Design story

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Empathies - STEAM Challange

Camera Cone Ltd

The camera cone company was created to place an emphasis on the safety of road workers, by adapting a road cone into a speed camera as an innovative way of enforcing speed regulations.

 

Our Vision

Our goal was to expand on this by creating a road system in which this product can be used. Implementing features to accommodate emergency services fits this idea, by adding additional measures in place for vehicles potentially travelling at a higher speed, with more sense of urgency.

By adding the aforementioned features, this could contribute to controlling the higher risks associated to the surrounding vehicles and road workers. For example, the flashing lights indicate to road workers and drivers to be aware of an oncoming vehicle, whilst also reducing the waiting time for emergency vehicles.

The Beginning

 

The prototype began by designing a traffic light circuit, using an Arduino, LED lights and a distance sensor.

The main problem we faced during the prototyping stage was which type of sensor to use. Our first choice was the ultrasonic distance sensor, due to researching that these are widely used in self driving cars. Companies like Tesla use these because they are designed to detect everything, this is great for self-driving cars as they need to detect everything that could cause a collision. However, we need the sensors to only detect Emergency Service Vehicles.

Ideate - Solutions

This led to more research to understand how we could build a sensor to only detect a specific object – this is when we found the RFID sensor. This type of sensor is designed so that only the transmitter tag will be detected by the receiver, therefore our design solution would be to implement this by issuing transmitter tags to all emergency service vehicles.

This allowed us to code the lights to change in a red, amber, green sequence, changing to green whenever a transmitter tag was detected – along with executing a blue flashing light.

At this point we had the core of our project completed, from here it was a case of soldering, laser cutting and gluing to build a road model where we can demonstrate our circuit, to represent how we envision it to function in the real world.

Prototype 1

What we started with…

Prototype 2

Final Prototype

Test - Results