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Stinson ITS Webinar: Safer, smarter roads in Canada

Paving the way for safer, smarter roads in Canada

Join us at the Stinson ITS webinar as Phil Avery, our Founder and Managing Director, provides key insight into improving the future of highways, specifically safer and smarter roads in Canada and across Europe. He will be joined by Michael McGuire, Manager & Solutions Architect, and Ajay Kaushik, Technical Sales Director at Stinson ITS.  

Together they began with a discussion on the existing challenges on the roads in Canada. Then, Phil shared his expertise on how radar sensors can future-proof highway networks in North America. They also discussed how Navtech's ClearWay solution can improve the detection of events, explore how it integrates with Advanced Traffic Management Systems (ATMS), and how its accurate and reliable Automatic Incident Detection (AID) feature offers opportunities for safer, smarter roads in Canada.

Watch the Stinson ITS Webinar

About Stinson ITS on safer, smarter roads in Canada

Stinson are leaders in traffic safety products and services industry. They are a Manufacturer, Distributor and System Integrator of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) with a focus on providing Turnkey Solutions. As a result, they have a solid reputation for focusing on innovation. Most importantly, their focus is providing innovative ITS solutions and exceptional products, to nurture strong client and partner relationships 

With a diverse and talented team, they have the expertise to assist with every aspect of a project. Stinson ITS is involved from early design consultations to implementation to long term operation and maintenance. Therefore, Stinson ITS continues to build on its long history of accelerating the integration of ITS in Cities, Towns and Communities across Canada.

Webinar Q&A

Questions answered by Phil Avery, Founder and Managing Director and Navtech Radar.

Can the radar be powered using a solar panel? What options are available for powering the radar unit?

At present, there is no solar powered option available for this radar however this can be a very useful addition to the unit, especially in locations that have an abundance of sunlight. Depending on the 3rd party involved they could provide this option, with the requirement of supporting the power requirements of the radar, which is 24 volts DC.

In your model of 10 sensors (found on slide) along the road in the UK - does the system track the vehicle from radar to radar as it travels the system or is this just showing activity in each 100 meter section but not interrelated to the vehicle itself in each section rather just the volume of traffic in each section. 

For the purposes of tracking live traffic, the system tracks on a per radar basis.

Therefore, the same track of a live vehicle will be maintained in the detection area of each radar. As the vehicle travels through and overlaps between detection areas of subsequent radars, a new track is created for the same vehicle.

Stopped vehicle however and other Automatic Incident Detection (AID) functions are largely independent of this and can be detected/reported dependent on customer needs. For example for stopped vehicles, we are able to report it’s exact location in terms of lat/long, x and y (in reference to our User Interface), or on a per section basis. The latter involves dividing the road or carriageway in our software into equal 100m sections, where the stopped vehicle can be reported on that basis. Again, this is largely customer driven.

What height is the radar mounted from the ground?

We generally say that our optimum radar performance comes when it is mounted 4.5-5.5m from the ground. This is not to say we cannot do any other height however.

If the bridge structure has no sufficient shoulder and maintenance activity requires lane closure to perform.  How long does the maintenance activity usually require?

There is no regular cleaning or other preventative maintenance required for the sensors so they would be quite well suited to these conditions.  Once every 5 years we need to perform a motor belt assembly change, that takes approximately 30-45 minutes each so with the set up and tear down of a lane closure you’re looking at a 4-6 hour lane closure to complete them for 2-4 sensors. 

We have a question pertaining to the radar performance in the high wind environment, such as at high elevation, long span bridges. Do you have any other references, where the radar was used in similar environment?

Yes, currently conducting trials on bridge structures, which are of course susceptible to high wind loads. 

There are two concerns with high wind environments – mechanically (need a bracket structure strong enough to withstand the design wind loads that might be encountered), and performance wise.

In relation to performance, we recommend that the system be designed as to the following constraint - torsional stiffness of the bracket so as to limit movement less than 0.5 degrees in any axis. For pole mounted radars, the constraint is to ensure that the wind loads do not cause more than 10mm of movement.

The radar data will not be affected by this, this is just to ensure optimum performance according to our standards. In the event of high winds, it may lead to a mismatch between our clutter floor image and our radar raw data, and hence leading to performance uncertainties.

Can you monitor both roadways and other areas surrounding the road both on land and water?

Yes we can do that, with our main concern being line of sight, and the scope of detection – i.e. what we are trying to detect. Therefore, when considering areas such as forests, line of sight can sometimes be an issue with surrounding trees. Also on water, we are able to do so, but it would require a good understanding of the specifications of detection.

Use cases could be in tunnel, areas with low cellular network coverage, could Satellite communication be an option?

As mentioned during the webinar, the radars generate high resolution radar images, which results in high volume data communications with the edge processing servers in the field. Therefore, we prefer to utilize fiber optic or ethernet communications between the sensors and the edge processing servers. The alarms generated by the edge processing servers can then be used by a 3rd party system to communicate with the outside world using a cellular network or satellite communication link.

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