The team from the Alstom Digital Mobility centre of excellence located in madrid is already working on a solution that will complement tram signalling systems, aimed at avoiding collisions at urban intersections.
How can coexistence between trams and vehicles be improved? Intersections and the daily coexistence between different traffic systems are at the heart of most tram collisions. The solution? Taking some of the devices of the autonomous car, such as cameras, sensors and radar, and applying them to tram signalling.
The team from the Alstom Digital Mobility Centre of Excellence located in Madrid is already working on a solution that will complement tram signalling systems, aimed at avoiding collisions at urban intersections.
The experience in the tramway system currently in service says that the majority of accidents in crossroads are not caused by the tramway but by the other vehicles.
Conventional protection systems for trains (ATP) or driverless systems (ATO) provides extra protection against tramway driver errors, but does not mitigate accidents caused by cars, vans or motorcycles.
There are several behavior patterns of the vehicles nearby a crossroad which might cause an accident with a tramway that can be anticipated. For instance:
- A vehicle approaches a crossroad at a speed too high to halt with comfort before a red light
- A vehicle shows its intention to perform a left turn forbidden
- A vehicle still in the intersection zone with the tramway tracks
- A vehicle passing a signal at danger
The installation of additional technologies at these intersections, such as those used in autonomous cars, plus real-time computerised analysis of the data obtained, can detect these behaviours and warn tram drivers sufficiently in advance. Identification of these behaviours using cameras, radars and other sensors would, in this way, complement traditional railway signalling, thereby improving and complementing current safety systems.