IoT and Transportation: How Technology is Improving The Way We Travel
Applying Internet-connected sensors in different areas of the transport sector serves to monitor different aspects of the vehicles and the business while bringing new utilities and services to customers. Digitized devices create new connections that allow transport companies to detect failures earlier and, therefore, prevent accidents, but also car traffic jams or crowds of users in public transport.
In this post, we explain the possible applications of IoT in transportation and the advantages for companies and customers, which will surely inspire you!
IoT Applications in Transportation
The data collected by sensors on traffic status and volume helps to regulate vehicle traffic and thus improve safety and infrastructure design and maintenance.
In addition, in times of environmental and corporate sustainability advocacy, connected devices in the IoT also serve to reduce pollution and improve the environment.
Public Transportation Management
Data on the number of public transport users, collected with IoT sensors, allows routes to be optimized or new ones to be designed. These sensors can be in the vehicle or also in the security cameras. The data would be used to create long-term strategies or to launch real-time warnings (e.g., of vehicle occupancy to users).
Likewise, analyzing the data also contributes in this case to reducing pollution and slowing down global warming.
Electric (Connected) Vehicle Infrastructure
As electric cars become more popular, a larger charging infrastructure will need to be deployed. The data collected by the sensors is used to design and remodel that infrastructure. Also, to alert drivers that there is a station nearby and managers if there is something to be repaired.
IoT Applied to Logistics
If we talk about IoT applied to logistics, sensorized trucks and vans help to know where the goods are at all times. Also, this use of IoT optimizes the number of vehicles on the road or the routes they follow, in order to save fuel and maintenance costs. Other useful data that sensors can collect to make decisions include speed, temperature, number of driving hours…
By collecting all this information, not only does the company become better organized. It also improves communication with its customers, since it can send them, for example, precise information about the time of arrival at the destination.
IoT in transportation can also be used to design steering wheel control systems. Information on speed or kilometers traveled alerts driving times and rest breaks. It can also warn drivers or their managers if kilometer-per-hour limits are exceeded.
In addition, road and environmental information warn drivers about sharp curves or other driving hazards, such as landslides or animals. Such information is also very important for the type of vehicle that we will now discuss.
Connected autonomous cars have and will have dozens of sensors (GPS, cameras, radar…) that collect data to ‘drive’ according to the information collected.
With them, the driving of the individual user is safer. In addition, data collection is used to improve systems and thus perfect vehicles that are destined to revolutionize our roads.
Advantages of IoT in Transportation
In summary, and as we have already seen in some cases, the advantages of IoT in transportation are:
- Preservation of the environment.
- Increased performance of companies, vehicles…
- Increased safety. Collecting and analyzing data on the state of the roads or the appearance of obstacles helps the population (drivers, pedestrians…) to have fewer chances of having an accident.
- Better customer experience, both for those waiting for goods to arrive and for those who use public transport or electric and autonomous vehicles. The brand image is also, therefore, more positive.
- Improved facilities. Train stations, airports, bus shelters… Everything that surrounds means of transport can also be optimized with the information provided by sensors.
At Plain Concepts, we have developed projects to apply Internet of Things in the transport sector, from aircraft maintenance to infrastructure management.
Thus, for an airport management company that wanted to optimize the energy consumption of the air conditioning system, we developed a solution that used arrivals and departures data along with internal and external humidity and temperature data. In this way, they saved money on airport air conditioning while contributing to environmental protection.
On the other hand, the GEO-VISUAL-MULTI-CAMERA (GVMC) project consists of a camera system that, using IoT Edge, artificial intelligence, and Computer Vision, monitors the location of vehicles within a port, even if the cars do not carry external identification.
We also used IoT Hub together with technologies such as Power BI and Azure Digital Twins, in order to create digital twins that would help with traffic management and monitoring. These twins were powered by data collected by IoT sensors and contribute to making cities more livable and traffic impacting the environment less.
IoT Edge and IoT Hub were two of the technologies used by our Research team to design a predictive maintenance tool for aircraft turbines. It collects information and is able to detect potential failures 30 cycles before they happen. Maintenance planning helps to save costs.
If you work in the transportation sector, all these options show how much a business can be improved by applying IoT. We work with you to harness the power of data and apply it to your operations.