Tolling On The Go
VITRONIC TollCheckerfreeflow tolling systems already fulfill the EETS guidelines and ensure cost-efficient and resource-saving vehicle detection and classification in free-flowing traffic.
Since the introduction of VITRONIC TollChecker tolling systems as the world's first multi-lane, single gantry solution in 2003, the demand for modern, electronic tolling solutions has increased significantly. While issues concerning detection quality and classification rates prevailed in the early years, the focus today is on flexible, scalable, low-maintenance and sustainable solutions. In addition, the required implementation of the EETS guidelines represents a new challenge to the systems' interoperability.
Interoperability and EETS conformity are mandatory
The guidelines of the European Electronic Toll Service (EETS) of October 2009 require that tolling operators implement the European tolling service for vehicles over 3.5 tons within three years and for all other vehicles within five years, provided electronic tolling systems are used.
As the technical basis for the solution, the EETS guideline includes a framework on the basis of CEN 5.8GHz standards for the On Board Unit (OBU) and the Road Side Equipment (RSE). In addition, DSRC components are required which are able to communicate with the OBUs of the different tolling operators. TollCheckerfreeflow systems already use DSRC components on the basis of Microwaves and thus fulfill all requirements of operations in compliance with EETS today.
Protecting resources as a principle
Multi-Lane-Free-Flow tolling systems (MLFF) already contribute to reducing vehicle fuel consumption and emissions through their functional principle, i.e. by maintaining a steady traffic flow. Moreover, the concept behind the systems also provides significant potential for saving resources, for example, through reduced energy consumption and optimized use of raw materials.
TollCheckerfreeflow system sensors, for example, are housed in particularly compact and lightweight casing – with two positive side effects: the use of raw materials is minimized and at the same time the design requirements of a single gantry solution are simplified. The energy consumption of the detection systems as well as the connected components and their power supply have been extensively optimized towards energy efficiency.
Better performance, lower costs
MLFF single-gantry solutions significantly minimize the time, effort and costs for the required infrastructure when compared to toll plazas. These savings can be increased further with non-invasive, automated single gantry tolling systems such as TollCheckerfreeflow.
Modular system architecture: Due to the modular design of the system components, tolling systems can be easily and quickly expanded when needed and adapted more efficiently to new requirements.
Automated processes: TollCheckerfreeflow allows complete and non-invasive documentation through automated vehicle classification, automated license plate detection in flowing and slow-moving traffic - including vehicles' front and rear plate identification.
High detection rates: The Detection and classification modules ensure high detection rates with maximum resolution within a wide detection zone – even when traffic volumes are very high. Even small vehicles and motorcycles are reliably identified.
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Secure classification: Vehicles can be classified according to size, number of axles and other parameters, including trailers, for example.
Customized adaptations: TollCheckerfreeflow makes it possible to capture and classify vehicles on one- to six-lane roads – via front or rear measurement or a combination of both. The required subsystems work independently of one another. The system components can be configured redundantly if required. This flexibility allows the tolling system to be adapted to individual requirements regarding performance and costs.
Durable construction: The RSE features robust, standardized communication lines for the system's internal data exchange. The components are also optimally protected against severe weather conditions thanks to their high protection class.
Simplified installation, maintenance and control
Not only does the performance capability of TollCheckerfreeflow provide maximum cost efficiency during operation: The simple installation, maintenance and control processes significantly contribute to sustained cost savings.
Modular hardware: TollCheckerfreeflow components are not installed directly on the gantry construction, but rather on standardized brackets which make it easy to set up and adjust the sensor boxes. The brackets also allow an easy exchange of the sensor modules while maintaining the set-up and adjustment values in case maintenance work is required. Thanks to the compact and lightweight housing, the modules can be installed and removed within a very short period of time while leaving enough room on the gantry for service personnel.
In addition, the modular design of the entire system saves time and costs for installation and maintenance. Down times are reduced to the absolute minimum, as only individual components have to be replaced in case of a defect. The complete system will continue to operate even if one component fails. The maintenance-friendly design of the sensor housing means defective parts can be replaced quickly.
Web-based management software: The TollCheckerfreeflow system components are automatically calibrated and configured at system start-up. The system also starts up automatically after maintenance work has been performed. The RSE can be easily configured, administered and controlled in the back office thanks to a web-based user interface. Updates to the configuration are automatically installed via remote access.
In 2010, TollChecker earned VITRONIC the Toll Excellence Award sponsored by the International Bridge Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA).Since then, it has been even further optimzed and is deployed in prestigious charging schemes like the French national Truck Tax system “Ecotaxe”.