Imagine driving from Sweden to Spain and never having to stop to pay a toll. That scenario could soon become a reality thanks in part to the work of PISTA, which has validated a new European standard for interoperable electronic fee collection (EFC) systems.
Through trials in seven European countries, the IST project has proven the practicality of toll road operators applying the CEN 278 interoperability standard to EFC systems, which allow drivers to pay tolls electronically through the use of tags in their vehicles that communicate with roadside antennas.
“EFC technologies are very mature, but the problem has been a lack of standardisation,” explains Rafael Fando, the PISTA project manager at Cintra in Spain. “Toll road operators in different countries have used different, incompatible technologies, meaning that an EFC user in one country cannot use their tag to pay tolls in another country.” The CEN 278 standard overcomes that problem by ensuring all EFC systems are compatible with each other. “Basically we tested what it takes to make the standard work,” Fando says.
Tara Morris | alfa
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