Smart Video & Sensing Ltd (SVS) have installed a dedicated Tunnel Detection Test Bed at Southwick Hill Tunnel on behalf of Highways England’s ITS Group, part of the Safety, Engineering & Standards Directorate. SVS worked collaboratively with tunnel managers A-one+, Highways England and other subcontractors to deliver this prestigious project ahead of time and on budget.

SVS Ltd have the contract to design, supply, manage and operate the testbed for Highways England.

Southwick Hill Tunnel is twin bore, two lanes per bore, and is on the busy A27 just outside Brighton, Sussex. The test bed will allow suppliers of any detection equipment to have their equipment evaluated by Highways England in a live environment. The testbed is also available to help suppliers develop new detection technology prior to requesting evaluation.

To ensure driver and tunnel security and safety, the test bed is totally independent of the existing tunnel control systems and has its own fibre network and web accessible user Operator Interface. The test bed consists of:
• Two bores of 500 metres (east and west bound);
• 18 test locations spaced at 50 metre intervals (9 in each bore);
• Capability of 36 individual test devices at any one time;
• Dedicated validation CCTV at each test location;
• Dedicated fibre network;
• User web access to their own equipment and tunnel detection logs, etc.;
• Fully managed installation and decommissioning process.

An Operator Interface (OIF) stores all alert messages and the associated information for retrieval at later times. The OIF Histogram function has the ability to search by date, time, system, etc. The database is adequate to store all information for the test period and uses a common atomic clock for all data logging and time comparisons. The test bed OIF has web browser enabled access to allow supplier users authorised by Highways England to view the OIF and test bed system remotely; this access will aid assessment of the systems under test and reduce information transfer time.
The remote access is via secure log on ID and password authentication. The access, controlled by the Highways England Project Sponsor, and applications for access or removal of access privileges is via a sign-off process.
Any equipment, regardless of type, can use the test bed system but must be compatible with the permanent test bed.

To apply to have equipment evaluated by Highways England or for development time using the
Highways England Tunnel Detection Test Bed at Southwick Hill Tunnel, or for any information
regarding the test bed please contact:

Highways England: Ben Catchesides Tel: 03004704132
Smart Video & Sensing: Peter Eccleson Tel: 02392248250