AWS Public Sector Blog

Supporting smart and sustainable transportation innovation at the ITS World Congress

This year, the Intelligent Transportation Society (ITS) World Congress brought together more than 6,000 industry professionals from 64 countries to discuss ways to advance the deployment of intelligent transportation technologies to save lives, improve mobility, promote sustainability, and increase access to communities across the globe.

For the event, ITS organized a Global Innovation Competition sponsored by Amazon Web Services (AWS) to encourage the development of innovative solutions that address priority themes using cloud technology. Ahead of the event, ITS accepted applications from companies developing cloud technology solutions that promote a safer transportation system, increase resiliency and sustainability, and make transportation smarter and more responsive. Eight finalists were selected from the applicant pool. These early-stage companies were given the chance to engage funders, private companies, governments, and other leaders at the ITS World Congress Event to facilitate bold ideas around using technology to advance safer, greener, and smarter mobility solutions.

The top eight selected finalists were Seoul RoboticsTRAINFOGridmatrixNota IncorporatedLilinDerqSentinel Transportation Systems LLC, and Roadway Management Technologies. These finalists presented live pitches in front of a distinguished panel of judges, which included ITS experts and industry thought leaders. Ultimately, the judges named Derq Inc. from the United States as the winner of the global division and TRAINFO from Canada as the North American winner.

Alongside publicity and professional support from ITS and the European Road Transport Telematics Implementation Coordination Organization (ERTICO), both winners were awarded $12,500 in AWS Credits to further the development of safe, smart, and sustainable transportation innovation in the cloud.

Global division winner Derq, Inc uses AI on AWS to advance road safety

Derq’s solution is an artificial intelligence (AI)-powered smart infrastructure platform that advances safety by detecting “near-miss” interactions at intersections and crosswalks, and identifying dangerous roadway behavior, such as red-light running, speeding, wrong-way driving and pedestrians crossing against a red light. Derq’s platform ingests and fuses data from internet of things (IoT) traffic cameras and sensors, and then runs real-time edge analytics to enable infrastructure perception and vehicle-to-everything 5G applications, as well as actionable safety and traffic insights through a user-friendly web-based dashboard that reports real-time and granular insights, including event video recordings and metadata, heatmaps, and statistical reports. Derq’s platform also provides real-time infrastructure perception data on road user movement, behaviors, and interactions to connected autonomous vehicles (CAVs). This complements the perception abilities of CAVs beyond their on-board sensors and enables complete complex maneuvers, like entering busy intersections, negotiating left- or U-turns, merging into live traffic, and “seeing” around obstructions and spatiotemporal variables with multiple degrees of granularity. Derq is currently deployed in the Detroit Metro area with the Michigan Department of Transportation (DOT), the City of Fremont, CA, as well as with automotive partners including Motional and Denso.

Derq relies on a large set of tools and services provided by AWS in its technology stack, including Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), Amazon Cognito, and more. Derq also uses AWS for more advanced needs like running machine learning (ML) models or edge computing architecture for low latency applications. Derq plans to use the awarded AWS Credits from the ITS Global Innovation Competition to accelerate its research and development efforts in ML model training, as well as the development of connected infrastructure applications using 5G and IoT technologies.

TRAINFO uses AWS to reduce congestion at rail crossings and more

TRAINFO’s mission is to prevent traffic delays and collisions at rail crossings with its IoT-enabled rail insights platform. TRAINFO’s rail insights platform can predict future train movements and resulting traffic delays. This information is shared with motorists through dynamic message signs on the roadway, through integration into mobile apps like WAZE, and through improved traffic signal timing. In addition, TRAINFO integrates into 911 systems to help first responders avoid costly delays at rail crossings while on life saving calls.

TRAINFO is deployed in Houston, Chicago, London, Winnipeg, and over 20 other cities, covering roughly 100 crossings. Cities that use TRAINFO have seen congestion reduction at the road network surrounding the crossing between 20-30 percent and emergency responder delays reduced by 90 percent.

AWS provides TRAINFO with the necessary scalable infrastructure to support AI-based systems. Specifically, TRAINFO operates a hybrid data architecture utilizing Amazon Aurora and Amazon Neptune. Neptune allows TRAINFO’s AI models to reference the transportation network in its true network form. Aside from TRAINFO’s data architecture, services like AWS Lambda help TRAINFO reduce costs to run the computational batch processes required to train its AI models. Using AWS, TRAINFO only pays for the necessary resources they need and only when they need it. TRAINFO plans to use the AWS Credits awarded to experiment with new services that will allow its platform scale more efficiently.

Learn more

Are you interested in how to pursue AWS credits for your organization and innovation initiatives? Check out AWS programs like the Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative (ASDI) that supports experimentation and development for sustainability-related projects, or the AWS Activate program for startups, founders, and entrepreneurs. Please reach out to the AWS Public Sector Team to help find the right program for you.

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