A 2020 Vision of the Future - Highways Agency

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A 2020 Vision of the Future - Highways Agency Powered By Docstoc
					                                Enterprise Architecture:

                               A 2020 Vision of the future




Prepared by the

Enterprise Architecture Team

November 2008
Glossary
                 st
21CN           21 Century Network
                rd
3G             3 Generation (Mobile Network)
BI             Business Intelligence
CCRF           Common Control Room Framework
CIB            Corporate Integration Backbone
CORBA          Common Object Request Broker Architecture
CTI            Computer Telephony Integration
DfT            Department for Transport
EA             Enterprise Architecture
EDI            Electronic Data Interchange
ESB            Enterprise Service Bus
HA             Highways Agency
HAZMAT         Hazardous Materials
ICE            Integration Centre of Excellence
IP             Internet Protocol
ISP            Information Service Provider
ITS            Intelligent Transport System
NSN            National State of the Network
NRTS           National Roads Telecommunications Services
NTCC           National Traffic Control Centre
RCC            Regional Control Centre
SatNav         Satellite Navigation
SNA            Strategic Network Architecture
SNMP           Simple Network Management Protocol
SOA            Service-Oriented Architecture
TIH            Travel Information Highway
TMC            Traffic Management Centre
UNM            Unified Network Model
UTMC           Urban Traffic Management and Control
UOI            Unified Operator Interface
VII            Vehicle Infrastructure Integration
VNS            Virtual Network Services
WiMAX          Worldwide interoperability for Microwave Access
XML            eXtensible Markup Language




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2020 Vision
We are now well into the 21st Century - the year is 2020. Since 2009, the Highways Agency (HA) has
developed and implemented a Strategic Network Architecture (SNA) which extended the Travel
Information Highway (TIH) into the realms of command and control. As such, the HA has taken a leading
role in the development of the UK‟s multi-modal Intelligent Transport System (ITS) in collaboration with
colleagues from the DfT, partners and supply chain. The result was a ubiquitous deployment and
integration of robust, virtualised and sustainable information services that have transformed highway
transportation, forming a solid foundation with which to realise the Vision 2030 [1]. This in turn has
resulted in the proliferation of improved traffic management techniques, network utilisation, predictable
journey times, driver aids and road safety.

To receive the new services, more than two-thirds of the vehicles on the road today have at least basic
on-board ITS instrumentation that provides real-time access to the Travel Information Highway (TIH).
The availability of information, though, is only one piece of the bigger picture. Through associated
automotive technology innovation, drivers also benefit from intelligent (adaptive) cruise control, lane
keeping assist, and other safety and convenience enhancements. Fully automated highway operation is
even possible now.

The overall SNA deployment by the HA and its partners has now reached the full implementation
envisioned in the Enterprise Architecture (EA) developed back in 2008. The EA was a key enabler to
realising the integrated systems that we enjoy today providing travellers with a world class service.
Building upon the framework provided by the EA, standards, communications, and data format
commonality have been defined and maintained throughout each of the phased deployments. The
original plan for a Unified Network Model (UNM) and National State of the Network (NSN) is now a
reality. Coupled with a Common Control Room Framework (CCRF), Unified Operator Interface (UOI),
Corporate Integration Backbone (CIB) and Virtual Network Services (VNS) this has facilitated
coordination and planning across geographical and organisational boundaries, including national,
regional and local bodies using shared, distributed data. In turn, this has facilitated the development of
new effective strategies to tackle traffic congestion, highway maintenance, transportation security,
vehicle routing, regional pollution, and a host of other issues. Customers have reaped the benefits of
these solutions as they utilise the seamless travel services provided across the nation. The EA
framework and roadmap showed what needed to be done and the Service Providers have now made it
a reality.

The EA common services strategy clearly spelled out the pivotal importance of communications to 21st
century transportation. No technology has taken a greater role in defining the transportation systems of
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2020 than the revolution in data communications, notably with network (IP) convergence and BT‟s 21
Century Network (21CN). Just as the nature of day-to-day life has been affected at home and in
business by ubiquitous and inexpensive data communications, so also has the experience of travel, from
the response to emergencies to bank holiday leisure breaks. People no longer arrive in traffic queues
unaware of the prevailing conditions. They now have the decision support information that enables them
to switch to public transport or follow alternate routes to avoid congestion and the use of multiple
transport modes for a journey is no longer an inconvenient or confusing option. Reduced uncertainty has
made making travel plans a more pleasant experience for all.
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How has this developed? Through a combination of infrastructure and information services, provided
through a successful partnership between both public and private sectors. The infrastructure is used
primarily to support the communication of real-time data. This has, in turn, enabled services that provide
useful information to travellers to help them make informed travel decisions.

Travellers now receive a level of transportation service only barely imaginable 10 or 12 years ago. New
commercial ventures, in the form of “Information Service Providers”, or ISP‟s, have been built upon the
early public sector foundations of the ITS. These ISP‟s provide their value-added services, by collecting
data from various sources, like the Travel Information Highway (TIH) and creating valuable information
products and services that consumers now see as just as necessary as their Digital TV, Personal
Computer, and mobile phone. ISP‟s have arisen in many markets: some run the general
communications infrastructure, some serve the personal needs of the travelling public, and some serve
special markets like freight operators.

The reality of the national ITS effort is that there is now nearly total coverage of urban and inter-urban
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areas by Traffic Management Centres (TMC‟s), road sensors, vehicle probes, and appropriate TMC
coverage for rural regions. Working cooperatively with the TMC‟s is a constellation of public and private
ISP‟s who offer urban, inter-urban, and rural travellers the full range of transportation information
services. In many areas, TMC‟s also cooperate seamlessly with other management centres that provide
specialised functions such as incidents and emergencies, maintenance and construction, CO2 emission
or weather condition monitoring.

For personal travel, each ISP travel customer has a User Profile that comprises characteristics of both
the user and the vehicles they drive. The following shows an example of such a profile for a private
vehicle traveller:

      • On board instrumentation:
             o On-board trip computer
             o On-board databases (e.g. SatNav digitised maps, location-based service information)
             o Communication capability (e.g. hands-free voice; 3G or WiMAX data)
             o User interfaces, (e.g. voice, display)
             o Vehicle intelligence on-board (e.g. adaptive cruise control)
             o Telematics capabilities (e.g. pay-as-you-drive insurance)
      • Personal characteristics:
             o Regular travel destinations
             o Route type preference (e.g. motorways versus „A‟ roads)
             o Preferred user interfaces
             o Information needs
             o Pay-for-service subscriptions (e.g. M6 Toll Tag Account)

Before setting out on a journey, users may enter modifiers to their profile, then plan their journey aided
by recommendations from the ISP. This information maybe available at home, in the office, on public
kiosks, mobile phones, or on-board the vehicle. If required, some ISP services can even employ social
networking‟s collaboration capabilities to facilitate car-sharing through online communities on their

1
    TMC’s include the NTCC and RCC’s within the Agency and external centres in urban areas and other EU countries.

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Internet portals. This has become more commonplace with the introduction of High Occupancy Vehicle
(HOV) lanes on urban motorways in Cambridgeshire and Greater Manchester.

The EA roadmap which defined the Strategic Network Architecture (SNA) implementation has led to the
long-term deployment of a coordinated road transportation system. Planners and implementers have
followed this guidance, producing the great gains enjoyed today in 2020. In subsequent sections, we‟ll
cover a few specific areas where the SNA has delivered on its promise.

Communications

The developments in mobile wireless devices and data communications have been, in many ways, the
key enabling technology in SNA for HA staff, partners and the travelling public (i.e. customers). Many of
the SNA gains, though significant, are incremental in nature and not obvious to the average consumer.
However, the availability of personal wireless data services has resulted in a true revolution. For the
individual traveller, hand-held and in-vehicle devices now support a myriad of traveller information
services throughout the entire country and beyond into Europe. The vast majority of travellers have
access to these services using equipment that works with both Mobile networks (3G and WiMAX) and
Satellite Navigation (SatNav) systems to ensure that traveller services are available everywhere at all
times.

Though the traveller mass market has embraced the mobile and SatNav-based data standards, other
markets exist in specialised standards that are particularly appropriate to certain situations. Short range
wireless communications, typically using GHz frequency radio transmissions, are in widespread use for
dedicated short-range communications needs. These systems support electronic toll collection,
commercial vehicle clearance, and parking payment. The short range wireless communications are also
being used to support a variety of Vehicle Infrastructure Integration (VII) applications including advisory
messages, in-vehicle signing, and probe information collection. In some areas the short range wireless
systems now supplement visual hazard warning signs, providing the warning information directly to the
vehicle‟s information system for visual and/or audible driver alerts.

The National Roads Telecommunications Services 2 (NRTS2) transmission network has been enhanced
to support all of the value-added services we now see today. Many of these services are now mission
critical, particularly those related to safety, and the NRTS2 network has been upgraded accordingly.
Today, it‟s fully resilient with dual connections, via fibre cable and/or microwave radio, to each of the
TMC‟s. This ensures full business continuity, with the TMC‟s all operating together as one virtual centre
allowing resources to be diverted whenever there is a major incident either on the road network or at a
TMC location.

The role of NRTS2 has also expanded and is now a fully converged IP private network supporting all of
the HA‟s operational and business needs in a single integrated communications system. This uses the
same standards, technology and architecture as Airwave (Tetra) and BT‟s 21CN (Ethernet and IP) which
transparently extends the HA network outwardly to external partners and customers in a totally
integrated manner. The transfer of intra-Agency communications from the BT public network across to
the HA‟s own private network has reduced costs significantly, making the transition self-financing. Voice
calls can easily be transferred along with any associated data utilising Computer Telephony Integration
(CTI) to relay information onto screens using the Unified Operator Interface (UOI). This provides a
seamless flow of information which is critical to timely incident management workflows and operator
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productivity – operator‟s time is better utilised freeing them up from reacting to situations and re-keying
data to more useful, proactive tasks.

Today, the HA network is fully compliant with modern standards, notably those set out for Urban Traffic
Management and Control (UTMC), which, in turn, utilise global Internet standards such as SNMP and
XML. This enables the Agency to exchange data easily with other UTMC-compliant systems, even across
organisational and geographical boundaries that previously represented barriers between “islands of
information”. Thus, we can now achieve operational flexibility and seamless communications between
local, regional, national and international operators including those of the emergency services as well as
transport.

But the communications revolution is not only driving real-time services. The tremendous integration,
brought about by the SNA within the Agency and more widely by the ITS, has created an enormous
distributed data resource. The HA, like many others, now summarise and archive huge amounts of data
from every corner of their transportation network. Sophisticated data analyses are run against this data,
producing planning models and annual reports with unprecedented accuracy and efficiency. The Agency
now has well over a decade of archived data to draw upon - the initial investment require to create these
extensive repositories has been repaid many times over. The significant percentage of vehicles that now
provide probe data has created a wealth of traffic surveillance information for real-time traffic
management. Probe data is received through VII instrumented intersections. ISP‟s now provide full
enroute guidance services to subscribing travellers. The probe data that the ISP‟s receive from their
subscribers is summarised and sent to the TMC‟s, which keep track of the travel times on all the links in
their network. This information is used to optimise the scheduling of traffic controls. The ISP‟s benefit, in
return, by receiving the TMC traffic and network status information, as well as scheduling priorities from
the TMC‟s, where possible, for their customers‟ vehicles. This tight coordination is made possible by
affordable high-speed data communications. The plethora of available data has also required significant
automation of TMC systems. Data fusion, expert systems, model-based reasoning, and a host of other
technologies are employed here. The goal has been to reduce operator workload while substantially
improving the accuracy of dynamic traffic information. At the same time, improved fault detection has
reduced the operations and maintenance costs of these complex systems.

In addition to traffic management, the maintenance of existing infrastructure has benefited immensely
from both ITS technologies and the ability to share data between centres. Maintenance fleets are
tracked, their conditions monitored, and their operations for both winter and non-winter activities are
coordinated to provide efficient highway management. Maintenance organisations have been monitoring
weather and road conditions for over 20 years, but advances in technology and data collection now
allow development of weather and road condition models for individual road network links. Using this
information and advanced decision support tools, the maintenance organisation can provide the right
treatment in the shortest time to each road segment. This has resulted in both safer roads and fewer
road/lane closures. Weather and road condition information is widely distributed to ISP‟s, TMC‟s, and
Emergency Centres providing real-time conditions to travellers and operations centres. Roadwork
operations are coordinated beforehand with affected centres (e.g. TMC‟s), information about roadwork
operations and road/lane closures are shared with all key transportation centres. In addition, sensing
and alerting technologies, such as vehicle intrusion warning devices, are now commonplace in roadwork
and construction areas, significantly reducing the risk to maintenance crews working near major traffic
flows.


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Integration

All of this has been achieved by a concerted effort, through the EA and SNA initiatives, to develop
systems into a modern, integrated modular and sustainable event-driven, Service-Oriented Architecture
(SOA) that fully met the long-term needs of customers, staff and partners and then embedding these
into the Agency‟s “DNA”. This was accompanied by a change in the Agency‟s procurement approach
from one of acquiring technology (hardware and software) to one of acquiring managed services.

This could only be realised by the introduction of industry standards and best practices embracing e-
GIF, UTMC, DATEX2 and TIH principles, for example. This was accompanied by a step change away
from ad hoc systems design and deployment to a fully coordinated approach with total EA alignment
which, in turn ensured that technology was only deployed where it was fully aligned with the Agency‟s
business drivers and resulting capabilities. As well as providing the glue between Agency systems, there
was a concerted effort to develop services within the context of a national Integrated Transport System
(ITS).

A Systems Integrator was appointed by the HA in 2009 and their immediate task was to implement an
Enterprise Service Bus (ESB), as specified by the EA Blueprint, followed immediately by the
establishment of an Integration Centre of Excellence (ICE) to support each of the strategic programmes.
This infrastructure, commonly known as the Corporate Integration Backbone (CIB), was vital to
implementing the HA‟s capabilities and underpinning business services. This achieved the loose
coupling and high cohesion demanded by a business undergoing such a major transformation as the
HA.

Legacy systems were accommodated through the use of adapters acting as “Service Facades” – an
approach sometimes referred to as “Encapsulation”. The ESB complemented the NRTS2
communications network to provide the integration layer known as the Corporate Integration Backbone
(CIB). This, largely message-based system, not only “glued” together separate HA systems but also
provided the basis of external B2B gateways to ITS-based and other systems, including TIH. The first of
these to be deployed was a CORBA interface.

This integration layer also provided the Extract, Transform and Load (ETL) required by the HA‟s
Business Intelligence (BI) Programme.

Commercial Vehicles and Freight

The freight handling industry serves many critical needs of the UK economy. Commercial vehicle
operators are now inextricably linked with water, air and rail freight transportation modes. Using many of
the core ITS technologies, tight interaction has evolved for intermodal freight. The HA‟s ITS-based
infrastructure has provided enablers for much of the highway portion. The overall result has been a
steady progression of increasing efficiency in freight operations essential to the success of UK PLC.

Commercial highway vehicles have become technologically more sophisticated. Safety innovations
developed for passenger cars have been adapted and evolved for use in trucks, extending the concept
of the age old tachograph. Anti-lock braking systems (ABS) are now universal on tractors and trailers.
On-board monitoring of brake conditions is now possible, along with other critical safety measurements
such as collision detection. Some technology innovations have been added to improve the security of
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commercial vehicles and their cargo.

Commercial shipments are not only tracked by the fleet manager, but their locations are constantly
compared to planned routes so that any significantly off- route vehicles can be identified by the fleet
manager and the appropriate public safety agencies notified. Similarly, drivers may need to identify
themselves to equipment in the vehicle with some combination of ID cards, Personal Identification
Numbers (PIN codes) or even in some cases biometrics. If an unknown driver tries to operate the
vehicle, then the fleet manager can be notified and the vehicle immobilised. This is a particularly
important for the shipment of security sensitive hazardous materials (HAZMAT) that might be targeted
for hijacking. Security features within the freight containers and the commercial vehicles themselves
allow the identification of illegal tampering. Through sophisticated communications, both the drivers and
the fleet operations centres can monitor these systems. The roadside regulatory and safety enforcement
infrastructure for trucking has also changed. Truck weight can be measured at mainline speeds by both
roadside checking stations and properly equipped mobile inspectors. Dynamometer technology allows
quick brake performance assessments. Electronic logs have allowed non-stop safety enforcement
evaluations for participating carriers that have appropriately equipped their vehicles.

The biggest roadside change has been the adoption of uniform Electronic Data Interchange (EDI).
Earlier EDI protocols (based on ANSI X.12 and EDIFACT standards) have been superseded by
eXtensible Markup Language (XML) based protocols to provide all aspects of commercial and
regulatory data and monetary transactions. Integration with Supply Chain and ERP systems along with
international toll collection systems has helped to create a seamless commercial vehicle network that
extends across Europe.

Route plans, required regulatory clearances, fuel and registration fee payments, and all other record
keeping and financial transactions are now provided electronically from fleet management centres, or
contracted ISPs, to the appropriate roadside stations and to government agencies, as needed. Carriers
choose to participate because it makes business sense for them, producing considerable savings and
Return on Investment (ROI).

As national, regional and local government agencies and industry have all embraced these standards, it
has become possible to have “one-stop” credential shopping on a national scale. A nationwide network
of administrative systems supports the necessary electronic data gathering and exchange. This has
created a great increase in the efficiency of commercial vehicle regulation, as essentially seamless
commercial vehicle travel throughout the EU has become commonplace. The carriers and regulators
alike have applauded the results: lower costs for both enforcement and compliance, as well as fairer,
more uniform, and more effective regulation and enforcement. The biggest winners, however, are the
freight customers. Their cargo now travels with fewer stops and delays, arriving sooner and with greater
certainty.

Demand Management

Over the last few decades, consumer choice, environmental concerns, and technological innovations
have all impacted the very nature of transportation. Personal vehicles may now be electric, petrol,
diesel, LPG or bio-fuelled. Hybrid vehicles are widely in use today. This fact, coupled with the contention
for highway space between personal, commercial, and public transport vehicles, has led to fundamental
re-evaluations of how road infrastructures should be financed. The result is that some agencies have
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decided to try completely new transportation pricing strategies. The underlying assumption is that all
transportation, from highway use to air travel, represents services with costs. These costs should be
paid fairly and directly by the individual beneficiaries of these services.

These demand management strategies are being employed by local departments of transportation to
help meet highway capacity and CO2 emission goals. The HA‟s SNA provided an early identification of
the systems and technologies that would be needed to address ever-expanding transportation network
demands such as these. Demand management technology is a cornerstone of this critical tool set and
formed the basis for delivery of the HA‟s Managed Motorways Programme.

SNA‟s highway usage data was an enabler for a road user pricing strategy which in turn has fed the
DfT‟s multi-modal transportation pricing strategies. Similarly, routing information provided to the TMC‟s
has facilitated the implementation of sophisticated demand management policies. The TMC‟s can now
use historical, projected, and measured data to make pricing decisions for system usage. Travellers can
use pricing as a factor in their travel planning, routing decisions, and even in car sharing agreements.

While demand management strategies are most visible in their impact on the daily driver, broader
activities are also occurring. The revolution in data gathering and dissemination has allowed long term
planning to dovetail effectively with day-to-day operations.

Incident Management

Incident management and emergency services are related areas that have benefited greatly by
advances in technology and in the deployment of infrastructure, particularly for communications. Many
people who would have died as a consequence of accidents 20 years ago are now saved. On
motorways response times have been cut in half or better, resulting in a >30% reduction in fatalities.
Just as important as responding to accidents is their prevention: public exposure to high-risk traffic
situations has been reduced through effective traffic management and remedial action.

Incident management has seen tremendous gains from improvements in coordination and automation.
Where 20 years ago the private caller on a mobile phone, or an Emergency Response Telephone
(ERT), was the most effective detection mechanism, now automated systems can detect and verify
incidents using probe data much more rapidly and at a lower cost than with loops or CCTV alone. In
critical, high usage corridors, the detection portion of the detect-and-verify process takes only a few tens
of seconds using probe data. Additionally, many vehicles are now equipped with emergency notification,
or “mayday”, systems that automatically transmit identity and location when a serious collision occurs or
a “panic button” (hazard warning) is activated, providing direct incident detection by the vehicles
involved.

Emergency services have seen the early experiments in signal pre-emption long since grow to maturity.
An emergency vehicle receives priority routing and signal scheduling to ensure both the fastest route to
the scene of the incident and the minimum danger to the public.

Control Centre dispatchers are advised of accident situations by automated mayday signalling and by
incident management systems. Automated Hazardous Material (HAZMAT) warnings are created for all
commercial vehicle HAZMAT carrier routes when fleet managers select and file them. Should a problem
arise, these warnings and any associated guidance is immediately made available to dispatchers and
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drivers. The improvements in the detection of emergencies and their response have saved many lives,
yielding one of ITS‟s biggest successes.

While ITS‟s have had a significant impact on the daily management of traffic incidents and other
emergencies, it also now plays a major role in supporting responses to disasters and in supporting
evacuations of areas that are or might be affected by disasters. ITS‟s provide enhanced access to the
scene for response personnel and resources, provide better information about the transportation system
in the vicinity of the disaster, and provide more efficient, safer evacuation for the general public if
needed.

The surveillance systems installed to monitor the transportation infrastructure also serve to provide early
identification of the scope and extent of a disaster which is critical in today‟s extreme climate conditions.
In addition the integration of TMC‟s allows the status of the infrastructure to be quickly shared among all
relevant agencies, thus assisting in the initial response to a disaster. Responding agencies can identify
what resources to send immediately, and can seek assistance as needed from adjacent areas and
regions. Maintenance organisations can obtain up to the minute status of the network, allowing them to
prioritise emergency repairs needed to get the network moving again after the disaster. Also, the
integrated travel information disseminated via TIH means that travellers can be informed of which roads
are open.

Managed Motorways

Over the course of the last decade, a number of systems have been introduced by the HA to reduce
congestion including:

         Mandatory variable speed limits
         Ramp metering (traffic light controlled access to motorways)
         HGV lanes
         High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes
         Tolled lanes
         High Occupancy vehicle or Tolled (HOT) lanes

These traffic management tools have been introduced in a coordinated fashion and have been fully
integrated based on the standards laid down by the HA‟s Enterprise Architecture.




References:

[1]       Vision 2030 [www.transportvisions.org.uk]
[2]       US DoT National ITS Architecture [www.its.dot.gov/arch/index.htm]




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