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An RTI System Based on Cellular Radio for Traffic Efficiency and Safety

Objective

The roadside-to-vehicle communications necessary for DRIVE applications could be provided by existing or planned cellular radio systems. This technique could provide a very cost effective communications infrastructure, but at present its capabilities and limitations are not understood in detail. In particular it is widely believed that the capacity of such systems is too low. Studies by one of the consortium members have shown a way to overcome this problem by the use of a single common downlink and a single multiple-access uplink. In this way cellular radio, particularly GSM, can provide a high capacity duplex link without unduly loading the radio network.
Among the most important DRIVE applications are route navigation and driver information. This project concentrates on the use of cellular radio as the communications link for these purposes.
SOCRATES is a multinational study investigating the use of cellular radio for a complete system of road transport informatics (RTI), including dynamic route guidance and many other applications.
The main applications considered are:
dynamic route guidance;
advanced traffic control;
parking management and information systems;
fleet management;
public transport management and information systems;
hazard warning;
emergency calls;
emergency paging;
automatic debiting;
driver information;
data for traffic management and traffic planning.

The overall concept is based on the collection, storage and processing of road traffic information within traffic control centres, or SOCRATES information centres. 2-way information flow between vehicles and roadside infrastructure is essential to inform drivers via their in car units and to collect real time traffic data from the vehicles. The approach adopted is based on the use of a common downlink and a single, multiple access, uplink. Cellular radio can provide a high capacity duplex link necessary for the integrated road transport environment (IRTE) without unduly loading the radio network. The first year of the project confirmed the feasibility of the approach initially suggested to overcome the supposition that the capacity of cellular radio systems for RTI purposes would be too low. During the second year the concept was demonstrated, on street, in the Netherlands and work developing a major test site in Gothenburg has progressed well.
The main topics of the project are the use of cellular radio for high capacity duplex links to carry information, the dynamic updating of in car navigation aids to provide interactive route guidance and other traffic related applications of duplex radio links.
The work will demonstrate the feasibility of dynamic route guidance systems based on cellular radio; show that the proposed system can support other applications such as hazard warning, emergency calls, automatic vehicle location, road pricing, hotel/parking status, etc; quantify the capacity of the system in terms of numbers of users; show how the developed technology can be used in simplified user equipment; provide computer simulations of the data processing, information flows to and from the vehicles, and the navigation system; equip a test site in Gothenburg and use laboratory models and prototypes to verify and validate the theoretical predictions; make preliminary recommendations for a coherent system with route guidance and other applications supported by cell ular radio.
The work will:
(1) demonstrate the feasibility of dynamic route navigation systems based on cellular radio;
(2) show how the proposed communication links can also support other applications such as hazard warning, emergency calls, automatic vehicle location, road pricing, hotel/parking status, etc;
(3) quantify the capacity of the system in terms of numbers of users;
(4) show how the technology developed for cellular radio can be used in simplified equipment for DRIVE purposes;
(5) provide computer simulations of the data processing, the information flows to and from the vehicles, and the navigation system;
(6) equip a test site and use lab models and prototypes to verify and validate the theoretical predictions;
(7) make preliminary recommendations for a coherent system in which route navigation, and other applications, are supported by cellular radio.
Main Deliverables:
- Laboratory models of a dynamic database processor and adapted navigation tools.
- Test and demonstration of communication techniques and applications.
- Recommended specifications for "An RTI System Based on Cellular Radio" based on results from and evaluations of the prototype tests.

Coordinator

IAN CATLING CONSULTANCY

Participants (9)

BRITISH TELECOM PLC (BT)
United Kingdom
FEDERAL HIGHWAY RESEARCH INSTITUTE
Germany
Address
Bruederstrasse 53
51427 Bergisch Gladbach
PHILIPS PROJECT CENTRE GELDROP
Netherlands
Philips Research Laboratories Ltd
United Kingdom
ROBERT BOSCH GMBH
Germany
Address
Robert Bosch Strasse 200
31139 Hildesheim
Sema Group SA
France
Address
16-20 Rue Barbes
92126 Montrouge
Siemens AG
Germany
Address
Otto-hahn-ring 6
81739 München
UNIVERSITAT POLITECNICA DE CATALUNYA
Spain
Address
Jordi Girona 31
VOLVO/SAAB
Sweden