GNSS for INnovative road Applications
Background & Objectives
Road transport today faces major challenges such as the ever increasing need for safety, as well as for reduced congestion and pollution. These problems are particularly critical in highly populated zones, notably big cities and their surrounding areas.
Different schemes are being proposed to improve the situation, including road-pricing systems to automatically charge drivers for their use of road infrastructures. Most of the road-charging systems are presently based on dedicated short-range communication (DSRC), but some international and European initiatives also demonstrate that pricing can rely on satellite-based technologies, which cover a greater road network without expensive roadside infrastructure.
Up to now, all these initiatives have necessarily used GPS as the satellite location system. However, it is recognised that this has limitations, in particular that there is no guarantee of the positioning information because there is no position integrity. With the advent of European GNSS, the position integrity will be available, which will allow for the use of this technology as the basis for charging applications.
Given the high potential of key applications, GINA will analyse and demonstrate that the adoption of EGNOS (and Galileo in the future) for road-user charging (RUC) and value-added services (VAS) is technically feasible and will offer new business opportunities to the road sector.
The work is split into two phases.
The project has finalised Phase I which covers all analysis activities and trial definitions, i.e.:
- investigating the current use of GNSS for RUC and VAS, and comparing the European GNSS performances with other technologies;
- performing a preliminary business model and market assessment;
- making an assessment of the technical feasibility of RUC and VAS applications and undergoing a technical definition of the architecture needed to provide these services;
- providing an analysis of specific aspects and issues related to RUC and VAS, the value added by the use of EGNOS/EDAS, matters related to the authentication of GNSS for road pricing and analysing the existing regulatory framework and policy issues;
- defining and organising the trials.
In Phase II development and organisational activities are almost complete. One hundred cars equipped with a dedicated On Board Unit (OBU) will drive on the Dutch roads for six months. An additional vehicle equipped with highly accurate equipment and the GINA OBU will record data for four weeks which allows for analysis from a different perspective. This will demonstrate how, and especially with what performance, GNSS technology based on the European GNSS infrastructure can support the implementation of a road-charging scheme like the one identified in the Netherlands and of VAS.
At the end of this phase, the results of the trials and outcomes of phase I will allow to define a thorough business exploitation plan for the use of European GNSS as a key technology for road pricing and VAS.
GINA proposes to address the existing obstacles that prevent a large-scale take-off of road pricing and other services (VAS) based on the use of EGNOS/Galileo by:
- proving the technical feasibility and economical viability of a large scale, GNSS-only road-pricing scheme;
- identifying the potential benefits related to congestion and pollution management;
- demonstrating the possibility of VAS running on a road-pricing operating platform, as well as the use of the same onboard equipment shared by different applications;
- understanding the added value of EU technology in terms of performance or cost improvement compared to using only GPS.
To confront these barriers, GINA intends to focus on three main activities:
- Performing an in-depth analysis of all the factors preventing a nationwide GNSS-based road-pricing solution and VAS running on the same platform. Legal, regulatory, interoperability and standardisation aspects will be tackled. Given the importance of understanding EGNOS/Galileo’s commercial feasibility, special emphasis will be placed on market and business aspects.
- A large-scale nationwide demonstration of a GNSS-based road-pricing scheme and VAS will be implemented in the Netherlands. The trial will have to comply with real end-user requirements.
- A solid awareness-raising strategy will contribute to the adoption of the EU GNSS for road pricing and VAS.
Work performed & results
Through the lessons learnt from the trials in the Netherlands, the GINA project ultimately aims to significantly contribute to the uptake EU GNSS in road-related applications, i.e. RUC and VAS.
This will be achieved by:
- demonstrating the benefits of EGNOS in enhancing end-to-end performance in a GNSS road-pricing solution and GNSS-based road applications. This will be focused on accuracy and availability levels, but additionally the benefits of EGNOS integrity (which becomes essential for the satisfaction of the overcharging requirement) to provide service guarantees;
- proposing a solid exploitation and business plan built on the results of the trials and the feedback from the participants, which will allow for proposing a feasible framework for the use of GNSS in RUC and VAS under a commercial perspective;
- assessing the effect of road-user charging in reducing congestion.