On occasion we have had the opportunity to talk about the importance of sustainable roads and why it is necessary to move towards a scenario where most of the roads are solar. In the same vein, and since Detea is always committed to sustainability and environmental protection, as well as to the development and implementation of new technological models in the sector, today we are once again talking about roads and about trying to improve the technology that we apply in its construction. In this way, we will soon be able to turn the roads we drive into true intelligent roads.
But, these advances not only improve our environment but also offer possibilities to drivers that we had not considered before. Have you ever thought about what these smart roads would be like?
A smart road is one capable of collecting a lot of interesting and useful data for drivers. In this way, relevant information is provided to increase the safety of travelers. They also keep the authorities aware of the most relevant information. Some circumstances, such as those related to weather or traffic, will be foreseen, but also information and help can be provided in case of an accident and similar incidents. This system informs about the asphalt pavement temperature, street lighting, alternative routes to reduce waiting times, consumption of gasoline and fossil-fuel emissions.
Where do smart roads come from?
They appear in response to progress according to four factors:
Ecology: as we said, the environmental issue plays an increasingly important role. People are more environmentally aware and require their government to take measures.
Production and maintenance costs: since road maintenance and production, costs are very high with the current system, countries have begun to think about other options to reduce costs, which has facilitated the appearance of alternative projects based on the use of new technologies.
traffic: What can be more annoying while driving than high traffic? This has a direct impact on the economy and health. For this reason, especially in large cities where a large number of vehicles are concentrated, the possibility of being informed in real time of how the traffic varies makes smart roads an attractive advance for all.
Smart cars: Each time we are stepping closer to a future where most cars are autonomous. For that reason, roads must be adapted to the same technological level as vehicles. The use of electric vehicles also makes necessary the existence of charging points.These roads are also designed with electric charging lanes that charge your batteries while driving.
It is true that more and more cities show their concern for environmental preservation and avoid large concentrations of CO2, for example, in capital cities such as Madrid, Paris, Berlin, London or Rome where there are already methods for monitoring environmental pollution. However, attempts have been made with smart roads, it is not a reality yet. But little by little some projects have led the way to these innovative proposals.
In the Netherlands, for example, A road capable of storing sunlight energy during the day and providing a large amount of light during the night was already implemented, thanks to the application of a dynamic fluorescent paint.
Another similar case is Hamburg. The German city has a smart road with cameras, radars and sensors whose function is to send information through Wi-Fi.
On the other hand, in Dallas a really pioneer highway has been built. It has automatic tolls with sensors not requiring cars to stop. But this is not the newest trend. This US toll has variable rates, depending on the traffic levels in each lane, when traffic is heavy, rates increase.
In general, there are numerous pilot projects that try to develop this type of roads and it is only a matter_of time they become true.