Product • 30.04.2009

New onboard unit for buses and trains

The new on-board unit.
The new on-board unit.

Hoeft & Wessel introduces a new onboard unit for buses and trams. The almex.optima cl integrates ticket printer and onboard computer function perfectly into a single compact unit. The device handles contactless E-tickets conforming to VDV-KA, ITSO and Calypso as well as barcode tickets and “handy tickets”, and it supports extensive telematics solutions.

As well as featuring robust technology, particular care was taken in the design of the almex.optima cl to create a user-friendly interface for both passengers and for the driver. The perfect ergonomics of the new integrated onboard computer also impressed the jury for the Universal Design Award. At the CeBIT 2009, they gave the almex.optima cl the first prize in the category “Public Areas”.

For the first time, all the interface elements in the passenger group were consistently arranged with the passenger in mind. At a glance, passengers can see the various functions such as the reader for contactless E-tickets conforming to VDV-KA, ITSO, or Calypso, and NFC-capable mobile phones. Also perfectly integrated is a chip card reader for prepaid cards, and an image scanner capable of reading 2D barcodes off paper and mobile phone displays. The new arrangement of interface elements allows passengers to identify and use these functions with ease. This reduces boarding times and speeds up the circuit times for the vehicles.

The same convenience applies to the interface elements for the driver. The large 8.4” colour touch screen can be adjusted vertically to suit the individual preferences of each driver. The new onboard unit is complemented with a payment counter for selling tickets for cash. Optional add-ons for the payment counter are a cash tester lamp for inspecting banknotes, and an electronic locking mechanism for the cash float that is controlled directly via the almex.optima cl.

The onboard computer uses the Windows CE operating system. The communications module supports WLAN, GSM/GPRS/EDGE and therefore meets all the standards required for fast transmission of driver billing and ticket pricing data, as well as for integration into the Intermodal Transport Control Systems ITCS, such as almex.VABnet sold by Hoeft & Wessel.

Data communication with the almex.optima cl and production of reports for evaluation and analysis are handled by the back-office system almex.office. A comprehensive range of services ensures a high degree of availability of the overall system for the public transport company.  Almex, part of the Hoeft & Wessel Group, specialises in ticketing and telematics applications for the public transport segment.

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