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Of the many IoT innovations cities and regions around the globe have tried in recent years, smart transportation systems have moved from pilots to rollouts and have gained a promising measure of success.

One ambitious project in the Netherlands now relies on hundreds of smart traffic signals to recognize approaching vehicles, which helps ambulances move safely and more quickly to their destinations and offers truck drivers advisories about less congested routes to help reduce pollution.

The Talking Traffic platform there allows Dutch drivers to communicate with the road environment via the internet over their mobile phones or an updated dashboard navigation system. Dutch authorities said the system reached more than 1 million users in 2018, which increased to 2.5 million users in 2020. More recently, an Urban Data Access Platform went live in January to provide one central repository where all information about smart mobility can be received and sent.

UDAP provides the connection with traffic lights to give emergency services the top priority, but public buses and cyclists can also get priority at certain intersections. Traffic lights can also be used to optimize flows.

A recent initiative also calls for adding 1,000 traffic signals to the existing 800 smart signals at a cost of 20 million Euros shared by cities, provinces and the federal government.

Within a few years up to 3,000 traffic lights will be made smart, according to an estimate from 2018.

One primary objective in expanding the number of signals is to lessen crashes when emergency vehicles are forced to drive through a red light on their way to a scene. There were 165 such accidents in 2018 and 2019. A full report evaluating the success Talking Traffic is expected in June, although comments from drivers of emergency vehicles indicate the system makes a “huge difference,” according to Vincent Habers, a senior advisor at Talking Traffic in an email.

The system helps by improving the speed the emergency drivers can cross an intersection and it also means they no longer are forced to cross against a red light, which can prevent a legal snag, he said.

The nationwide smart traffic system in the Netherlands creates an enormous amount of data that must flow almost instantly from traffic signals and loop sensors in every lane every few miles.

To create a service hub to gather that information on road conditions, Dutch telco giant KPN and the Dutch government worked beginning in 2016 with Klarrio, a firm devoted to real-time streaming, data analysis and processing with U.S. offices in North Carolina. The collaboration created a streaming, cloud-native platform for real-time data processing with the initial goal of reducing traffic jams by 20% on busy routes and reducing travel times by 10%.

The hub can manage communications between more than 5,000 traffic lights and 2 million cars as well as 50,000 loop sensors, parking meters and public transit.  All the different groups using the hub manage their own applications within the hub, which works securely with low latency of less than 200 milliseconds, according to the Klarrio website.

Klarrio co-founder Jim Smith said the Dutch system will even be able to track whether a bridge over the nation’s many canals is operating properly. In a fireside chat during the IoT Technologies Summit, Smith said Klarrio’s main challenge is ingesting enormous amounts of data, then making sense of the data in a timely fashion. The entire fireside chat is available on this video.

A system with 1,000 sensors is very small. “It’s complicated with millions or half a million devices,” he said. Klarrio employs a data science team to deal with systems that create 1 petabyte of data in six months, equivalent to 11,000 4K movies that would take 2.5 years to watch.

The Netherlands intelligent transportation system is not unique, although is extremely rare to see a system spread across an entire nation. Such systems are deployed in many U.S. cities in urban areas that are not usually connected to nearby suburbs, counties or states.

In one example, Carlsbad, California, near San Diego has deployed a parking and traffic management system with AI that adapts to changing conditions on the ground. “The transportation management sector has worked and is moving to greater mobility,” he said during the same IoT summit. “That’s an area that’s working” in the smart cities trend.

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Autor(en)/Author(s): Matt Hamblen

Quelle/Source: Fierce Electronics, 18.03.2021

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