Intelligent systems and sensor technologies

As a further element to the integrated technology framework with our customer and vehicle technologies, we have delivered major intelligent systems and sensor technologies across transport networks. Smart sensors gather a growing range of rich and real-time data which is consumed by intelligent systems. These systems use advanced computing, artificial intelligence and machine learning to process large volumes of data quickly and reliably to manage and optimise road, rail, cycleways and waterway networks, so they are safer, more efficient and we can respond more quickly to congestion and incidents. Smart sensors, data analytics and intelligent systems are also critical for the future operation of connected and automated vehicles.

We have been transforming our systems technology to benefit all customers using our transport networks, by managing the networks more dynamically and to prioritise different modes of transport at different times and locations, according to local movement and place objectives and changing needs. The systems described below have been transforming our road, rail, public transport and freight services.

Optimising our networks and informing customers through smart systems 

Transport has invested in major systems that optimise the operation of the road and rail networks. The multimodal Intelligent Congestion Management Program (ICMP) is an adaptive intelligent transport system that delivers real-time road status data for traffic, public transport, private motorways, emergency services, field crews, and traffic alerts to our Transport Management Centre. ICMP consumes real-time data to quickly detect traffic patterns, share live customer information with passenger and freight road users, and applies machine learning to automatically generate congestion alerts. This enables the Transport Management Centre to make informed management decisions much faster, resulting in more reliable journeys with minimised congestion.

ICMP is complemented by the Sydney Coordinated Adaptive Traffic System (SCATS) signal control system which optimises traffic flow. Intelligent algorithms process real-time data to make intelligent signalling decisions and adapt to real-time changes. SCATS provides major time and cost savings with a 25 per cent reduction in vehicle stops, 28 per cent reduction in travel times, 15 per cent reduction in emissions and 12 per cent less fuel consumed, adding up to $24 million in economic benefits each day in Sydney.

SCATS Cornerstone is a new spatial data and integration platform that ensures consistent intersection data for future ITS technologies, providing better visibility of the transport network and adaptive traffic management using C-ITS connected vehicle technology and real-time spatial data analysis.

Linked with SCATS, the Public Transport Information and Priority System (PTIPS) is an intelligent transport system used to track, predict and prioritise public transport movements through intersections. It uses machine learning to analyse and predict movements and prioritise high-capacity public transport, to improve customers’ travel times and reliability. The SCATS Priority Engine is scalable and can be activated for freight and emergency services vehicles so they can reach incidents more quickly and save lives. PTIPS won the Overall Best Smart City Project at the 2017 Smart City Awards.

For the rail system, Automatic Train Protection (ATP) technology is being installed on train fleets across the electrified rail network, providing safer and more reliable services. With transponders installed in the rail corridor and on the suburban and intercity train fleet, ATP provides critical speed monitoring and signal information to the driver.

As part of the More Trains, More Services program, the Digital Systems Program replaces trackside signalling with the latest train control technology, and implements Automatic Train Operation to help drivers provide reduced and more consistent journey times. It also introduces a traffic management system to help train services to recover quickly from disruption. More Trains, More Services will increase network capacity to meet future demand, provide faster and more reliable journeys, and real-time information. 

A growing set of freight data is available on the Freight Data Hub and Open Data Hub, including telematics data from heavy vehicles enrolled in the Intelligent Access Program. The Heavy Vehicle Interactive Telematics Map provides an interactive visualisation tool and valuable insights into where, when and how heavy freight vehicles are operated, to assist freight operators to optimise supply chain efficiency and to better inform freight planning.

ICMP connects over 18,000 kilometres of NSW’s State roads network

SCATS is installed in over 55,000 intersections in 28 countries globally