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General News | Feb 10, 2005

Ashesi students develop Java Traffic Light

GhanaWeb Correspondent

Accra, Feb. 10 - A traffic light system developed by students of Ashesi University in Accra to solve the heavy traffic congestion on the La-Teshie dual carriageway intersection, near the La-Palm Beach Hotel, was launched in Accra on Thursday. The Java software controlled traffic light system estimated at 100,000 dollars operates using a "javelin stamp" and an ultrasonic sensor to efficiently and flawless direct traffic on the dual carriageway into a single lane.

The programme, which is part of a project work of the third year students of the University, requires them to use Java Software Programming and Discrete Mathematic knowledge to solve real life problems in society.

Giving the background to the project, Professor Sitsofe E. Anku of the Computer Science Department of the University said the traffic light could perform the role of a policeman by controlling the heavy traffic on the intersection. He said the chip in the light could also act as the eye that could merge the traffic on the La-Teshie road into a single lane.

Prof. Anku said the chip could be re-programmed to suit any traffic on the road at any time of year.

Mr Obinna Brandon Chuko, a third year Computer Science student, said an intelligent sensor, an advertising component and civic messages had been incorporated into the new traffic light system, making it unique as compared to other traffic devices in the country. He said the sensor could detect traffic ahead by sending beams to the system that would be indicated by the red light and when the traffic eased, the green light would appear.

Mr Ckoku said the advertising devise would help provide funds to maintain the project. He called for collaboration between the industrial sector and the Universities to help bring some of these innovations to fruition.

Mrs Eva Lokko, Director-General of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation, commended the students for their ingenuity in coming out with this model. She called for the application of science and technology in solving some of the basic problems affecting the country.

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