How it Works

How does smart parking works?

Introduction

Imagine a situation where you have a meeting in the office, you reached the office on time, but the parking is full. You started roaming around to find a suitable parking slot. You finally got a place after an hour of wait. You rushed to the meeting room, but the meeting has already started when you walk into the meeting room. You are sweating due to frustration. These types of embarrassing situations are common these days due to the dense population in large cities.

These are the reasons smart parking systems are becoming quite popular these days. The Smart parking system is a combination of sensors, IoT-based cloud systems, apps, etc.
The sensor determines the parking, traffic status. Smart parking systems can enhance the administration of parking lots and traffic.
They also enhance the driving experience.

What is a smart parking system?

This is a system that gives data about parking availability. It uses IoT (Internet of things) besides sensor technology, to collect and analyze the data.
Drivers use this data to find an empty parking place, without wasting their time and fuel. This will reduce traffic and gas emissions, fuel, and time wastage. It will also enhance the services and increase the revenue.

What are the components involved in it?

The smart parking system involves various components in it.

Sensors:

They are buried under road surfaces. They give real-time status of the parking lot. The working of sensors can vary, depending upon the type of sensor used.

Central Server:

Data is collected in real-time from sensors and sent to the user through radio communication.

App:

A web or android app which interacts with the drivers and administrators of parking lots.

How does this smart parking system work?

The sensors collect data about the vacancy of the parking lot. This data is then transferred to the server using a wireless IoT system.
These devices remain connected with each other, using an IoT cloud-based system.
The data is then analyzed using big data and parking status is calculated. For Data analysis AWS lambda, AWS IoT can be used.
The availability of parking slots is then demonstrated by vehicle detection sensors.

This status can be seen on the software or app, mounted on the available slots so that space can be detected by the drivers.
The App can be either web or android depending on the need. Administrators can control and check the status using their web app.
Drivers can have a mobile (android/ios) app which will guide them to a suitable and vacant parking lot.

The app is loaded with features like online payment to book the parking slot, real-time status of traffic on the route, etc. to ensure smooth parking and driving experience.
This IoT-based system hence has the extra benefit of reducing the traffic load.

How can we improve the smart parking system?

We can use data science and computer vision technology to recognize the number plates of vehicles.
If a vehicle owner books a slot for two hours and leave only after half an hour, that slot can be given to someone else after consulting the previous driver. In this way space can be utilized wisely and efficiently.

Improving the IoT system can reduce the time taken in data transfer and analysis. We can further improve the user experience, by installing software in the car which will guide the vehicle owners or drivers to the nearest and empty parking lot.
Furthermore, sensors can also be upgraded. We can use ultrasonic, Infrared, and electromagnetic sensors which can improve the accuracy of data obtained.

Challenges:

A beneficial IoT solution must transfer field data to the cloud easily. All with the least investment reduced maintenance cost and increased ROI.
IoT solutions being new, are expensive. There can be hidden costs like the failure of sensors, difficulty in connectivity with the cloud, etc.
These factors increase the cost of the smart parking system making it less popular.

Benefits:

According to certain reports, 40% of drivers in the USA face parking issues on regular basis. This leads to wastage of time, fuel and is quite frustrating.
The Smart parking system is the most suitable solution for these problems. That’s why the demand for this intelligent technology is on the rise these days.

Conclusion

Smart parking technology is a revolutionary technology for people who love exploring new places by road. It’s a boon especially for urban drivers and office workers. But improvements need to be done to make it more user-friendly and easily accessible. Many large companies have recognized its potential and are working on it.