Astun Technology’s Open Source and web mapping expertise is at the heart of Exactrak’s newly released tracking and monitoring solution for local authorities. Astun not only provides the web interface and core mapping technology but also hosts the Ordnance Survey maps used by the application.
Exactrak is the leading supplier of web-based tracking and monitoring systems for specialist local authority highways maintenance vehicles, including gritters, gully cleaners, road sweepers, refuse trucks and white van fleets. In 2011 Exactrak was looking to update its core system architecture to deliver improved system performance together with enhanced capabilities and efficiencies for both itself and its customers. The core system provides a unique realtime tracking monitoring and reporting solution that improves the operational efficiency of vehicle fleets and provides a defence against insurance claims by automatically recording the status and location of events without driver intervention. The system also sports additional features such as pre-programmed route navigation, automated control of gritting, real time mapping and reporting.
Along with changes to the core web application the provision of OS Mapping has been entirely re-engineered by Astun with all maps now hosted in the ‘Cloud’ using Astun Data Services. Astun worked closely with Ordnance Survey to enable a ‘Cloud’ based hosting solution including the development of a special loader to enable a range of PSMA(Public Sector Mapping Agreement) and Open Data to be loaded into a PostGIS Open Source database. The key datasets are the OS MasterMap® Integrated Transport Layer(ITN) OS MasterMap® Topography Layer, OS Strategi, OS Meridian 2 and OS VectorMap® Local. These are delivered to Exactrak’s core application using a range of Open Source technologies including tilecaching for optimum performance. Under previous arrangements the mapping element took several weeks each year to update. Now this entirely handled by Astun.
“As well as delivering much improved performance we are relieved of the considerable map management task which was also a considerable expense,” said Mark Willcox Exactrak’s General Manager. “This solution provides our Local Authority customers with the precision of OS MasterMap and beautiful screen based maps at every level of zoom. System users receive continual and seamless mapping updates with split screen views including aerial photography and street view portals. This provides a more user friendly approach, with functionality driven from the main mapping screens. Reporting and activity charts are fully integrated with street level mapping to gain maximum precision from our high accuracy positional data. The use of Open Source technology means a saving in software license fees and the solution is both scalable and resilient,” continued Willcox.