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Intelligent Transport Systems: Building the future of mobility

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Dattatreya Gaur, President, Robert Bosch Engineering and Business SolutionsA student of IIM, Bangalore, Dattatreya, has expertise in wide range of domains including product engineering and development and has also assisted many organizations in reaching greater heights

Transportation has been a boon for the human civilization for centuries. Its various forms have also been a clear indicator of humanity's progress over the years as transportation has evolved from the wheel to the myriad advanced modes that we see today. However, it does n't end here. The transportation sector is also judged by innovation, feasibility, speed, access and other such variables that determine the effects that it has on our lives as humanities'subsistence and progress rest on its shoulders.

Like several inventions before and after it, transportation has its pros and it also brings with itself a certain set of cons. Traffic congestion and road accidents are some issues that have cost many lives and time wastages for decades, and their numbers do not seem to be dwindling anytime soon. According to a report published by the Indian Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, the number of road accidents has only dropped by three percent and fatalities have only dropped by 4.75 percent between January and July 2017. India has an estimated 5.4 million kilometers of roads, so the possibility of traffic congestion in the country often leads to massive economic losses by making road commutes even harder to work around. This is one of the primal reasons behind the inception of intelligent transport systems worldwide. Given that there are often multiple reasons that are the culprits behind traffic congestion worldwide, aiming to resolve such issues through intelligent transport systems can potentially increase the efficacy, infrastructure, reduce travel time, curb air pollution and control fuel consumption.

But what exactly does an intelligent transport system entail?
An Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) is an application which involves the integration of information technology and transportation systems to provide efficient and safer mobility services. Given the amount of traffic congestion that regularly strangles Indian
cities ride hailing apps often seem like better alternatives to make it easier for the public to move around and reduce the traffic burden on the roads. Besides, it is also a cost effective solution for the government to invest in as it can have a tremendous long term impact on the automotive industry. This is just one aspect of intelligent transport systems that are making lives better. The initiation of the Smart Cities project by the Government of India will also ensure that transportation in the country is better equipped to meet the needs and demands of motorists from various cities through the use of connected technology.

Since connected servicesand technologies have already begun and are going to continue to define our lives in the future, ITS will play a vital role to define how we will run our daily lives


The purpose of such a system is to ease the effects of transportation on the environment and on people's lives. The multi modal aspect of intelligent transportation helps to keep a check on myriad facets of transport such as infrastructure, connected devices, safety issues and more. This, in turn, helps in providing a one stop solution for transport companies to monitor thousands of connected vehicles with the help of IoT, GPS and Wi-Fi enabled devices that are used in the framework. Furthermore, the infusion of connected technologies helps in managing the traffic congestion and flow whilst rerouting the public to alternative routes to save money, time and lives. ITS usually consists of an integrated amalgamation of hardware and software which is connected to the driver's console to provide realtime insights and updates with regards to vehicle tracking systems and passenger information systems.

As far as the workforce involved in the system is concerned, ITS makes it easier for them to collect and analyze data that ensures efficient delivery and performance. The data also gives them a sense of reassurance that the mechanisms are well suited and can be adapted to any major unforeseen changes that may occur in the future. Since ITS amplifies the operators'abilities to dynamically gauge and respond to traffic incidents and other occurrences in realtime it carries several benefits.

Globally, ITS represents a significant transition from traditional transport by adopting technology that enables connected mobility. Keeping such benefits in mind, Bosch has developed an Intelligent Transport Management System (iTrams) an app that is designed specifically for fleet operators and Original Equipment Manufacturers(OEMs) to manage their vehicles efficiently. This unified app works across various vehicle platforms such as commercial vehicles, passenger cars, two wheelers and more. It also provides integrated data analytics to enable higher efficiency and offer deeper insights into vehicle performance, diagnostics, and driving behavior. For example, autonomous cars can aid motorists by directing them towards better alternative routes, which can, in turn, reduce traffic congestion in the area save time and cut costs. By doing so, another benefit is that parking spaces can be reclaimed. Technically speaking, the comparatively compact and environmentally friendly power trains in autonomous cars also provide an added benefit to their myriad advantages. Since connected services and technologies have already begun and are going to continue to define our lives in the future, ITS will play a vital role to define how we will run our daily lives. Needless to say, this scenario will be far more advanced and efficient than the one in which we do things today.