VDO extends the functions of digital tachographs to comply with new regulations
- New laws in the EU, Russia and Turkey: Tachographs to give authorities more effective help in roadside checks
- Data on manipulation or misuse will be sent by remote communication
- Tachograph specialist VDO equips vehicle fleets in accordance with new guidelines
Villingen-Schwenningen, July 7 2014. The demands on digital tachographs are continuing to grow. In the future they will help authorities to optimize traffic flow and traffic safety, and they will provide greater assistance in roadside vehicle checks. New regulations in these areas came into effect this year in the EU, Russia and Turkey. “We have closely examined the new rules for each country and are working on solutions,” says Dr. Michael Ruf, Head of Commercial Vehicles & Aftermarket at Continental. “Our tachograph specialist VDO already provides a number of the technologies required by the EU and has done so for a long time.”
EU Regulation 165/2014: Intelligent tachographs facilitate roadside checks
In the coming years the EU will be relying on intelligent tachographs to improve road safety. The details are contained in the new EU Regulation 165/2014 on tachographs in road transport. Here it is recommended that future digital tachographs should have three new functions: an ITS interface (Intelligent Transport Systems), a DSRC interface (Dedicated Short Range Communication) and GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) integration. With these new functions the EU is pursuing two main goals. First, in roadside checks digital tachographs should transmit a precisely defined data set to control authorities by means of remote communication. This will increase the effectiveness of vehicle checks and improve the flow of traffic. Second, drivers who comply with the rules for driving times and rest periods should be able to document this fact in a road check without a long wait.
ITS interface links vehicles to authorities
An ITS interface links a digital tachograph to external ITS applications by means of a remote connection. It allows the transmission of specific anonymized data such as remaining driving times. The data can provide useful information for traffic planning and control, optimization of traffic flow and utilization of capacity in parking areas. “Future tachographs will have this function,” says Ruf. VDO has begun to market DTCO SmartLink, a small connectivity module that is linked to the digital tachograph (DTCO) and transmits data to a mobile device via Bluetooth. “This technology can be adapted to comply with future EU requirements,” explains Ruf.
Mobile data transmission allows preselection of vehicles
The EU intends to make vehicle checks more efficient through the addition of a DSRC interface to digital tachographs. Control authorities will have remote access to specific driver card data via the DSRC interface; the data will be transmitted during driving in a matter of seconds. Vehicles with data suggesting manipulation or misuse can be checked more closely. “The DSRC interface might also be useful for adding other important functions to our digital tachographs, such as transmission of toll data or on-board weighing,” says Ruf. “These additional functions would also save valuable time for drivers and control officers.”
Vehicle positions to be recorded every three hours
Up to now, digital tachographs have only had to record the times at the start and end of each journey, plus the country symbol. In order to permit quicker investigation of violations, the new EU regulation provides for the installation of GNSS technology in tachographs. This will allow tachographs to record and store the vehicle position at the start and finish of the working period as well as after every three hours of accumulated driving time.
Digital tachographs are now mandatory in Russia; Turkey will base its rules on the EU regulation
Starting on April 1, 2014, vehicle fleets operating on Russian territory must be equipped with digital tachographs that comply with national requirements. A special point is that tachographs must have a CIPD module (Cryptographic Information Protection Device) that stores data relevant to roadside checks. “Here we can offer our Russian customers quick, local service and high-quality products because we as Continental and a local partner are producing our Russian digital tachographs in the country,” says Ruf. Turkey also has new tachograph regulations for vehicles that operate in the country. Dates for introduction have not yet been set, however. The Turkish guidelines are based on the new EU regulations, and the functions required for tachographs on the Turkish market are similar to those in Europe, with only minor adjustments being necessary. “We’ll also be ready to supply our Turkish customers with the necessary tachographs in good time and provide the best possible support during the service life,” says Ruf. “Our customers can rely on us. We keep a close watch on new legal requirements, adapt our products accordingly and supply companies with the service they need.”