Precise, accurate, reliable – new static speeds for better route calculation within PTV xServer

Excellent maps – the basis for accurate route calculation (image: istock sturti)

In logistics, every kilometre and every minute counts. Inaccuracies in calculating routes, no matter how small, sum up and can cause high costs in the end. Accuracy is therefore key. That is why our map and data experts invested substantially in the latest state-of-the-art technology and data to present a new generation of digital maps that is about to become the European standard.

The world is in motion – literally. With the economic upswing and the subsequent extensions of the infrastructure and road network in South-East Europe, the increasing urbanisation and the boom of home delivery, a growing number of cars and trucks are entering the European roads and populating the inner cities. How does this affect driving speeds? Are old maps, speed values and vehicle profiles still accurately portraying the reality on Europe’s streets? And how could maps be improved to portray these changes better?

How fast can a truck go in the city?

If you want to know how long it takes you to get from A to B, you can simply use one of the many online route planners. The results are more or less realistic, and you normally don’t care if you’ll be a couple of minutes too late or if you are really on the shortest route. In professional logistics, however, every unnecessary kilometre creates costs; a delay jeopardises operations and annoys customers. You need accuracy and reliability. That is why PTV logistics solutions take all kinds of restrictions and information into consideration when calculating a route, such as environmental zones, road conditions, hazardous goods restrictions, vehicle profiles, toll costs, as well as historical data and real-time traffic information.

How fast can a truck go in the city? (picture: istock Franz Wilhelm Franzelin)

One more crucial thing that PTV does to allow for accurate route calculation is the specification of the so-called static speeds in the underlying maps, consisting of network and speed classes. The network classes define the street type of segments in a map, e.g. highway or inner-city road. In the vehicle profiles, speed ranges are given for each network class. Thus, if you want to know, how fast a truck can go from A to B on a road in the city, the PTV logistics tools choose the network class for an inner-city road and combine it with the speed range for this particular vehicle. However, not all inner-city roads are alike, and on some parts of the road, you can go faster than on others. That is why subclasses, so-called speed classes, are being generated for each segment of the road, giving a more granular and accurate speed for a specific vehicle.

Map update: What’s new?

To keep our maps up to date, we regularly conduct analyses, comparing the results of our routing calculations with actual truck speeds derived from GPS and truck FCD (floating car data). Our latest analysis of the European road network has shown, that there were tremendous changes in urban regions over the last years causing our static routing speeds to be too fast within urban regions and too slow in rural areas. Since accuracy is our main objective, we adapted to these changes and calibrated our network and speed classes accordingly. That enables you to make even more precise and reliable route calculations including the cost per vehicle. For the benefit of your customers and your business. Within urban as well as rural areas.

Taking route calculation two steps further

Static speeds are the essential basis for an accurate and reliable route calculation. They enable you to calculate a CTA (Calculated Time of Arrival) for every stop of your planned route. To further boost the accuracy of your routing and arrival times, PTV provides you with additional data and tools, enabling you to calculate not just a CTA and PTA, but also an ETA.

Ready to deliver with precision and accuracy?

Accurate data is at the heart of efficient urban logistics (image: istock nullplus)

Empowering you to deliver in time, to increase the efficiency of your logistics operations and to make a success of your business – that is our main goal. Reliability and accuracy are therefore paramount when it comes to the maps and data we use for our logistics solutions. We regularly invest substantially in our algorithms and data and make use of our 20 years of experience and expertise in the field of digital maps to provide you with the best maps and speeds we ever had.