You couldn’t make it up. Hitzler is back. The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) sent its technology guru to a German firm that measures treads on passing tyres. It makes a clever device that costs €50,000, looks like a manhole cover and ACPO obviously sees it as a revenue earner, like speed cameras. Trevor Hall, its consultant on enforcement technology has been to ProContour, which makes the thing and according to its marketing director was quite excited by what he saw. Marketing director of ProContour? Florian Hitzler.
Just imagine ACPO’s excitement. Hall ran the Essex Speed Camera Partnership and also advises the Home Office, according to Auto Express. ACPO told it the scanner would not be used to put points on driving licences. “It would be used as a screening tool, with a checkpoint beyond.”
ProContour describes its apparatus:ProContour H3-D measures tyre condition – for greater tyre safety in road traffic.
Even in times of chip tuning and electronic brake management, technological progress in tyre monitoring seems to have completely bypassed the vehicle or, in other words, it has not progressed beyond calliper gauges and stationary, optical measuring procedures on tyre test rigs.
ProContour H3-D now offers public authorities, industry, car dealerships a multi-functional and automated measuring system with various system types that measures tyre tread depth, tyre type and, in future, also wear patterns in flowing traffic.
The monitoring and traffic safety system designed for flexible use is based on the principle of laser triangulation. High-speed cameras use tread sensors embedded in the road to record and measure 3-D tyre tread depths in a matter of milliseconds.
To be able to measure tyres at high speeds (up to 120 km/h), the system can also process large data volumes: up to 35,000 images per second or six terabytes per minute...
Schematic passover situation of a 5 axle articulated lorry on company premises: the ProContour H3-D facto even measures of the tyre conditions of several heavy goods vehicles passing over one after the other.
The measurement data is transferred via a data link to the PC station located in an office building on the same premises.
Nothing sinister there. A thoroughly useful piece of equipment. Just don’t let the plods get their hands on it. Still, it’s a pity about the marketing manager.