Explaining International IT Application Leadership

IT enables elements within the transportation system - vehicles, roads, traffic lights, message signs, etc. - to become intelligent by embedding them with microchips and sensors and empowering them to communicate with each other through wireless technologies

ITS deliver five key classes of benefits by: 1) increasing safety, 2) improving operational performance, particularly by reducing congestion, 3) enhancing mobility and convenience, 4) delivering environmental benefits, and 5) boosting productivity and expanding economic and employment growth

The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation

Connected Vehicles Coordinating Control for Safety
Connected Vehicles Coordinating Control for Safety
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Intelligent Transportation Systems

Transportation systems are multi-modal in terms of vehicles, pathways, communications and control of traffic. EST offers a unique common mode of modelling and simulation that supports the empirical investigation of ideas, testing of hypotheses, searching high dimensional architecture spaces and solving problems in Intelligent Transportation Systems. Solutions might include safe intersections including multi-modal, crash avoidance and injury minimization, mitigating diseases due to gaseous and particulate vehicle emissions, and communication standards to underwrite safe cooperative mobility.

Vehicle2Vehicle (V2V) and Vehicle2Infrastructure (V2I-I2V) Communications
V2V and V2I-I2V Communications (click to enlarge)

Transportation systems are developed to satisfy social, technical and politico-economic objectives of moving people and goods effectively and efficiently. The objectives may conflict and evolve under the changing norms and expectations of society and the relentless advancement of technologies that underpin terrestrial, nautical and aeronautical vehicles, communication and control. These systems are both interesting and complex to investigate and analyze which highlights the need for adequate tools and methodologies to do so.

Transportation with an automotive focus: It is estimated that each year, world-wide, there are more than 1.3 million deaths and 20-50 million injuries due to automobile crashes, 1.6 million deaths due to acute and chronic medical effects from vehicle emissions, and ~20 billion litres of fuel and ~8 billion driver hours wasted in traffic congestion. These events cause significant costs to the environment and the flow-on costs to national health systems. In contrast, each year, world-wide about 1,200 deaths and a similar number of injuries occur in commercial aircraft crashes. Drivers cause more than 90% of terrestrial vehicle crashes, of which 50% occur at intersections. The data underscores the need for engineering safe terrestrial transport systems – an injunction applicable throughout the automotive supply chain, in urban transportation planning, in the control of traffic, and to the quantification of the economic savings in health and medical services.

Transport systems design has been the domain of pathway, traffic and congestion routing planners. High urban populations, high vehicle densities, complex pathways, and increasing exposure of the full economic cost of transport systems, are factors that argue strongly for a significant widening beyond the traditional scope of transportation analysis and planning to include, at least, the following:

  • How cooperative driving modes and adaptive traffic control can increase safety and utilization of infrastructure, and reduce energy consumption and emissions;
  • The impact on health of reducing gaseous and particulate emissions;
  • The impact on medical services of reducing death and injury from crashes;
  • Designing and fully verifying autonomous and supervisory control for active safety applications;
  • The full impact – accounting for all externalities including the transfer of EV emissions to central power generation plants - of urban and regional transportation systems on the local and wider economy and environment

EST’s ESSE Systems Engineering Workbench supports the modelling of transport systems at chosen levels of fidelity and the simulation of such systems with the highest performance. The ESSE Workbench provides the tools, models, technologies and methodologies needed for the empirical planning, investigation and optimal design of transport systems over their lifetimes. These capabilities are necessary to address the multi-faceted and complex issues canvassed above.