“Digital Disaster Prevention Exercise” Demonstration Experience Started in April 2022 – NTT Com’s Digital Twin Makes Steady Progress – CNET Japan

CNET Japan held an online conference “CNET Japan Live 2022” for two weeks from February 21 to March 4. The theme is “Innovation created by ‘knowledge gathering’ inside and outside the firm”. It’s an online event made up of a total of 18 programs, with challengers currently working on things like internal business competitions that seek internal wisdom and open innovation that combines the strengths of multiple companies as speakers.

On February 25, one of the project members, Mr. Teninton, explained the progress of the “Japanese Intelligent Society Concept” that NTT Communications Corporation (NTT Com) has been working on since 2020. The goal is to solve social problems through a virtual space close to the real world, called digital twin computing, but in April we will finally move on to a demo experience.

NTT Communications Innovation Center Business / UI Designer Mr. Teninton

NTT Communications Innovation Center Business / UX Designer Mr. Teninton

Visualize the “voice of the citizen” using virtual 3D CG space

The Japanese version of the Smart Society concept promoted by the company involves solving “problems that we know exist but don’t know how to solve” using technologies such as digital computing. By simulating in the same 3D space as in the real world to reveal problems and needs, and incorporating and checking various ideas, we will finally implement it in the real world and try to solve it. This is the basic idea.

In addition to this, the company said, “Latent user needs, ambiguous needs of which users themselves are unaware, and the voices and behaviors of citizens, including the silent majority, are visualized through simulation. , and individual behavior change and group decision-making The goal is to “promote consensus-building” and “create a mechanism to solve problems and meet needs with co-creation partners such than businesses and governments.

Create a platform for the digital twin simulation environment and repeat the check for problem solving.

Create a platform for the digital twin simulation environment and repeat the check for problem solving.

Explore potential user needs and needs they are unaware of in the virtual space

Explore potential user needs and needs they are unaware of in the virtual space

The metaverse is also a hot topic these days in terms of virtual space usage. In this regard, Nineton explains that digital twin computing is just a “digital copy” of the real world, similar to the metaverse, which can reproduce a virtual world that does not exist in reality. Digital twins market size is expected to be 17 trillion yen (2030) and Metaverse market size is expected to be 46 trillion yen (2028). Given that the AI ​​field is expected to reach 23 trillion yen in 2030, it can be said that digital twins are expected to be the second largest.

The theme the company is currently working on as the first step of the “Japanese Smart Society Concept” using such digital twins is weather disasters. “The impact of economic losses is significant and socially significant”, and the NTT Group may have an impact on its infrastructure such as communication equipment in the event of a disaster. If you think about it, this is an important initiative.

Among the weather disasters, we will focus on water-related disasters first, and conduct a “digital disaster prevention exercise” involving local residents of the relevant area in the 5 wards of Koto, where the probability of occurrence is high. decided to do so. In doing so, we will “visualize and re-recognize individual behavior before and after disaster strikes, and transform it so that it leads to disaster prevention and mitigation”.

What I noticed in “Feasibility study”

Two years after the start of the project, the company created part of the 5 wards of Koto, Tokyo, as a 3D space. The topographic data is based on open data led by the Ministry of Lands, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, and also uses map information from Zenrin. Assuming the flood extent and depth from the Geographical Survey Institute materials, we reproduced a simulation environment in which the damage situation changes over time under the technical guidance of Professor Yasuo Nihei, Faculty of science and technology, Tokyo University of Science.

Reproduces the area around JR Kitasenju Station in a virtual space

Part of the rooms of Koto 5 have been reproduced in the virtual space

PLATEAU topographic data and Zenrin map data are used to reproduce the virtual space.

PLATEAU topographic data and Zenrin map data are used to reproduce the virtual space.

According to the risk map of Koto 5 Ward, if the surrounding rivers are flooded, flood damage of up to 10 meters or more is expected, and the condition will continue for more than 2 weeks, and 2.5 million people, more than 90% of the inhabitants will be damaged, it is said. Based on this premise, we have created a simulation environment where you can live from pre-disaster to post-disaster on a PC, and a feasibility study which will be the pre-stage of the demo experience for dozens of local PTAs, condo management associations, students, businesses, and more. Established since 2021.

Technical advice requested from Professor Yasuo Nihei, Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Science and Technology, Tokyo University of Science as an advisor

Technical advice requested from Professor Yasuo Nihei, Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Science and Technology, Tokyo University of Science as an advisor

Through this feasibility study, Mr. Nineton conducts disaster prevention exercises for every region and facility in Japan, but most of them are based on fires and earthquakes, and the usefulness of conventional method as training in case of flooding. understood that he did not understand.

In addition, it is said that “it takes time and space to physically bring people together” to carry out disaster prevention exercises, but I realized once again the merit that digital disaster prevention exercises don’t have such problems. He also said that a hybrid method of first conducting a digital disaster prevention exercise and then confirming the part of concern with a real disaster prevention exercise is possible.

Feasibility study experienced by dozens of participants

Feasibility study experienced by dozens of participants

He added that while there is still room for improvement in the image quality of 3D space, it doesn’t have to be real. The purpose of the simulation is “to understand what a person is behaving and to be able to come back to it later”. There is a possibility that it will deviate from the objective.”

It is believed that it is easier for participants to take action close to reality if it is as realistic as they can imagine, so Mr Nineton said: “It’s hard to balance that”, but he will keep trying on video. quality It is said that mistakes will be repeated.

Also calling for participation from insurance, disaster prevention supplies and medical related businesses

Based on the results of the feasibility study which started in 2021, from April 2022 we will move to the next stage, the stage of demonstration experimentation. In the demo experience, we plan to further increase the number of participants, collect voices from more users, encourage participation from partner companies and governments, and examine more detail the potential as a social problem-solving platform.

From April 2022, finally at the demonstration experience stage

From April 2022, finally at the demonstration experience stage

The first thing we envision as a partner is a business responsible for social infrastructure such as clothing, food, housing and mobility. On top of that, Mr Nineton wants companies related to “insurance related to people and property, real estate, urban planning, disaster prevention supplies, medical care” to participate. For now, it will be targeted at the 5 neighborhoods of Koto, and it looks like the participants in the simulation will be limited to local residents, but eventually it will be open to the public so that residents of other neighborhoods can also play the game. experience this. As for the experience environment, a smartphone version will be prepared soon, and we plan to support VR/AR headsets and VR suits after 2024.

We also plan to support VR/AR headsets and VR suits in 2024.

We also plan to support VR/AR headsets and VR suits in 2024.

Finally, Mr. Nineton said, “Social issues are a set of problems for each user”, and through co-creation, “each user’s needs and problems can be provided as an answer when and where they are needed” . be the way to solve social problems.

The Japanese version of the company’s Smart Society concept is “co-creation” in the sense that “our coin is not enough. By multiplying different (company) coins, users will be able to use (the platform) seamlessly.” was a project that could not be done without him, and reiterated the participation of many companies and governments.

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