Yunex Traffic discusses combatting rising energy costs and supply chain pressures through intelligent design
Against a backdrop of soaring energy costs, continuing supply chain difficulties and constantly shifting market dynamics, local authorities are looking for innovative, forward-thinking solutions that will mitigate against these pressures.
Whilst there may be no ‘silver bullet’ to provide a single solution, across different market sectors suppliers are increasingly developing innovative products and processes that can help drive cost efficiencies, performance enhancements and sustainability benefits.
Yunex Traffic is doing just that in the intelligent traffic systems sector, leading the UK market and introducing new solutions that can help local authorities in particular address these issues. For example, the company’s LED retrofit solution for traffic lights and signals is a cost-effective answer to help address rising energy costs and counter imminent lamp obsolescence, as well as delivering significant decarbonisation benefits.
Many traffic signals operating in the UK are still fitted with traditional, inefficient incandescent signal lamps that use large amounts of power and need to be regularly replaced. With supplies of tungsten halogen bulbs becoming increasingly limited as the products head towards obsolescence and manufacturers cease production, prices of these previous generation lamps are now expected to rise significantly.
LED Retrofit solution
Working with authorities across the UK, Yunex Traffic has been involved in upgrade programmes to retrofit traffic signals with LED technology, helping reduce carbon emissions and energy bills and extending the life of on-street equipment. Requiring around 75% less power than traditional bulbs, LED units not only provide significant cost savings, but they also require significantly fewer routine maintenance visits to replace and clean lamps (again generating cost savings and reducing carbon emissions).
Yunex Traffic’s LED traffic signal retrofit solution allows authorities’ investment in most of their installed signal equipment to be retained. Just the old bulbs and associated housings are swapped out for modern LED ones, minimising waste and disposal issues and generating carbon savings. And with some local authorities reporting energy costs rising by as much as 300%, the payback period for a typical LED retrofit solution could be as little as 3 to 4 years.
Yunex Traffic has already delivered lamp upgrade programmes for many authorities across the UK, working closely at every stage from design and delivery through to installation and maintenance. Where required, the company has also provided support in identifying and securing the most appropriate funding sources.
Whilst many transport bodies and local authorities have already acted to future-proof their critical traffic management infrastructure, many are yet to do so. And in delaying, they are not only putting their road networks at risk, but are also missing out on the significant power saving benefits of the LED technology. Yunex Traffic has already undertaken signal retrofit work across the UK, including extensive programmes in London and Manchester. In Manchester alone, energy and maintenance cost savings of £1 million were achieved in the first two years following completion of a retrofit programme.
Transforming traffic signal design and installation
First commissioned in Coventry in 2020, Yunex Traffic’s Plus+ traffic control solution equally delivers cost and performance benefits, with the system’s innovative design transforming the way traffic light schemes are designed and installed – and in doing so, delivering significant environmental and cost benefits.
Plus+ is the first new approach to traffic signal control for decades, and the result of many years of research, development, and testing by Yunex Traffic. The system enables the large number of signal cables that would have been used in a traditional system to be replaced with a much simpler network.
The environmental and cost benefits of this are significant. Compared to a traditional traffic signal system, for a typical road junction signal scheme, Plus+ can virtually eliminate disruptive civil construction work and save a massive 6km (and one tonne) of thick, heavy copper cable being buried beneath our roads, and prevent over 4.5 tonnes of embedded CO2 from entering the atmosphere. And by reducing the cost and time of installation, there’s much less disruption for road users.
Both these solutions illustrate the potential benefits that innovative forward thinking solutions from companies like Yunex Traffic can deliver, not only making sound economic and environmental sense, but also future-proofing public sector assets for the medium to long term and hedging against dated technology and an unpredictable supply chain.
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