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sensors

Article
An Intelligent Parking Management System for
Urban Areas
Juan A. Vera-Gómez 1 , Alexis Quesada-Arencibia 2, *, Carmelo R. García 2 , Raúl Suárez Moreno 1
and Fernando Guerra Hernández 1
1 Edosoft Factory, S.L. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria 35011, Spain;
juan.vera@edosoft.es (J.A.V.-G.); raul.suarez@edosoft.es (R.S.M.); fernando.guerra@edosoft.es (F.G.H.)
2 Instituto Universitario de Ciencias y Tecnologías Cibernéticas, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria,
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria 35017, Spain; rgarcia@dis.ulpgc.es
* Correspondence: alexis.quesada@ulpgc.es; Tel.: +34-928-457-108

Academic Editor: Vittorio M. N. Passaro
Received: 28 April 2016; Accepted: 15 June 2016; Published: 21 June 2016
Abstract: In this article we describe a low-cost, minimally-intrusive system for the efficient
management of parking spaces on both public roads and controlled zones. This system is based on
wireless networks of photoelectric sensors that are deployed on the access roads into and out of these
areas. The sensors detect the passage of vehicles on these roads and communicate this information
to a data centre, thus making it possible to know the number of vehicles in the controlled zone and
the occupancy levels in real-time. This information may be communicated to drivers to facilitate
their search for a parking space and to authorities so that they may take steps to control traffic when
congestion is detected.

Keywords: intelligent transport systems; parking; wireless sensor network (WSN); traffic;
sensor; infrared

1. Introduction
Human mobility is a necessity in today’s world. It has a significant impact on both quality of life
and the economy of modern societies. Transport systems are, therefore, a key element in developed or
developing countries. Zhang [1], in his survey of Intelligent Transportation Systems, indicated that
40% of the world’s population spend at least one hour on the road every day. Of all the different modes
of transport, the one that is used on a massive scale is land transport by road. Such large-scale use of
this type of transport has led to congestion problems in densely populated metropolitan areas, with all
the concomitant negative consequences. According to Shawe-Taylor [2], these negative consequences
include pollution and its harmful effects on the environment and human health. Too much time on
the road means an increase in energy consumption, which has a negative impact on both individual
and national economies, as well as on the environment. Several medical studies [3] have confirmed
that road transport congestion results in a deterioration of public health because it increases the risk of
heart and respiratory diseases. Moreover, according to the WHO, over 7 million people die every year
from health problems caused by pollution.
One of the causes of this excessive amount of time spent on the road in private road transport is
the need to spend time looking for free parking spaces. Pineda [4] studied the costs generated by the
extra distance vehicles have to travel to find a parking space in the cities of Madrid and Barcelona. The
costs in consumption for the extra distance and time spent on the road are approximately 347 million
and 268 million euros per year, respectively. Public transport authorities and the operators of parking
spaces are evaluating various solutions to improve parking space management. Solutions based on
infrastructure investment are expensive and implementation is slow. Technology-based solutions have
been proposed as an alternative with lower costs and faster implementation.

Sensors 2016, 16, 931; doi:10.3390/s16060931 www.mdpi.com/journal/sensors

intelligent vehicle parking space management systems may be classified according to the type of sensor detection. who modelled the availability of a car park using the Poisson process. as it requires that each parking space is equipped with sensors and a more sophisticated communications infrastructure. sending information. its main constituent elements. Srikanth [11] proposed an intelligent parking management system. A scientific solution based on a GPS-based vehicle navigation system and the past and current status of the car park was proposed by Pullola [9]. the system informs users and guides them to the location of the available space. called S3. A communication link is established by ZigBee and the electromagnetic sensors were developed specifically for this system. 2.Sensors 2016. consisting of a wireless network that uses different types of sensors to detect the presence of a vehicle in every one of the parking spaces. to provide context for our proposed system. Tests to verify system operation are described in the fourth section and. and periodically notify whether the space is occupied or available. Related Studies Various authors have looked at developing sensor-based technological solutions to improve the use of parking spaces. Motes (sensor nodes) equipped with acoustic and light sensors are located in each space. He distinguishes the systems that only monitor the entry or exit of vehicles from the parking area from the systems that are able to detect whether each parking space is occupied or free. Tang [6] proposed a wireless sensor network deployed in indoor car parks that shows the occupancy status of each parking space. Chen [14] proposed a . This system consists of a wireless sensor network that is divided into two subnetworks: one to detect vehicles parked in prohibited zones and the other to detect vehicles travelling at excessive speeds. Various parking space management system proposals are described below. Magrini [13] proposed a vision sensors network to monitor available spaces in public car parks. The author also proposed an intelligent algorithm which helps the driver choose the parking space with the highest probability of being vacant. This information may be communicated to drivers to facilitate their search for a parking space and to authorities so that they may take steps to control traffic when congestion is detected. Lin [8] proposed a vision-based parking management system to manage an outdoor car park using cameras set up around the parking space. The article is structured as follows: a selection of related studies is described in the second section. finally. Benson [7] also proposed a network-based wireless sensor system. The network’s sensor nodes communicate by radio frequency. The sensors used are Anisotropic Magneto-Resistive (AMR) magnetic sensors. Lee [10] proposed a combination of magnetic and ultrasonic sensors to control car parks. appropriate for monitoring the occupancy levels of large outdoor parking areas. This system is based on wireless networks of photoelectric sensors that are deployed on the access roads into and out of these areas. Yoo [12] described a system. explaining its general architecture. Systems belonging to the second type provide more useful and more detailed information to users and may be combined with positioning and guidance services to help locate the available spaces. and the wireless communication link is established by ZigBee. including real-time display. using distributed network nodes to perform the required processing and analysis of images. minimally-intrusive system for the efficient management of parking spaces on both public roads and controlled zones. This type of system is used in indoor parking spaces and is more complex and expensive than the entry and exit monitoring systems. 931 2 of 16 In this article we describe a low-cost. The sensors detect the passage of vehicles on these roads and communicate this information to a data centre. According to Bagula [5]. This system is based on a modified version of the min-max algorithm for detection of vehicles using magnetometers and an algorithm for ultrasonic sensors. Systems belonging to the first type are easier to deploy and less expensive. 16. which is designed to detect and register vehicles driving at excessive speeds or parked in prohibited zones. which is deployed in school zones. the main conclusions are presented in section five. The third section describes the system. to the ITS centre database. thus making it possible to know the number of vehicles in the controlled zone and the occupancy levels in real-time. moreover. and the method developed to detect the passage of vehicles.

This service is based on a central system that predicts the available spaces in the car park using cellular automata and an application for smartphones that uses various technologies to help drivers find free parking spaces. these systems mainly use infrared and electromagnetic sensors. to monitor parking spaces. Assistance in locating the space is provided by LEDs that indicate the status of the parking space. based on a wireless sensor network and LED display system that indicates the available spaces to drivers at the car park access points. The system’s functions include parking detection. 16. with ZigBee technology being the most used. achieving a reliability rate close to 99% in vehicle detection. Liu [17] described the iParking system. This parking management system provides information about the available parking spaces. In terms of network topology the most widely used is a tree topology. and uses a three-axis magnetic sensor to detect vehicles and ZigBee technology for wireless communications. for finding free parking spaces. The architecture of this system is based on a wireless network of ultrasound sensors that detect the presence of a vehicle in each of the parking spaces. 931 3 of 16 system for locating available spaces in indoor car parks and a guidance system to locate the available space. displaying the status of the parking spaces on the driver’s mobile device. The status of each space is transmitted by a sensor node that sends this information via RFID to special routing nodes. Salvadori [15] described image-processing techniques. which is used to develop a system to monitor traffic flow and parking spaces at the International Airport of Pisa. which recognises the licence plate automatically at the car park access point and provides vehicle information. Gu [18] proposed a system for managing parking spaces on public roads. based on Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs). As for wireless communications. Each parking space has a light sensor node that detects the status of the parking space. and that they usually include guidance services to locate the available space. which communicate with each other to relay the data packets sent by the sensor nodes to the control centre. Caballero-Gil [25] proposed a low-cost service to predict and manage indoor parking spaces. Karunamoorthy [24] proposed an intelligent parking system that uses image-processing techniques to solve the problem of unnecessary time consumption in finding a parking space in commercial car parks. Using a Wi-Fi network. Reve [19] also proposed a similar system. ensuring that the overall parking capacity is efficiently utilised. Considering the requirements of the user. Yang [21] presented a prototype Smart Parking Services system. achieving high-performance detection of their occupancy status. The network has a tree topology. Geng [22] proposed a smart parking system for urban areas. Giuffrè [20] proposed an IPA (Intelligent Parking Assistant) conceptual architecture that aims to overcome current parking management problems. experimental results show that this parking management system can achieve 95% accuracy. which indicate the spaces that are free. Tian [23] proposed an intelligent parking management system based on License Plate Recognition (LPR). In summary. and a mobile phone application. this information is sent to the central web server in real time. using threshold algorithms. reporting periodically to the embedded web server via the wireless sensor networks. The sensors are infrared and communications are established by radio frequency (RF). In the context of public parking space management based on image sensors. they use radio frequency. which is designed to facilitate the location of available spaces in an indoor car park. this system is also based on a wireless image sensor network. this review of related studies shows that most of the proposed systems are designed to be deployed in indoor car parks and to monitor individual parking spaces. the system assigns and reserves an optimal parking space combining proximity to destination and parking cost. reservation guarantee and Vehicle-to-Infrastructure (V2I) or Infrastructure-to-Vehicle (I2V) communication. a central web server. From the point of view of the type of sensors used. The system receives data from sensors located inside the car park. The system is called Street Parking System (SPS).Sensors 2016. an embedded web server. The proposed scheme consists of wireless sensor networks. Alessanderlli [16] proposed the ScanTraffic architecture. and is able to guide the driver to a free space using a positioning system for indoor spaces that is based on smartphone capabilities. . The system was tested in a garage of Boston University. and can be applied to real-time implementation. as well as an automated payment system for registered users. In the context of the Smart City paradigm.

it uses a wireless network of photoelectric sensors. the system can make use of virtualisation and computing paradigms to obtain the processing and storage resources required by the system architecture. not to monitor every single car space available.4 for communications. Despite their low cost. both the sensors themselves and the controlling boards have very low power consumption. is characterised by its ease of deployment. This will enable comprehensive. As a result of mass production. the system is intended to share parking availability data with the public authorities. further reducing infrastructure and system costs. and noise pollution. flexibility. know the occupancy levels of the parking zones at all times. This gateway system may also provide in situ information on the occupancy level of both areas through an LED system. The scheme represents the sensors and their direction on the access points and their communication with the gateway that relays the signal to the data centre. indeed. contributing to a reduction in both traffic and its carbon footprint. The system has been tested in closed car parks. to facilitate a scalable and flexible roll-out in large urban areas. the system would not account for every single slot. thus reducing the costs related to the deployment of technology. or for the users to employ technological gadgets to access or update information about car park availability. Therefore. Another advantage of this approach over others is that it does not rely on the user’s involvement for the system to meet its purpose. centralised handling of the data provided by the sensor network in a control centre. the sensors used for the system have a very low cost in comparison with other sensors used for parking management systems. It can be used across multiple communications platforms. Description of the System To monitor the number of available spaces in the parking zones a low-cost. There is no need for the vehicles to be equipped with smart location systems. therefore. In addition to this advantage. 931 4 of 16 The system proposed in this article is designed to monitor the entry and exit of vehicles into and out of outdoor parking zones located on public roads. . the proposed system will enable transport regulators to manage public parking zones sustainably. This means that a complex roll-out or new cabling infrastructure will not be required in the zone where the proposed system is deployed. 3. The system is non-intrusive too: it does not identify the vehicles or their drivers at all. From a technological point of view. emissions. and for this reason each sensor node is to be powered by a combination of batteries and solar power. Relaying pseudo real-time information to drivers avoids them having to spend more time on the road searching for a parking space. In conclusion. nor does it have to record or take pictures of them. IPv6 provides a basic transport mechanism to produce complex control systems and to communicate with other devices in a cost-effective manner using low-power wireless network. The network topology adopted for this system is a tree topology. In addition. using the IPv6 stack. the system. such as electromagnetic or pressure sensors. Finally. The authorities and drivers will. these sensors perform very well in detection applications.15. which is hugely important to enable the IoT. and even new sensor subnets to monitor new parking areas. and affordability when incorporating new nodes to monitor the access roads to the parking areas. Figure 1 shows the system being deployed on a public road and in a controlled parking area. and uses 6LoWPAN over IEEE 802. having proven reliability. low-energy WSN will be employed. this solution does not need more data processing than that done by the mainboards. Furthermore. as will be seen in this article. infrared sensors are widely employed in industrial automation processes. their compact size makes it possible to enclose the whole node in a small box. which hinders the circulation of other vehicles and increases fuel consumption. The sensors will detect the passage of vehicles on the roads into and out of the parking areas located on public roads in real-time. but it is designed to provide estimations on real-time occupation levels. 16. The real-time response is essential because the system would not be practicable if there was a considerable delay in updating these data. minimising the deployment efforts and costs. Although it has not yet been developed. On public roads.Sensors 2016. as no wiring is needed.

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Sensors 2016. future deployments could be altered and make use of street furniture like bollards. avoiding the need for retro-reflective or through-beam sensors.Relatively of transparent short the short sensing other technologies. providing a communications. objects.May Maydetect reflectionsfrom detect reflections . This photoelectric sensor allows detection by the three types of standard sensing modes listed Sensors in Table 1. Figure 4. process. The chosen sensing mode is the diffuse mode. . but using two sensors and debugged controlling software. Contiki is an open-source operating system geared specific library for the CC2530 system-on-chip. range.Requires May detect reflections8 of 16 with no calibration needed. Contiki elementisisdesigned composed forofsmall systems with a mainboard only similar to athat fewused kilobytes of memory for the available. specific library for the CC2530 system-on-chip. In addition. providing a full IP full IP network Figure stack. this In addition.chosen 16. Ideal for . It enables communication with microcontrollers via the Internet and can runTheongateway a wide range of wireless node receives the low-power packets sentdevices. High or traffic margin lights.).ofreflectivity.High margin for A highly highlyreflective alignment. were deployed in speed bumps. proper the most alignment. With regard to regard to communications.requirements. To develop the software for the sensor nodes we used the Contiki [29] operating system and the To develop the software for the sensor nodes we used the Contiki [29] operating system and the specific library for the CC2530 system-on-chip. it could be incorrectly counted.Most reliable sensing mode -.. with no calibration needed. If a person or an object other than a vehicle interrupts the sensor IR beam. sensor nodes.for . and its detection performance.A background may cause THROUGH-Beam applications. the efficient at memory management and provides different memory allocation mechanisms. characteristics the object DIFFUSE DIFFUSE . providing mechanisms to estimate the total energy consumption of the system and to identify the units that consume the most. To count vehicles entering and leaving the car park. Standard sensing modes of the sensor. In addition. contaminated environments. Gateway towards the Internet of Things.Not recommended for the ground. than through-beam.applications. shiny objects. recommended triggering of the sensor. High margin for straightforward installation is to deploy sensors contaminated on environments. avoiding . Disadvantages Sensing Mode Advantages . sensing range. Furthermore.Does not needenvironments. . false triggering background mayofcause the false . sensors were deployed in speed bumps. the most straightforward installation is to deploy sensors on the ground. two photoelectric othertechnologies. From the hardware point of view. The range depends on the Disadvantages Sensing Mode Advantages characteristics of the . . Contiki is fully compatible with the IPv6 and IPv4 standards. through-beam. -. through-beam. sensor Transmission located at the network stack.A(colour. It also links communications in the opposite direction. sensor. If a person or--anMost Mostreliable object reliable sensing other sensing mode than a vehicle .Requires reflector. for When those .1. the count will not increase unless the pair of sensors actually detect a vehicle. street furniture THROUGH-Beamlike bollards. -. Ideal for short-range etc. assensor shown photoelectric photoelectric sensorin located located Figure at the 5. reflective -.. . This pair of sensors is fitted on speedFigure bumps Figure 5. reflectivity. wiring of only one from shiny objects. During the--experimental reflector. it for highly reflective objects. photoelectric sensors. other technologies.

3. we used PostgreSQL to set up the database.Sensors 2016. 16. In the IEEE 802.4 standard is 127 bytes. and 2.4 uses the ISM band for industrial. The registration component consists of a database which will store information on registered users. as this header is too large for 802.4 standard. It will also send the relevant instructions to the sensor network and store system data.2. depending on the power level. the number of parking spaces available. as will be required by the proposed system. the 2. It is a modular framework with integrated unit testing (it includes support for JUnit and Selenium) that allows static methods. routing to external IP networks. Therefore. views and a multitude of features. the gateway software will have characteristics and functionalities similar to that used for the sensor nodes without having to perform data packing or unpacking.4 standard.15. The transmission of packets using the IPv6 protocol requires an adaptation layer between IPv6 and the IEEE 802. It also links communications in the opposite direction. 915 MHz in the US.15. non-blocking asynchronous communication. This network topology describes networks as flexible mesh. One of the functions of this adaptation layer is to compress the IP header. in addition to functioning as end devices. and support for multicast transmission. It also handles the routing of packets within the local IP network. Gateway The gateway node receives the packets sent by the sensor nodes and sends them on to the data centre. It should be noted that the sensor network will be implemented following the ad hoc topology. the sensor networks deployed. PostgreSQL functions include transactions.15. If there is a node in the data centre acting as a border router. This framework is inspired by Ruby on Rails and Django. IEEE 802. when designing devices for wireless sensor networks. In these networks all of the nodes provide routing services. The server component for reading and sending data to the sensor network was developed as a web service. Specifically.1. etc. while the maximum for the IEEE 802. These features are suitable for systems that need to handle large amounts of data and a high number of concurrent users accessing the system simultaneously. giving readings which indicate the passage of vehicles. It also incorporates Multiversion Currency Control—MVCC—which allows other clients to access it while a process is being written in a table without the need for locking. communication between the base station and the gateway will be done by 6LoWPAN.15. From the hardware point of view. a registration component will be used in the data centre.15. A server component will be installed to read and send data to the wireless sensor network while. The gateway will communicate with the sensor nodes using the 6LoWPAN communication protocol.4 GHz worldwide.15.4 GHz band is usually chosen since it is not assigned. Data Centre The data centre will receive information transmitted by the gateway and from the sensor nodes of the network.2. they also perform packet retransmission . and enables flexible web applications to be built. for storing system information. Communications System Communication between the sensor nodes and the gateway node will be performed using the 6LoWPAN protocol on the Contiki operating system. and medical uses: 868 MHz in Europe. readings of the status of neighbouring nodes.4. It also handles the fragmentation and reconstruction of packets because IPv6 supports a maximum transfer unit of 1280 bytes. scientific. using Play Framework with Java technology.4 standard. node consumption during transmission varies between 10 and 30 mA. this element is composed of a mainboard similar to that used for the sensor nodes. if the gateway is located very close to the data centre. However. so. In the proposed system each sensor node is assigned an IP address. 3. and communication is performed with a maximum transfer rate of 250 kbit/s.1. However. referential integrity. 931 9 of 16 3. This protocol allows the use of IPv6 over wireless networks implemented using the IEEE 802. a RS-232 serial connection will be used.3. and simple corrective maintenance.

Corporation. nodes.or entering entering orthe system exiting exiting startsactivates vehicle vehicle from an activates idle the state. Figure 77 shows shows the solution solution proposed proposed using using the the GP2Y0D02YK0F GP2Y0D02YK0F SHARP SHARP (Sharp (Sharp Corporation. 2. an or an exiting. twoof Each the the two twoS1sensors ofsensors and S2 S1 sensors was S1 and S2 S2 was placed and in aplaced was speed in placed aa speed bump in bump bump for for protection speed protection for and and and as as a deterrent protection as ato a deterrent encourage deterrent to encourage tothe vehicle’sthe encourage vehicle’s wheels the wheels to pass vehicle’s to to pass on each wheels sideon pass ofeach on side side of the speed each the the speed ofbump. The The exit entry exit and entry monitoring monitoring process was and entry monitoring process was carriedwas process carried outcarried out by by controlling controlling the the activation out by controlling activation theand and deactivation activation deactivation event of each and deactivation event of of the event of each of sensors the sensors (On/Off). 931 using 2016. 16. in which which Table no 2). The payload consists of a custom header. Osaka. the opposite opposite be active: S2 for entering vehicles and S1 for vehicles moving in the opposite direction. Japan) Japan) infrared infrared sensor. this topology requires routing protocols to calculate the most efficient route to favour lower energy consumption in the nodes. 931 10 of 16 multi-hop functions. idle sensors in (see state. the network can cover large areas. 7. Deployment of of the the sensors. no When sensor sensor is aactive. 6LoWPAN protocol under Contiki.3. Structure of data data packet packet sent sent by by the the sensor sensor nodes.As respectively. TheThe method method is is designed designed toto detect detect cars. L. Figure 6 shows the payload of a 6LoWPAN packet structure used in the system for communicating with the nodes. In In the sensor the final will final stage be stage beforeactivated: returningfor before returning S2 to to entering an idle vehicles state. two oror more more axles. each of the sensors (On/Off).detected. However. When aathanks When car car is to the order is entering entering or of activation or exiting. for exiting the exiting vehicles. Entry Entry Exit Exit S1 S1 S2 S2 S2 S2 S1 S1 Off Off Off Off Off Off Off Off On On Off Off On On Off Off On On On On On On On On . infraredEach Each of the sensor. only one sensor would be active: S2 for entering vehicles and S1 for vehicles moving in to an for idle state. L. Thanks to this feature. only and one S1 for sensor exiting would vehicles. the the first the second second sensor sensorsensor. Figure of vehicles. the and the system system deactivation starts starts from from an ofidle an the state. Japan) Osaka. this this Knowing allows configuration the precise situation of athe two sensors and the distance between them. 16. 931 10 10 of of 16 16 Figure Figure 6.them. vehicles only moving one in sensor the woulddirection. sensors. bump. Detection Detection of of the the Passage Passage of of Vehicles Vehicles This This section describes section describes describesthethe method themethod methodusedused usedtoto detect todetect detectthethe passage passageofof thepassage ofaaavehicle vehicle vehicleon on ona aaroad road into intooror roadinto out orout ofof out a of aa parking parking area. bump. The The sensor sensor node node is connected to is connected to two two sensors sensors that that detect detect the the passage passage of vehicles. Osaka. area. is active. be activated: activated: S2S2 for As the for entering vehicle entering vehicles continues vehicles and and S1 its S1 for movement. the solution proposed using the GP2Y0D02YK0F SHARP (Sharp Corporation. IDs for each specific sensor node. will will S1 be or S2 respectively. exit and length. the an entering the vehicle vehicle or exiting continues continues its vehicle activates its movement. The The distance. between the two bumps between the the two wasbumps two fixed inwas bumps was fixed order to in fixed in order detect order to to detect vehicles detect vehicles longer thanlonger vehicles than a certain longer aa certain thanlength. 3. direction. Map Map of of direction direction vector vector control control events events with with two two in-line in-line sensors. S1 noS2 S1 or or sensor S2 is active. Table Table 2. sensors. vans or larger vehicles of two or more axles. cars. Figure 7. distance. Knowing Knowing the the precise precise situation situation of of the the two two sensors sensors andand thethe distance distance between between them. car is Then. The between distance. activation activation and deactivation deactivation of of the the sensors sensors (see (see Table Table 2). sensor. entering Then. speed L.Sensors 2016. thistoconfiguration configuration allows the passage of a vehicle and its direction to be detected. These messages Sensors are sent Sensors 2016. The method is designed to detect cars. second vehicles. certainThelength. be In active: the S2 final for stage entering before returning vehicles and S1 an idle state. movement. sensor. Deployment Figure 7. the first first in which sensor. vans vans oror larger larger vehicles vehicles of of two parking area. 3. 16. the data length and the data itself (a message determining whether a vehicle went in or out). (On/Off). This way it is possible to transmit packets to nodes with which there is no direct coverage. respectively. Structure of 6. axles. thanks to the order the passage of vehicle and its direction to be detected. AsThen. thanks the order of of allows the andpassage of a vehicle and its direction to be2). exiting. Figure Deployment of the sensors.3.

if a avehicle shopping uses trolley. and once the wait time has passed. Vehicle Figure 8. reversed. this configuration of sensor pairs is not sufficient to avoid false positives. when vehicle passing reverses whenthrough. This avoids false positives in the event that the vehicle reverses and does not enter.to or if a vehicle change reverses direction. it means that the vehicle has stopped.ofvehicle reverses a vehicle. Therefore. object. This avoids false positives in the event that the vehicle reverses and does not enter. however. Lastly. a reading is taken from sensor 2. If sensor 1 is activated. If sensor 1 is still active but sensor 2 has not been activated. 16. If. passing orthrough. If sensor 1 is activated. T1 and T2. person with to avoid falsetrolley. Entry Exit S1 S2 S2 S1 Off Off Off Off On Off On Off On On On On Off On Off On Off Off Off Off Sensors 2016. False positives canwere added toby be triggered the monitoring a moving process. sensor. it is necessary to check that the vehicle has been detected by the two As the diagram shows. entry detection Vehicle entry detection sequence sequence diagram.the sensors and the timers monitoring the time of passage should be set with precision. sensor 1 is deactivated without sensor 2 having been activated the vehicle has reversed. monitoring Therefore. object. . at the entrance. vehicle is stationary. or leaves or leaves the parking area. As the vehicle enters. a reading is taken from both sensors every second. The detection detectionalgorithm algorithm follows the the follows sequence diagram sequence shownshown diagram in Figure in 8. a reading is taken from both sensors every second. As the vehicle enters. As the diagram shows.Sensors 2016. sensor 1 is deactivated without sensor 2 having been activated the vehicle has If. positives. a reading of the status of both sensors is taken. it is necessary to check that the vehicle has been detected by the two pairs pairs of sensors. or if a the distance vehicle uses between parameters the lane to perform the sensorsa and manoeuvre the timersto change direction. for instance. timer T1 is initiated to verify that the sensor has been activated by a vehicle and not a person or other timer T1 is initiated to verify that the sensor has been activated by a vehicle and not a person or other object. of sensors. a reading is taken from sensor 2. If sensor 2 has been activated and sensor 1 remains active. which means that the vehicle has entered the parking area. the parking area. This diagram Figure 8. it means that the vehicle has If sensor 1 is still active but sensor 2 has not been activated. 16. Figure 8. the time the distance of passage should parameters be set with between precision. 931 11 of 16 However. To decrease the error avoid falserate. one fora each for instance. passing the lane to through perform thea sensor manoeuvresystem.by oraifmoving a vehicleobject. This describes diagram how the T1 and T2 values are associated with each of the sensors to detect different describes how the T1 and T2 values are associated with each of the sensors to detect different events:events: passage of apassage vehicle. the vehicleor is thestationary. and once the wait time has passed. two timers. reverses a personorwith at the entrance. diagram. If none of the sensors is then deactivated it may mean that the vehicle is stationary or that a long vehicle is passing. Falsethrough passing positives thecan be triggered sensor system. stopped. however. 931 11 of 16 Table 2. a shopping positives. in the expectation that sensor 1 has been deactivated before sensor 2. timer T2 is initiated to verify that sensor 2 has been activated by a vehicle. Map of direction vector control events with two in-line sensors.

53 number. 16. 16. to the data centre. points. then on to the data centre. frame the data structure structure packet in described described sent by the sensor in Section Section 3. Following the data the data centre. Structure of data packet sent by the sensor nodes to notify vehicle entry or exit. the same process is followed in reverse: first sensor 2 has to be activated and then sensor 1. of installed it was the following in aaspects parkingof area the system: located on the Tafira Campus of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. enter. To test the proposed system under real conditions. 45 thesensor. inthen Figure on 6 to for data frame from the sensor node to the gateway node. in this case Timer1 (T1). 931 12 of 16 If sensor 2 has been activated and sensor 1 remains active. The “vehicle detection” event. exit.53 . 45 . 4F of bytes . the valuesthe53 sensor . hex 45hex. Sequencediagram 9. Figure 10. Therefore. 16. which in this in thisiscase case is 1finally. in the expectation that sensor 1 has been deactivated before sensor 2. Figure 9. nodewill hex 4F . the setup is shown in . a reading of the status of both sensors is taken. 4F hex hex. Sensors 2016. In Figure 9 we can see the role that the timer plays in detecting vehicle entry. Figure 10. frame.2 and shownnode. Lastly. and 52 willbebestructured hex structured hex (the word asas SENSOR) shown shown inin followed Figure Figure by 10:10: the a header a header of of sixsensor bytes node with identifier. both at the entry and exit control points. identifier.2 and 3. and andthenexit exit control on control points. Tests Figure 10.53 hex. associated with Sensor1 (S1) has been activated after an Off signal from S1. 4. Sequence diagram showing a failed attempt to enter. and hex hex52hex (thehex word SENSOR) followed by the in this case is 1 and. 931 12 of 16 not counted as an attempted entry since the vehicle would have had to reach a speed of more than 20 km/h. Tests for 10 vehicles and has a single lane that is used both to enter and exit. timer T2 is initiated to verify that sensor 2 has been activated by a vehicle. which means that the vehicle has entered the parking area. and.Sensors 2016. the with the data the datapacket values packetsent 53 sentbybythe hex . To detect a vehicle leaving the parking area. is notified by sending a The The “vehicle data“vehicle frame from detection” detection” event. bytes vehicle. This parking area has a capacity 4. the setup is shown in Figure To test 11. 4E hexhex . Structure of data packet sent by the sensor nodes to notify vehicle entry or exit. 1 and. identifier. Sequence diagram showing showing aafailed failedattempt attemptto to enter. 931 12 of 16 Figure Figure 9. the data field containing the value 1hex if notifying vehicle entry or a 0hex by the node sensor sensoridentifier. theThe tests were proposed conducted system undertoreal verify the behaviour conditions. node to both boththe at at the the entry gateway entrynode. finally. Structure of data packet sent by the sensor nodes to notify vehicle entry or exit. node identifier. the the sensor sensor identifier. it was installed in a parking area located on the Tafira Campus of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. finally. This parking areafor communications system. the field the data data containing field containing the value the value 1hex if1hex if notifying notifying vehicle vehicle entryentry or a or 0hexa 0 ifhex if notifying vehicle notifying vehicle exit. the numberthe number of bytes ofinbytes the in the data data field offield of the which the frame. and in52 the data (the field word of the frame. the sensorevent. if notifying vehicle exit.is Following is notified by notified by sending thesending data aa data frame frame from the structure sensor described node in to Section the gateway 3. establishing the configuration parameters of the system hascorrect a capacity detection of the passage of a vehicle (distance between the two speed bumps fitted with a sensor and for 10 vehicles and has a single lane that is used both to enter and exit. 4E the.2 and node shown shown will be instructured in Figure 66 for Figure as shown for in Figure notification notification of10: of a header entry entry or exit or of of exit of aa six vehicle. notification of Following entry or exit the of a data framevehicle. If none of the sensors is then deactivated it may mean that the vehicle is stationary or that a long vehicle is passing. 4E sensornode hex hex . it is Sensors 2016. which SENSOR) followed six bytes with the values 53hex.

Vehicle Type Wheelbase Value (s) Bus 15 m 2. Specifically. the test were: clear sky. and incorrect detection of the passage of a vehicle due to2016. with an error rate of 0%. 3). 931 13 of 16 Figure 11.must market concluding be takenthat intothe most account. cloudy sky. eachtypes of vehicles installed on the in a speed market bump. cloudy sky. two values values need to be correctly configured for the process to run reliably: need to be correctly configured for the process to run reliably:  The distance separating the sensors placed in each speed bump. m. such as a bicycle or a motorcycle.Sensors 2016. This called is a value these valuesthat T1 can be varied (value by reprogramming of sensor 1 timer) and T2the sensor (value of nodes. thus ‚ The time indicating that theeach sensorofofathe presence pair controlled moving byisa anode object. T1 for sensor 1 and T2 for sensor 2. we conducted 2. the . an automatic periodic verification verification process was developed to check the status of each sensor node. but longer than the wheelbase of other moving objects. to send the status of their status of their batteries every hour over a period of seven days. distance the lengths separating of the the two different sensors. This valuesensor that needs can beto be active. 0. at a constant speed of 20 km/h. that each sensor of the pair controlled by a node sensor needs to be active. One hundred the gateway node to the central data processing system. The weather conditions during received. Values of timers T1 and T2.6other moving objects. It was found that these were batteries every hour over a period of seven days. Sensors a false positive.6 m min. wheelbase. two Bearing in mind the way that the method of detecting passing vehicles was designed. To check the communications system was functioning correctly. each installed in a speed bump. For this. = T2. This is a fixed value that we ‚ The havedistance called L.24 Car Variable: 6. must value is a fixed be taken and. Specifically. The distance separating the two sensors. once they had been activated from the data processing centre. the sensor nodes were nodes were programmed.468–1. T1 = T2. and light rain. This is a fixed value that we have  called The timeL. Table 3. corresponding to such as a bicycle the shortest or a motorcycle. the sensor process was developed to check the status of each sensor node. is a fixed value and.7 Articulated bus 18. varied thus indicating by reprogramming the the presence of a moving sensor nodes. concluding that but longer the most than the appropriate wheelbase distance is of 2. once they had been activated from the data processing centre. 16. establishing the configuration parameters of the system for correct detection of the passage of a vehicle (distance between the two speed bumps fitted with a sensor and the time each sensor indicating the presence of a vehicle must be active).18 The time that each sensor must be active indicating the presence of a moving object. and light rain. Tests To test the proposed system under real conditions.6 m. it was installed in a parking area located on the Tafira Campus of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.1 m 0.into for aaccount. We have object. Deployment Deployment ofof prototype prototype sensor sensor system system to to monitor monitor access access to to the the parking parking area. are installed in the speed bumps. 16.092 m max. One hundred sixty-eight packages of 168 were sixty-eight packages of 168 were received. 931 13 of 16 4. we conducted lengths of theadifferent study oftypes vehicle lengthson of vehicles (see theTable 3). to send the programmed. called these values T1 (value of sensor 1 timer) and T2 (value of sensor 2 timer). with an error rate of 0%. for aThe correct setting. depends on the speed of the vehicle in the parking area access lane. This parking area has a capacity for 10 vehicles and has a single lane that is used both to enter and exit. appropriate For distance isa study this.of corresponding to the vehicle lengths (see Tableshortest wheelbase.separating the sensors placed in each speed bump. Figure 11. 2. the setup is shown in Figure 11. Bearing in mind the way that the method of detecting passing vehicles was designed. an automatic periodic To check the communications system was functioning correctly. It was found that these were correctly identified by correctly identified by their IPv6 address and that the frames were sent correctly without errors and their IPv6 address and that the frames were sent correctly without errors and correctly routed through correctly routed through the gateway node to the central data processing system. depending on vehicle type.the correct setting. area.08 Bicycle 1. sensor We have T1 2 timer). The weather conditions during the test were: clear sky. The The sensors sensors are installed in the speed bumps. The tests were conducted to verify the behaviour of the following aspects of the system: communications system.75 m 3.

Vehicle Type Wheelbase Value (s) Bus 15 m 2. a cloud-based management system and photoelectric sensors.1 m 0. Table 3 shows these values for different types of vehicles travelling at 20 km/h. This article has described a scalable. However. Thanks to Instituto Universitario de Ciencias y Tecnologías Cibernéticas of ULPGC for the right for use its parking area for prototype deployment. Vera Gómez. or an intentional improper use of the deployed system. To check the system.092 m max. these kinds of errors did not appear during the test period. T1 for sensor 1 and T2 for sensor 2. The network sensors are located on speed bumps placed on the way in or out of the parking areas.24 Car Variable: 6. . monitor entire districts of a city. not passing over both sensors situated on the ground. Author Contributions: Juan A. The number of detection monitoring units is low.7 Articulated bus 18. Thanks also to every member of Edosoft Factory Lab Team for their collaboration in the project. Acknowledgments: This Project has been funded by code TSI-020601-2012-47 under AETySI—Competitividad I+D programme of the Spanish Ministry of Industry. Conclusions One way to mitigate the negative effects of heavy vehicle traffic in urban and metropolitan areas is the effective management of vehicle parking spaces. as this would further facilitate adoption of this monitoring technology. These nodes communicate wirelessly with in situ signalling devices and gateway units that send the signal to the central management server for processing or distribution via the Internet. 2. 0. depending on vehicle type. In addition. but avoiding one of them when entering or leaving the parking zone. be scaled up to a city-wide level. Juan A. 16. Raúl Suárez Moreno and Fernando Guerra Hernández developed the sensor nodes software module and the gateway software module. the hardware selection and the tests. and the system can. due to moving objects other than vehicles entering the parking zone. using the 6LoWPAN protocol. These tests were performed using conventional passenger cars. thus. Energy and Tourism (sponsors). For future research.75 m 3. it was tested under real conditions monitoring a car park on a university campus.468–1.6 m min. The system architecture and the elements that configure it facilitate deployment in parking zones located on public roads. like trucks or buses. and minimally-intrusive parking space monitoring system. not other types of vehicles. Alexis Quesada-Arencibia and Carmelo R. the maximum speed allowed in parking areas is 20 km/h. Values of timers T1 and T2. these sensors are connected to nodes capable of processing the signal sent by the sensors to detect the entry or exit of vehicles into or out of the parking area. as long as all the entry and exit points are controlled.08 Bicycle 1. Vera Gómez directed the research study. 931 14 of 16 Table 3. monitoring entire areas.Sensors 2016. These were caused by vehicles. although false negative values were detected. all authors contributed to the preparation of this manuscript. therefore.18 The time that each sensor must be active indicating the presence of a moving object. at a constant speed of 20 km/h. Technology has been mooted as the basis for solutions that will have the fastest impact and lowest cost. using a wireless sensor network based on IPv6. False positive situations are impossible to avoid. we propose reducing installation impact by incorporating the solar power system and the processing and communication node together with the sensors in the speed bump. The tests showed that the system works correctly with an error rate of less than 1%. García developed the data centre software module and the communication system. low-cost. tests should be conducted in traffic zones with higher speeds—50 and 60 km/h—in order to be able to implement the system on fast lane exit points and. depends on the speed of the vehicle in the parking area access lane. 5. due to parking size restrictions. generally short vehicles. all authors contributed to the design of the system architecture.

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