In Vienna, Austria, button-driven traffic light systems can "have their days counted." According to Phys.org, these traffic lights do not satisfy pedestrians, who do not have the patience to wait for the green, after pressing the button, causing them to cross when the signal is red. On the other hand, these are used as fun to "annoy" drivers in many situations where no one crosses.
With regard to safety, but also to the optimization of traffic management, the municipal authority responsible for urban lighting and traffic signals has commissioned TU Graz's Institute of Computer Graphics and Vision to develop a new system to replace push-button models.
The new traffic light uses a camera that recognizes pedestrians' intentions to cross the road, switching to green automatically. The system will also allow an optimization in the flow of automobile traffic and the passage of people. For example, the green light may be extended if larger groups of people are detected. And if people cross without the light still green, the traffic light registers the action and does not open the signal for pedestrians.
As it is explained, the chambers of traffic lights detect people in a field of view from eight to five meters, but cover visually up to three meters. And it only takes a second to gauge people's intent by recording action immediately. The system then decides when to open the signal, managing with the circulation of the vehicles. Traffic lights are also equipped with a monitoring system that reports offenses immediately.
It is estimated that the new semaphores will be installed in 2020, in an initial evaluation phase.