NewswireToday - /newswire/ -
Hannover, Lower Saxony, Germany, 2011/03/10 - At the end of 2010, the ÖBB Personenverkehr AG and ÖBB-Postbus GmbH commissioned HaCon with the licensing of the Smart-ITCS-Systems for buses in all of Austria.
In some regions of Austria, ÖBB-Postbuses are already on their way with Smart-ITCS-Systems from HaCon. The primary task of these systems is to generate real-time data and to enable secure connections between trains and buses. What has been tested successfully as a pilot in recent months will be realised in regular operation in the future: at the end of 2010, the ÖBB Personenverkehr AG and ÖBB-Postbus GmbH commissioned HaCon with the licensing of the Smart-ITCS-Systems for buses in all of Austria.
A computer-controlled operating system (RBL) or ITCS (Intermodal Transport Control System) is a computer network system for public transport. Thus, information between the vehicle and the control centre can be communicated and it supports operation. The Smartphones that are deployed as hardware are relatively inexpensive consumer devices, and most of the intelligence is centralised on a server. As a standard, the Smart-ITCS-Software developed by HaCon runs on Windows Mobile. HaCon will provide the software also for other viable platforms such as Android. In addition, an integration of the system in Windows CE-based board computers or ticket printers is possible.
Smart-ITCS generates real-time data
All trips of all lines are saved on the Smart-ITCS-System. First, one of these trips is identified as the current trip. While on the road, the Smart-ITCS-client transmits all the gathered GPS coordinates to the HAFAS server. Then, the server matches the set schedule data with the coordinates provided with a time stamp with. The purpose of the comparison is to finally obtain real-time data.
There are basically different ways in which a trip can be identified, so that the HAFAS server can determine which bus is sending GPS data via the Smart-ITCS: At the Postbus-version the bus driver selects the trip from several proposals, it is also possible to manually enter the vehicle ID. The trip proposals in turn are generated by the server from an analysis of GPS data and subsequently transmitted to the mobile device. In addition, the identification of a trip is read out using the ID of the driver or the vehicle. Optionally, the trip can also be identified fully automatically: If the trip is clearly identifiable from the available GPS data, the list of proposed trips contains just one suggestion, so that the journey has already been clearly assigned. This way, the software is basically designed to the purpose that the bus driver only needs to interact as little as possible and is free to concentrate on controlling the bus.
Since the current position is regularly transmitted automatically to the server while driving, delays are recorded continuously. These are transferred to the HAFAS timetable information server and are available for passenger information on the Internet, via station boards, at the bus stops or on board of a vehicle.
At the bus stop: all of the delays of feeder lines at a glance
At each stop, the driver gets sees the scheduled arrival on the screen as well as actual arrival times of feeder lines of which he can expect alighting passengers. He recognises which connections are at risk and for how long he possibly needs to wait. The built-in Smart-ITCS-arrival boards for each stop are specially filtered. Trips on the same route or in the opposite direction are not displayed. Only those connections which are useful according to the scheduled timetable are set out. If a connection can be held only because of the actual arrival time while it would not have been possible according to the planned timetable, the new connection will be listed. In a further stage of expansion it will be possible to predefine the number of recommended waiting minutes. This will assists the driver in the choice of the optimal waiting time. He decides, ultimately, for how long he can wait without jeopardizing subsequent connections, for example due to the current weather conditions and the resulting traffic situation.
Between two stops: one's own punctuality in sight
En route between two stops the bus driver sees his next stop including the expected delay minutes – displayed at the running path view on the screen of the Smartphone. This information is again of interest to colleagues waiting at the next stop for the feeder lines.
The communication between bus drivers and the operations centre or from bus driver to bus driver is substantially improved by the new Smart-ITCS. Agreements are not only made occasionally by radio, but all parties are at all times up-to-date with the delay situation because of the information presented on the screen of the Smartphone.
Smart-ITCS provide an economical alternative to full-ITCS systems. To those who do not want to go without securing connections and real-time information, Smart-ITCS-Systems offer a highly professional and a user-friendly solution.
Please contact for further information: HaCon Ingenieurgesellschaft mbH, Lister Straße 15 | 30163 Hannover | Germany | P: +49 (0) 511 3369 9-0
Right from the start in 1984 HaCon (hacon.de) has focused its activities on traffic and logistic solutions. A team of more than 140 experienced employees in the ranges of IT and transport planning have turned the company into one of the leading players in the field of planning, scheduling and information systems.
HaCon has developed and implemented the timetable information system of Deutsche Bahn (German Railway). Furthermore, numerous European railway companies, transport enterprises and/or groups use the timetable information system HAFAS. In addition, HAFAS serves as a universal information system. Therefore, it can be applied in the flight and goods traffic as well. Another successful product developed by HaCon is the Train Planning System TPS for timetable construction and network capacity management. It convinces more and more customers across Europe.