In response to demands on the traffic network, SCATS can:
- Determine stage splits at intersections
- Alter cycle time of intersections either individually or in groups
- Introduce cycle or plan-dependent options.
Using data from vehicle detectors and SCATS, your traffic engineer is able to implement maximum throughput, minimum stops and minimum delay strategies. SCATS is a cycle-by-cycle system that optimises cycle length, splits and offsets each and every cycle.
The SCATS system operates in real time, adjusting signal timings in response to variations in traffic demand. SCATS controls traffic on an area basis rather than on an individual, uncoordinated intersection basis.
SCATS is adaptive unlike a fixed time system that is generally unable to cope with unpredictable traffic conditions. This means it requires no pre-calculations or composite signal timing plans.
Instead, SCATS uses logic and algorithms to analyse real-time traffic data from vehicle detectors to produce signal timings that are suitable for the prevailing traffic conditions.
Vehicle detectors are required to operate an efficient fully adaptive, urban traffic control system. The detectors (typically in the form of loops) act as voting elements, which, as more vehicles cross, help SCATS to determine the traffic conditions needed to:
- Extend the green phase.
- Give an approach more time.
- Reduce the green phase back to normal levels.
Alternative detection technology can be used as long as it has clean contact outputs and can be interfaced with a SCATS-compatible or SCATS-compliant controller.