Chameleon Interfaces

Chameleon keeps older traffic light controllers in sync with the newest tech

Traffic Light Controllers (TLC) could be considered the cornerstone of traffic management: without them, traffic lights across urban networks wouldn’t be in sync and cities would soon descend into chaos. TLCs themselves, however, used to have limited processing power, so outstations were incorporated to add communication and intelligence.

 

At Dynniq, we developed Chameleon to keep these older, and often costly, controllers in step with the latest tech. Designed to work across a variety of operational modes and with different control strategies, Chameleon provides an efficient and cost-effective solution for traffic applications.

Connecting older traffic light controllers with the latest technology

Because of the investment involved in new traffic light controllers (TLCs), traffic authorities tend to keep their older models in use for many years. Connecting these to newer Urban Traffic Management and Control (UTCM) systems, such as Dynniq’s Traffic Management System (TMS), requires a so-called outstation unit. That’s what Chameleon is. It works like a modem: install it in a junction or pedestrian controller, and it will translate the incoming information and commands from the UTCM server for the controller, while sending back data on the status of the signal junction to the UTCM. Chameleon can act as a Remote Monitoring Outstation in either urban traffic control mode when connected to our Traffic Management System (TMS), or stand alone when connected to our Remote Monitoring Systems(RMS). It makes remote monitoring easy for traffic managers: with an intuitive, web-based interface, they can easily access, monitor and configure the traffic light controller.

Prioritising public transport

By deploying Chameleon at each controller site, city councils can monitor local conditions and upload or download new plans, timetables and schedules for traffic lights. These plans and timetables can help reduce congestion and gridlocks, but they can also be set up to give priority to certain vehicles. Public transport vehicles, for example, can be given traffic signal priority as they progress through the city, making bus schedules more reliable and encouraging greener mobility.

Never lose power

One of the things that makes Chameleon unique is that it includes battery back-up. In a complex traffic network, this significantly reduces the delays that might otherwise result from controller power losses. This means traffic managers are alerted to issues before, or regardless of, delays and complaints: Chameleon informs them in real time if there is a failure, even identifying how many controllers have been affected. Similarly, for junctions that operate on a Fixed Time method, plans can be uploaded to Chameleon, so that if communication with the controllers is lost, the traffic lights continue their cycle and the flow of traffic isn’t interrupted.

Compatible with third-party products

The traffic management industry is about systems working together to ensure smooth and effective traffic flow. As participants in this vital industry, we understand that products must also work together. That is why Chameleon uses open protocol communications, allowing local traffic authorities to combine it with other systems.

Chameleon: an intelligent communication outstation

  • Third party interface available
  • Remote access to the controller’s command line interface from an in station; including the ability to view the controller’s fault log
  • Remote Monitoring Outstation (under UTC and RMS)
  • Download and upload new plans, timetables and schedules
  • Supports up to 96 inputs and 96 outputs
  • Open protocol communications
  • Web-based user interface
  • An uninterruptible power supply (enabling notification of power fail)
  • Optional Lamp Monitoring Unit (LMU) facilitates extensive lamp monitoring capabilities.

Find out more about how Chameleon was used in Glasgow to create a priority bus corridor.