Technical System and Implementation of Toll Collect

Term Paper, 2007

45 Pages, Grade: 1,3


Table of Contents

List of abbreviations

List of figures

List of tables

1 Introduction

2 Road Tolls
2.1 Beginning of toll taking
2.2 Types and aims of road tolling

3 Truck Toll in Germany
3.1 Award procedure and introduction process
3.2 Judicial aspects for toll collection
3.3 Economic aspects of Toll Collect GmbH
3.4 General Survey about the Toll Collect System
3.4.1 Toll amount
3.4.2 Payment methods
3.4.3 Interoperability

4 Technical system/implementation
4.1 Automatic log-on
4.1.1 On-Board Unit (OBU)
4.1.2 Global Positioning System (GPS)
4.1.3 Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM)
4.1.4 DSRC System
4.2 Manual log-on
4.2.1 Log-on at terminal
4.2.2 Log-on via internet
4.2.3 Cancellations

5 Ways of enforcement

6 Conclusion and thoughts for the future



List of abbreviations

illustration not visible in this excerpt

List of figures

Figure 1: Toll collecting in Germany

Figure 2: Automatic log-on procedure

Figure 3: Siemens OBU

Figure 4: Grundig OBU

Figure 5: GSM frame structure

Figure 6: ITS-structure

Figure 7: DSRC frequencies

Figure 8: hazard warning, emergency vehicle warning, intersection collision avoidance

Figure 9: Close-up range communication

Figure 10: Log-on at terminal

Figure 11: Internet log-on

Figure 12: Automatic control

Figure 13: Functionality of control bridges

List of tables

Table 1: Determining the emissions class

Table 2: Emission categories

Table 3: Toll rates per km

1 Introduction

In times of the EU Enlargement Germany has been faced with steadily increasing freight and transit traffic, due to its geographical position in the middle of Europe. The German expressway system has an overall length of approximately 25.000 kilometers (both directions) and therewith is the longest system in Europe [cf. TCUI07, p. 2.]. Overall 1.2 million trucks use the German expressways and cover a total distance of 22.7 trillion kilometers every year [cf. DBL05].

The preservation and further expansion of this system is an important leverage of development for Germany and Europe as a whole. The costs for road construction and maintenance have been rising directly proportional to the transit traffic. Since this burden was only carried by Germany's public, namely by the German citizens' taxes, the Federal Government launched a distance-based toll for all heavy goods vehicles with a total weight of 12 tons or more, driving on German expressways.

This so-called "LKW Maut" came into effect on January 1st, 2005 and is a watershed in financing. For the first time the costs for maintenance are allocated to those who predominantly cause the abrasion. Politics call this a better and fairer financing of the infrastructure. One heavy truck stresses the streets 60.000-times more than a car [cf. BMVBS07, par. 5]. In addition this toll system leads to a higher transport efficiency, which can be seen in the fact that empty return trips went back from over ten to nine percent in 2005, respectively [cf. Bund06, par. 3]. Thereby it also has a positive effect on sustainability. The fee, each truck has to pay, is defined in accordance to the number of axles, the relating emissions class and the distance travelled. Political background of the toll is to shift freight traffic from the roads to railroad and waterways.

Toll Collect GmbH has been responsible for developing a toll system in the name of the Federal Republic of Germany which united GPS technology for satellite-based positioning and GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications). Together with vehicle-installed On- Board Units the system is able to determine the exact position of the trucks and to calculate the toll amount automatically without any need for stops because of personal log-ons for the intended route.

2 Road Tolls

2.1 Beginning of toll taking

The expression toll describes the payment of a certain fee, especially in the context of using streets, bridges or tunnels. Early toll roads are first mentioned in India in the 4th century BC. The Romans even took toll in conquered areas through native tenants. Those people had to pay a fix amount of money to the Roman Empire every year. That was why this system was regularly misused and higher fees were claimed by the tenants. Tolls were used to help financing roads with the money of travelers. Toll bridges and toll gates were easier to control and thus very popular then. [Cf. Wikipedia07a: par. 3]

2.2 Types and aims of road tolling

The technology of toll collection systems has progressed quickly over the last decades, comparing the first manual toll systems in France introduced in the fifties of the last century with today's modern and electronic ones. [Cf. STM07, p.1]

Today there are two types of road tolls in use that have to be differentiated. On the one hand there is access-dependant toll, as applied in Austria or Switzerland for instance. The user has to pay a specified toll for using certain roads or segments no matter how far the traveled distance is. As a mean of realization vignettes are sold, for it is easy to control. On the other hand there is usage-dependant toll. In this case the toll amount is dependent, either on spatial aspects (distance, number of segments, transfers) or on the temporary use of a tolled road. In both cases the toll amount is additionally related with various properties of the user's vehicle as for example the size, weight or number of axles. [Cf. Wikipedia07b: par. 2]

The aims of "modern traffic management" by introducing road tolls are getting more diversified and long-dated in comparison to the beginnings.

In general tolling is used for financing the maintenance of existing infrastructure and for investment in new road projects. The efficient usage of roads (i.e. minimization of empty tours) can be controlled in a better way, since nobody wants to pay more than necessary. This raise in efficiency by charging money has also positive effects on traffic concentration and leads to less CO2-emissions. [Cf. Wikipedia07b: par. 2] Hence human health and the environment are better protected. Future oriented systems as presented by Toll Collect have to meet the need for a fluent and safe traffic and thus account for a sustainable economic growth along with sustainable mobility. [Cf. STM07, p.1]

3 Truck Toll in Germany

3.1 Award procedure and introduction process

The introduction of a distance-based truck toll in Germany has been announced in November 1995 for the first time. In October 1998 the Federal Government of Germany resolved to introduce an "anti traffic jam program", which should be financed by truck toll. [Cf. Wikipedia07c: par. 1]

Finally, in April 2002, the law of introduction of a distance-based truck toll for heavy vehicles came into effect. Three offerers competed in order to get the award for building a toll system in Germany. In the End it was the bidding consortium ETC (Electronic Toll Collect, later Toll Collect) that signed the contract with the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Housing due to a calculated expenditure which was several hundred million euros below the offers of the competitors. [Cf. ELKO07, par. 1; cf. also Wikipedia07c: par.1 et seqq.]

As starting date the 31st of August, 2003 was scheduled, but technical problems with the tracking system prevented the timely introduction [Cf. WDR07]. Hence it was rescheduled to the 2nd of November, 2003. After a meeting in October 2003 between the minister of transport at that time and Toll Collect the introduction was again postponed. In January 2004 Toll Collect presented their new project plans which contained a two-step introduction of the system for the end of 2004 and 2005. [Cf. N-TV07] Toll Collect managed to introduce a limited system in January 2005. The final system with full range of functionality has been operative since 1st of January, 2006.

3.2 Judicial aspects for toll collection

A distance-based toll has been collected on German expressway roads for all trucks with an overall weight of twelve tons or more since 1st of January, 2005. Legal basis is built by the following guidelines and acts.

The German truck toll is fully in accord with the relating aims of the European Commission. Basis for introduction was the guideline 1999/62/EG of the European Parliament, the socalled Euro-vignette-guideline. All comprised specifications about toll amount and the differentiation between emissions classes were considered with the introduction of the truck toll in Germany. [Cf. DBW07, p.1]

On 5th of April, 2002 the German Motorway Toll Act for Heavy Commercial Vehicles (ABGM) was passed and became effective on 12th of April, 2002. On this legal basis the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Housing issued the German Toll Rate Ordinance in June

2003, which regulates the exact toll amount for all trucks. On the same day the German Truck Toll Ordinance was also passed in order to ensure a proper payment and refundment of tolls. Along with the introduction of truck toll in Germany came an increasing traffic on non-expressway roads in order to avoid toll duty. Some residents suffer from these burdens and have to be protected. In January 2007 Toll Collect therefore extended toll liability to some German trunk roads (Bundesstraßen1). The legal basis is the Toll Route Extension

Ordinance of December 2006. [Cf. TCUI07, p.3]

The ABMG defines, that Toll Collect as operator is not only surveilled by the Federal Office for Goods Transport (BAG) but also by the customs. They check whether Toll Collect follows the regulations prescribed in this law. At the same time the ABMG lists, which data is allowed to be collected, saved, used and transferred among each other. [Cf. ABMG02, par. 7]1

3.3 Economic aspects of Toll Collect GmbH

Toll Collect GmbH is a joint venture of Deutsche Telekom AG, DaimlerChrysler Financial Services AG and Cofiroute S.A., a French expressway operator. [TCFAQ07, par. 4]

The shares of business are as follows:

- DaimlerChrysler Services AG 45%
- Deutsche Telekom AG 45%
- Cofiroute S.A. 10%

Toll Collect employs 600 employees, mainly in Berlin and Potsdam. The head offices and the board of directors are located in Berlin, whereas the Service Center is situated in Potsdam. [TCFAQ07, par. 1 et seq.]

3.4 General Survey about the Toll Collect System

The new toll charging system, operated by Toll Collect GmbH is a "Free-Flow-System" which calculates the fee without any speed reductions or stops. It automatically considers the emissions class and the number of axles of the truck for calculation. [Cf. TCPM07, p. 1]

The distance-based toll system for trucks which are intended for freight transport with a total weight of more than twelve tons is a dual system with both automatical and manual log-on possibilities. Therefore it provides a non-discriminating use of the toll-duty road system for truck drivers from Germany as well as from foreign countries. The different ways of loggingon are the following:

- Automatic log-on by means of an On-Board Unit (OBU) in the vehicle,
- Manual log-on at a toll-station terminal,
- Manual log-on using the internet. [Cf. TCPM07, p. 1]

The main pillar of the system is the automatic log-on. An OBU installed in the truck receives GPS signals in order to determine the exact position on one of the 5,400 route segments on roughly 25,000 kilometers of the whole German expressway network. The system also appoints the covered distance of the truck. Afterwards the toll amount is calculated by the OBU on the basis of information about emissions class and number of axles. The collected data is then sent to the data processing center of Toll Collect by wireless radio and will be directly settled with the moving company. [Cf. TCUI07, p. 2]

Another possibility, especially for users that irregularly drive on German toll roads, is the manual log-on. The manual log-on offers two possibilities. Either the intended route is being logged-on at any toll-station terminal or on the internet. [Cf. TCUI07, p. 2]

Both log-on via OBU and via internet require registration of the vehicle with Toll Collect. Once registered, the driver and the company have the possibility to choose between various payment methods. These methods will be explained later in the text. [Cf. TCUI07, p. 2]

There are some toll exemptions that must no be forgotten. Exemptions are made since vehicles do not meet the criteria of toll-liable vehicles. These are vehicles not being intended for freight traffic. Others are the following ones: Motor buses, vehicles of the German army, police, German Federal Agency for Technical Relief (THW), fire brigade, road maintenance and vehicles for fairground and circus purposes to list a big part of exemptions.

Figure 1 gives a complete overview about the Toll Collect system and its components.

Figure 1: Toll collecting in Germany

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: [TCUI07, p.30]

3.4.1 Toll amount

The toll amount for vehicles with an overall weight of more than twelve tons is determined by the German Toll Rate Ordinance with respect to the length of the route, number of axles and the emissions class of the truck. It is the users' duty to make true statements in order to classify the truck correctly. According to the individual emissions classes listed in the Road Traffic Licensing Regulations (StVZO) the trucks are first assigned to one of the three toll categories (A, B, C). This classification is of advantage for truck owners or carriers who are aware of environmental friendly exhaust standards. The toll rates start with € 0.09 and go up to € 0.14 depending on the toll category in combination with the number of axles. [Cf. TCNI07, p.21]

Table 1 shows the categorization of the emissions class displayed at toll station terminal in comparison with the emissions class listed in the vehicle registration certificate of the trucks.

Table 1 : Determining the emissions class

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: [TCUI07, p.22]

* EEV = Enhanced environmental friendly vehicle

According to the determined emissions class the trucks are classified into one of the following toll categories.

Table 2: Emission categories

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: [TCUI07, p.21]

There are six nuances of toll rates to which the toll categories are assigned.

Table 3: Toll rates per km

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: [TCUI07, p.21]

3.4.2 Payment methods

Toll Collect offers various methods in order to settle the toll charges. These methods differentiate between those for registered users and those for non-registered users additionally depending on the individual log-on. Once users have registered with Toll Collect they obtain all available ways of payment:

- Automatic log-on (only available for registered users)
- Payment method with payment guarantee
- Credit account payment
- Manual log-on at a toll station terminal
- Vehicle card (only for registered users)
- EC / credit card; cash; fuel and fleet card account
- Manual log-on via internet (only available for registered users)
- Payment method with payment guarantee
- Credit account paymentTechnical system/implementation

Registered users additionally receive a toll statement every month which contains the overall toll amount for the period under consideration. It is also possible to have the toll statement split up into an "itemized journey list" in order to retrace the single toll amounts. [Cf. TCNI07, p.23-27]

3.4.3 Interoperability

The experiences gained from the buildup of Toll Collect are fully transferable to other electronic toll systems all over the world. The usage and expansion of this key technology is right at its beginning. The council of the EU basically recommends satellite-based toll systems because of the considerable advantages. The aim is one collective OBU for all toll systems in Europe. Toll Collect is already prepared for this giant leap. The system of Toll Collect also fulfils the technical requirements to support other systems since it is able to integrate "old" systems based on microwaves, for instance in Austria, via the utilized DSRC-module (Dedicated Short Range Communication) which is able to transmit signals via infrared and via microwaves. Interoperability of the different systems is necessary in order to avoid that trucks will have to carry several technical devices. Today only the German OBU can be used for other systems, whereas foreign OBUs cannot be used for the German system. The European Commission requires that future toll systems have to based on GPS and GSM technology. Fully DSRC systems have to be adjusted in order to be prepared for the aimed

European-wide solution. It is due that the German toll system will have a crucial part in developing a Europe-wide standard. The system will also be fully compatible with the forthcoming European satellite system Galileo, which will replace GPS in 2011, primarily in commercial and scientific functions. [Cf. STM07, p.5]


1 See TCUI07, p. 5 for new toll-liable segments.

2 The data namely is: 1. picture of vehicle, 2. name of driver, 3. place and time expressway usage, 4. license number of vehicle 5. necessary features of the vehicle for toll amount.

Excerpt out of 45 pages


Technical System and Implementation of Toll Collect
Reutlingen University  (Produktionsmanagement)
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
File size
1210 KB
Toll, Collect, GPS, LKW Maut, expressway
Quote paper
Sebastian Wagner (Author), 2007, Technical System and Implementation of Toll Collect, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


  • No comments yet.
Read the ebook
Title: Technical System and Implementation of Toll Collect

Upload papers

Your term paper / thesis:

- Publication as eBook and book
- High royalties for the sales
- Completely free - with ISBN
- It only takes five minutes
- Every paper finds readers

Publish now - it's free