IoT-based sanitizer station network: A facilities management case study on monitoring hand sanitizer dispenser usage

Junqi Zhao, Boyang Zhou, Jared P. Butler, Randall G. Bock, Joseph P. Portelli, Sven G. Bilén

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Maintaining hand hygiene has been an essential preventive measure for reducing disease transmission in public facilities, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. The large number of sanitizer stations deployed within public facilities, such as on university campuses, brings challenges for effective facility management. This paper proposes an IoT sensor network for tracking sanitizer usage in public facilities and supporting facility management using a data-driven approach. Specifically, the system integrates low-cost wireless sensors, LoRaWAN, and cloud-based computing techniques to realize data capture, communication, and analysis. The proposed approach was validated through field experiments in a large building on a university campus to assess the network signal coverage and effectiveness of sensor operation for facility monitoring. The results show that a LoRaWAN created from a single gateway can successfully connect to sensors distributed throughout the entire building, with the sensor nodes recording and transmitting events across the network for further analysis. Overall, this paper demonstrates the potential of leveraging the IoT-based Sanitizer Station Network to track public health mitigation methods in a large facility, which ultimately contributes to reducing the burden of maintaining public health during and post-pandemic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)979-994
Number of pages16
JournalSmart Cities
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Urban Studies


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