Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Method Uses 'Bluetooth' To Track Travel Time For Vehicles, Pedestrians

Date:
May 28, 2008
Source:
Purdue University
Summary:
Engineers have created a method that uses pervasive Bluetooth signals from cell phones and other wireless devices to constantly update how long it takes vehicles and pedestrians to travel from one point to another. The method envisioned by engineers represents a potentially low-cost leap in technology to provide information for everything from the speed of the morning commute to the sluggishness of airport security lines.

Engineers have created a method that uses pervasive Bluetooth signals from cell phones and other wireless devices to constantly update how long it takes vehicles and pedestrians to travel from one point to another.

Related Articles


The method envisioned by engineers at the Indiana Department of Transportation represents a potentially low-cost leap in technology to provide information for everything from the speed of the morning commute to the sluggishness of airport security lines.

"This is incredibly valuable information that could be used for many purposes, including better traffic signal timing and management of construction work zones to reduce congestion, as well as real-time traffic information for motorists," said Darcy Bullock, a professor of civil engineering at Purdue University. "Now we have a way to measure how slow traffic is on a given stretch of road or how long it's taking people to get through airport security at a given concourse and time of day."

Bullock is developing the method with Jason S. Wasson and James R. Sturdevant, engineers from the Indiana Department of Transportation.

"We came up with the idea at INDOT and developed the prototype this year from off-the-shelf hardware," Wasson said.

The method picks up the identifying "addresses" from Bluetooth devices in consumer electronics. Because each device has its own distinct digital signature, its travel time can be tracked by detectors installed at intersections or along highways and other locations.

Travelers could access the travel-time information using the same portable electronic devices that make the system possible.

"Information is a commodity people are aggressively seeking, and this method promises to cost effectively provide information that has never been widely available to travelers," Bullock said.

Research findings will be detailed in a paper appearing in the June issue of the ITE Journal, published by the Institute of Transportation Engineers. The paper was written by Wasson, Sturdevant and Bullock.

Bluetooth technology connects and exchanges information for cell phone hands-free headsets, wireless keyboards, Internet access for personal digital assistants, and wireless networks for laptops and personal computers. The new travel-time estimation procedures detect and record "media access control," or MAC identification signals, every time a Bluetooth device passes a detector.

"It gives you quantitative 24-hour feedback on traffic flow, information we can use for design and operation decisions," Wasson said. "Agencies need quantitative data so they can make informed decisions about how to allocate resources and how well design changes are working."

Data from such a system would provide not only information about short-term factors such as congestion from construction work zones, but also long-term trends requiring design changes, Sturdevant said.

The researchers tested the method on sections of Interstate 65, Interstate 465 and roads in and around Indianapolis, tracking 1.2 percent of the average daily traffic on specific routes.

"That's important because it means basically every hundredth vehicle is tracked, so the travel-time information is accurate and updated," Bullock said. "With improved antenna mounting we expect to do even better."

Pedestrian walking speeds also could be tracked to learn how long it takes people to negotiate airports and other facilities.

Future work may involve expanding the research to additional sections of roadways. The researchers have filed a patent on the method, and the basic technology is available commercially to create the tracking system, Bullock said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Purdue University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Purdue University. "Method Uses 'Bluetooth' To Track Travel Time For Vehicles, Pedestrians." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 May 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080527155459.htm>.
Purdue University. (2008, May 28). Method Uses 'Bluetooth' To Track Travel Time For Vehicles, Pedestrians. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080527155459.htm
Purdue University. "Method Uses 'Bluetooth' To Track Travel Time For Vehicles, Pedestrians." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080527155459.htm (accessed November 28, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Friday, November 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

NASA's First 3-D Printer In Space Creates Its First Object

NASA's First 3-D Printer In Space Creates Its First Object

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) The International Space Station is now using a proof-of-concept 3D printer to test additive printing in a weightless, isolated environment. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bolivian Recycling Initiative Turns Plastic Waste Into School Furniture

Bolivian Recycling Initiative Turns Plastic Waste Into School Furniture

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) Innovative recycling project in La Paz separates city waste and converts plastic garbage into school furniture made from 'plastiwood'. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Blu-Ray Discs Getting Second Run As Solar Panels

Blu-Ray Discs Getting Second Run As Solar Panels

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) Researchers at Northwestern University are repurposing Blu-ray movies for better solar panel technology thanks to the discs' internal structures. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins