Siemens to start first on-street trials of its Plus+ traffic control system


Siemens Mobility’s UK division has announced that the first installation of its Plus+ traffic control system will take place in the town of Poole, Dorset, ready for comprehensive on-street trials with Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Council to begin in July.

Siemens’ third-generation traffic control system has been developed to deliver on-street resilience and reliability, as well as fast and cost-effective installation for both new schemes and major refurbishment projects. Plus+ uses distributed intelligence with simple power and data cabling to increase intersection availability and reduce overall installation and maintenance costs. By drastically reducing the raw materials, cabling and people-power required compared to traditional systems, Plus+ supports minimized disruption during installation and optimized traffic flow on the UK’s increasingly congested road network.

Plus+ has been designed with dedicated failsafe signal heads and pedestrian indicators, as well as new smart loop modules to make sure that the overall system is tolerant of individual component and cable damage. This results in higher intersection availability and most significantly, reduced disruption to road users. The modular Plus+ system is based on the proven ST950 controller platform and remains fully compatible with other key traffic control solutions such as above ground detectors, standard loop detectors, and the company’s battery-powered sub-surface WiMag wireless magnetometer sensors, if required.

The new ST950 Plus+ system no longer uses many of the individual connections between signal heads and controllers; instead it uses simple four-core cables and intelligent communications to reduce the installation effort, as well as saving valuable resources. In addition to the advantages coming from the quicker and safer installation and the robust nature of the design, the Plus+ system also includes enhanced ‘self-checking’ and diagnostics which provides additional protection against false signals being shown on-street due to error or deliberate acts. If damage does occur to the traffic signals or controller, individual nodes can be ‘hot-swapped’, typically allowing maintenance to be undertaken while the traffic signals remain switched on.

The Plus+ system uses an ELV (extra-low voltage) 48V DC power supply on-street, with inbuilt passive safety options and secure data communications, to provide the highest levels of safety and availability, eliminating electric shock risks both for engineers and the public, whilst maintaining compatibility with many of the successful ST950 family’s components. To help simplify the design process, an AutoCAD plug-in works alongside normal site layout drawing tools to capture full information about a junction’s characteristics and component relationships.

“Since first previewing Plus+ at Traffex over two years ago, our engineers have now developed the most advanced and cost-effective solution for resilient traffic intersections,” commented Wilke Reints, managing director of intelligent transportation systems (ITS) at Siemens Mobility Limited. “With digitalization, we are enabling mobility operators worldwide to make their infrastructure and networks intelligent and ultimately, to deliver an enhanced experience for road users and city dwellers.”

Martin Baker, road safety and network manager at BCP Council, said, “We are very happy to support Siemens Mobility in trialing this latest exciting technology. We see the Plus+ system as a valuable addition to the portfolio of solutions we can use, helping us deliver new schemes more efficiently and with less disruption to the travelling public.”

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Adam joined the company in 1994, and has been News Editor of TTT since 2009. In his other role as Circulation Manager, he helped create the original Traffic Technology International distribution list 23 years ago, and has been working on it ever since. Outside of work, he is a keen fisherman, runs a drumming band, and plays an ancient version of cricket.