities being the vast reservoirs of this valuable resource. ACES leverages self-configuring and self-adjusting AI-based services, robust infrastructures, and a citizen-centric approach to navigate towards the goal of achieving climate-neutral and smart cities by 2030. ACES mediates between two contrasting models for smart city development: centralized and distributed. The centralized approach, characterized by large-scale investments and high consumption of resources, contrasts sharply with the distributed model, which focuses on localized processing and scalable investments to meet local needs efficiently, guaranteeing higher performance and lower operational costs due to optimization of infrastructure and data-transfer requirements.

Figure 1 – Two extreme scenario’s for Smart city 6.0 (source: Fred Buining)

At the core of ACES strategy is the Edge Micro Data Center (EMDC), a modular and scalable solution designed to deliver high efficiency and ensure digital sovereignty. These units range from small enclosures to large shipping containers, equipped with a mix of processing technologies to support big data and AI needs, while ensuring energy efficiency with a Power Utilizing Efficiency of 1.03. Key to the ACES approach is the principle of digital sovereignty, ensuring that data, AI, and applications are governed in a manner that promotes transparency, trust, and GDPR compliance. The concept of Edge as a Service (EaaS) encapsulates this, offering flexible and resilient edge computing resources with a focus on low initial costs, subscription-based support, and rapid deployment capabilities.

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