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SCATS® was designed from the outset to make the most use of the road resources it is responsible to manage. It is a fully adaptive urban traffic control system that literally tunes out wasted time at each and every intersection.
The developers of this product are also its biggest user, the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) of NSW in Australia use SCATS® to control over 4000 intersections mostly in Sydney but also in rural cities state wide. New South Wales is an Australian state with a population of 5 million people.
A fixed time system essentially "builds-in" inefficient time that is often not needed such as pedestrian crossing time when there are no pedestrians - those systems are not sophisticated enough to react. A similar scenario would be diamond turns movements being turned on where there are no vehicles turning.
SCATS® and SCATS® Compliant traffic signal controllers communicate with each other such that SCATS® "sees" where the demands are coming from and with the controller are given green time, but if there are no demands say from pedestrians or turning vehicles for diamond turns then SCATS® and the Traffic Signal Controllers "skip" the unneeded time and allocate it to those movements where it is needed.
SCATS® adaptive control algorithms process data from each intersection's Traffic Signal Controller and in turn starts to form a picture across a number of intersections along a given road corridor of which way the "traffic is flowing".
It does this via vehicle detector loops embedded in the road surface at the stop bar for each approach at an intersection. For information about Vehicle Detector Loops please click on the link below.
Vehicle Detector Loops for SCATS®
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