In recent times, traffic congestion on the streets, unsuitable allocation of traffic signal timings and traffic accidents have become greater issues for the cities. A Smart Traffic Management System plays an essential role in the management of urban traffic, chiefly in the highly populated urban regions.
As per the prediction by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, almost 68 percent global population will be residing in metropolitan areas by 2050. With cities growing in number at breakneck speed, managing traffic-jams and monitoring course of vehicles becomes fundamental.
A smart traffic signal controlling system can solve the vehicular traffic issues like congestion at crossroads or on the streets by leveraging the next-generation technologies such as Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Internet of Things (IoT).
The Current Scenario of Traffic Signal Management in Cities
In the current scenario, traffic signal management is a primary matter of concern for the metropolitan cities. With the current approach, controlling urban mobility or monitoring the flow of transportation becomes quite challenging.
However, emergency vehicles such as fire brigades and ambulances also face tremendous traffic issues as they do not get the free lane to reach at the desired location on time.
As it currently stands, the prevailing traffic signal monitoring system becomes incompetent to manage and monitor the heavy traffic on road networks or road blockage at the signals. For this reason, urban cities require a centralized technique to regulate the movement of vehicles at the signal or on the roads efficiently.
An intelligent IoT based traffic signal monitoring system utilizing smart algorithms becomes the need of the hour to reduce heavy traffic flow by allowing a large chunk of vehicles to cross through the traffic signal.
IoT Technology – Surpassing the Flaws of Current Traffic Signal Monitoring System
In an automated and connected world, everything typically links to the internet. An Internet of Things (IoT) is one such technology which connects physical objects to the internet. The objects or devices, when brought onto a digital platform, can be controlled efficiently from anywhere at any time.
To overcome the shortcomings of current traffic signal management system, an IoT based traffic signal monitoring system must be implemented to control and monitor the signal timings.
In IoT, is capable of carrying out the following operations when integrated with the traffic signal monitoring system:
Track vehicles with the help of sensors
Count the number of vehicles passing through the signals
Observe and identify vehicles in real-time
The Functioning of IoT-based Smart Traffic Signal Monitoring
IoT based smart traffic signal monitoring (TMS) system consisting of several components such as cameras, RFID readers, wireless sensors, etc. are installed at the signals to observe the movement of vehicles. The powerful data analytics tools link GIS-enabled digital roadmap with traffic signals and traffic control rooms for real-time traffic monitoring.
An intelligent IoT based TMS system capture the image of traffic (which acts as input) at the cross-roads using digital image process technique. The system then transfers data (which acts as output) to the control room or users with the help of wireless sensors.
Besides this, the system also utilizes RFID tags and readers to track the vehicles in order to control traffic congestion at signals, trace a stolen vehicle or clear traffic for emergency vehicles. For this, emergency vehicles must be installed with RFID tags so that RFID readers by reading the signal can track the location of such vehicles in real-time. Thus, emergency vehicles can be given right-of-way.
Benefits OF IoT based Traffic Signal Monitoring System
Reduces traffic jams at the signals and on the streets
Real-time vehicular movement monitoring
A large chunk of vehicles can transit the signals efficiently
Tracking lost vehicles using RFID
Efficient and accurate traffic monitoring
Instant traffic clearance for emergency vehicle