So that everything flows – Integrated Truck Guidance
The traffic management system: An ideal foundation for the optimization and harmonization of multimodal transport carriers for the hubs of the future
The worldwide growth of cargo flows presents huge challenges to transport hubs such as ports, airports or freight terminals. Hubs have to be more high-performance and remain accessible, even if the capacities of the routes in the hinterland are limited and expansions are only conditionally possible. The ramifications: existing infrastructures must be used more efficiently.
In order to increase efficiency at logistic nodes, foremost the faster processing of trucks offers large potential: Unnecessary waiting times with long jams at peak times can be avoided and comprehensive transparency of the current traffic situation in and on the hubs clears bottlenecks out of the way.
Here a new, intelligent traffic management system creates new capacities!
Everything in sight
After the truck driver has logged into the system via a Smartphone App, his/her position is determined via GPS. Drivers, logistics service providers and terminal operators recognize at a glance whether the planned arrival time agrees with the predicted one. If this is the case, the driver can continue on the planned route. A smooth workflow is ensured.
And also if delays occur logistics service providers and terminal operators can reschedule based on that information. The truck driver receives the next possible slot, which would prevent jams and reduce waiting times. If a new slot is not immediately available and last minute waiting times occur, the driver is automatically informed via the App about available parking spots and can then continue on with a new target slot.
Information in flow
Special cameras are set up at defined points and determine the travel time. The gathered information is put in anonymous form and forwarded via standardized interfaces to the centralized office.
All information comes together at the centralized office. Here Siemens Sitraffic Concert software is implemented as the so-called Application Service Providing (ASP). This means that the required systems do not have to be installed at each one’s computer. Connection is made from a highly secure Internet access.
The processed transport information is fed back to the truck driver via a Smartphone App and dynamic LED displays.
Information about the traffic situation and on travel times is made available to freight forwarders and terminals via the Sitraffic web portal.
Logistics processes can be even more efficiently designed in the future through this intelligent inbound control. Also the integration of IT systems will be pursued in order to improve traffic flow. For truck drivers. For freight forwarders. For logistics service providers. For hub operators.
Current status of the project:
The systems for traffic flow collection and dynamic information signs in the areas of logport and Ruhrort are installed – the pilot operation is running. Driving time information on the information signs enable truck drivers to choose the optimum route. This first visible step is the beginning of implementation. The intelligent App is now running parallel in the final development phase and also is already being tested in pilot operation.
After a successful pilot phase the system should be expanded to other parts of the port. The basis for successful implementation of the project is the close and very good cooperation with the city of Duisburg and the state of NRW.
Since only transport information was collected and no photos were taken of individuals, privacy was maintained at all times.
Determination of travel time
The road network between Duisburg-Ruhrort and logport I (Duisburg-Rheinhausen) is included in the traffic management system. With this travel times on alternative routes are recorded and transmitted via information boards to the truck drivers. Thus truck drivers receive at all times a current decision basis for the most favorable route to logport I or to the Ruhrort port area.
Travel times on sections of the route can be precisely determined by the recognition of vehicle signatures between two cameras. The vehicle signatures are recorded with the aid of ANPR cameras (ANPR = Automatic Number Plate Recognition.
The valid privacy regulations (BDSG § 6b) are used in the scope of the use of video surveillance technology. Notifications signs refer to the surveillance.
To reliably ensure privacy, already in the first step of data processing, after recognition the license plate numbers are converted directly into an anonymous character chain inside the camera. No image data is saved or forwarded.
The conversion of the character string is made together with the Salt using a Hash algorithm. The result is reduced to 18 bits. This achieves an ambiguity of the results. Tracing is thus excluded, since a clear assignment of the vehicle signature to the license plate is no longer possible.
Along with the previously described action there is also a technical restriction to exclude the recognition of persons. For this reason a filter in the range of 850nm is used for all infrared cameras. In this way neither the number nor the appearance of the occupants of a vehicle can be detected.