01 Jul
2016

Cubic’s NextTraffic Is Using Microsoft Azure for Traffic Management

The transportation industry relies heavily on data. In the recent past, data was collected via cameras and other devices and housed on physical hardware. Then, the data had to be collected and compiled by a person. Today, the data comes from sensors, connected in-car navigation systems, cameras and other sources. It is collected, compiled and analyzed by computers and stored on the internet, which makes the margin of error much lower. Plus, the transmission of the data is instantaneous, allowing industry professionals to make adjustments faster.

Managing all this data takes a tremendous amount of computing power. As data and changes increase during peak travel times, the load can be too much on a company’s infrastructure, which is why cloud computing is an advantageous solution. For example, Microsoft Azure is a scalable and flexible all-in-one cloud system that empowers transportation companies to bring in additional power during busy times and scale back when things are slow. 

One transportation company Microsoft Azure is powering is the NextTraffic traffic management system for Cubic Transportation Systems. This system handles the collection, processing, monitoring, controlling and management of traffic. NextTraffic works with traffic signal management applications, video, message signs, connected vehicle portals, weather sensors and speed controls, and the Azure platform combines a browser interface, website, mobile access, data analytics and an organizational reporting tool to handle these tasks.

In the past, Cubic used components from several different systems to provide traffic management solutions on a single platform. By moving its operations to Microsoft Azure, the company is now able to significantly increase its processing power by streamlining the amount of applications running in the background and feeding into the NextTraffic stream.

One of the biggest advantages of Microsoft Azure is its ability to communicate with the sensors that most government transportation systems rely on today for real-time data. Cubic’s Director of Strategy Andy Taylor explains that NextTraffic needed to connect to the sensors and be on a scalable platform because the majority of the sensor data didn’t need to be collected around the clock.

He simply concludes, “We knew the cloud was the best choice.”

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