Wed. Jun 16th, 2021

When Uriel Katz got struck seething at an interminable red light with zero-cross traffic many times, in 2017 co-founded Israel-based, Palo Alto, California-headquartered tech startup NoTraffic. According to the company, its cloud- and artificial-intelligence-based traffic control system in dense urban areas can halve rush-hour times. It reduces annual CO2 emissions by half-billion tons and slashes transportation budgets by 70 %.

Sensors perceive, identify, and analyze all traffic approaching each intersection, and then data to the cloud is shared. Here traffic flow and light timings are adjusted continuously, prioritizing evacuation traffic, emergency, and commuting patterns. Judicious allocation of green time means walk-signal time gets wasted or no green.

Intersections that employ devices that enable emergency vehicle prioritization or video cameras, or traffic-sensing pavement loops still rely on hourly traffic-flow predictions for timing. Siemens offers similar technology with centralized control, but it requires costly installation of fiber-optic or other wired-network connections. Because in cellular communications, the latency inherent can’t meet stringent standards set by ATC, NEMA, CalTrans, and others for safety and conflict resolution.

NoTraffic localizes is a concern, all the safety-critical decision-making at the intersection are done with a camera/radar sensor that can identify bikers, vehicles, and pedestrians observing each approach. Inside the existing control cabinet, these sensors are wired to a box that can also accept input signals from pressure loops or other existing infrastructure. AC power is required by the controller. It connects to the cloud via 4G/5G/LTE, but this connection merely allows data sharing that constantly monitors the signal timing of nearby intersections. NoTraffic promises to instantly connectivity, safety sensing, leapfrog legacy intersections to state-of-the-art intelligence.

Per intersections installation cost roughly equals the cost budgeted for preparing and maintaining camera intersections and inductive loops every five years. NoTraffic gear upgraded over the air and last longer, and this accounts for 70% cost saving. NoTraffic’s congestion-reduction claims don’t require Waze/Google/Apple Maps integration or vehicle-to-infrastructure communications.

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