• smart city

Optimization of road salt usage with sensors

Using data analysis is promising for major cities to optimize the local transportation system, traffic or parking slots. Another aspect, where cities have a high potential for using data is weather management.

Why does a municipality care about the weather? Especially in the cold winter months, monitoring the weather is an important task: Clearing the streets from snow and salting before ice appears is essential as not only snow ties up the traffic but also the risk of serious road accidents rises drastically. The application of salt is both necessary and cost-effective and optimizing the amount of salt can reduce costs drastically.

Challenges

Weather reporting is an important source of information for the local authority and municipality. National and regional weather forecasts are the basis of decision-making. Although also minor areas are tracked, local influence factors, e.g. a nearby lake, forest or hill, highly influence the occurring local weather phenomenon and obviously icing behaviour of a certain road are not taken into account. But as certain weather phenomenon, black ice, for example, appears often locally exact direct measurements in the field are needed to foreknow risk and to take necessary precaution. Black ice is extremely dangerous: When fog or rain hits cold roads, a thin but encompassing ice layer can appear. The name black ice refers to the fact that it is practically invisible for drivers or people stepping on it. Thus, the risk of losing grip and starting sliding and there out the risk of accidents rises immensely.

It is important to take action on time but also optimization helps to reduce material costs as the amount of salt is adapted to the current local needs on streets and roads.

Solution

Continuous monitoring of local weather conditions with sensors enables insights into real-time temperature development on place-specific roads. Albertslund Municipality gets local data from the relevant streets and roads using Orbit K sensors.

The sensors are monitoring climate conditions in real-time. Thereby, the necessary action can be optimized as the system notifies when temperature deviates from a predefined value. If too much salt is used, it is mainly a cost factor for the municipality, and using too much salt can further have a negative influence on trees, paint damages at cars and pets’ paws.

With the use of sensors, the amount of salt used is optimized and oversalting is prevented to reduce cost and unnecessary negative impact. Using the Orbit K sensors the efficiency is enhanced, costs are reduced and constant and accurate data is provided. This leads to better decisions based on data-driven insights and facts to take necessary actions.

Benefits

  • Optimize material consumption of salt
  • Enhance national weather forecast with local data
  • Steady monitoring & automated documentation
  • Receive real-time data about place-specific weather conditions
  • Accessible from PC, tablet or smartphone, also from distance
  • Early warning system

 

Source: På jagt efter den perfekte dosering [Time: 11:56-14:20] (Danish)