A new ‘parking patch’ is being developed to help car owners find empty parking spaces in busy areas.

The parking patch was developed by “Deteq Solutions” at the Sussex Innovation Centre, which is based on campus.

According to CEO Adrian Bone, the aim was to create a patch that would be able to detect whether a parking space is free or occupied without having to be attached to the car.

Instead of fitting vehicles with special equipment, the road surface of the parking space will be modified.

These detectors will be attached to the ground of every parking bay to help detect whether the space is available.

The sensors were developed at the University of Essex in Colchester.

Deteq Solutions is unable to fully explain how the sensors will work as they are currently applying for a patent for their invention.

However, it is clear that the tool will communicate with a base station wirelessly, using a mesh network to send information to neighbouring devices.

Car drivers and traffic wardern will benefit from this.

They currently use Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags to check the validity of tickets using handheld readers, but the new device will raise the alarm if drivers park in no-stopping areas, directing wardens straight to the parking offender.

The parking patch will be tested in a trial at the University of Sussex.

The device can also work in combination with the RFID tags and a smartphone application.

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