1) What is a Robotic parking system?
An automated parking system, also known as APS, is a patented technology and a mechanical system that its role is to enable the parking of hundreds or even several thousands of cars in almost half the area of a conventional parking style. A robotic parking system has been designed to provide multiple levels vertically stacked parking lots in order to maximize the number of parking spaces in a given parking area. This technique has been proven to successfully eliminate much of the space wasted in a multi-level parking. Robotic parking systems are also known by a variety of other names such as automated parking facility, mechanical parking…
1.2) where is it used?
Architects and developers are investing a considerable amount of time and effort into turning this system into urban, commercial and even industrial system. The Robotic parking system can be used in office spaces, residential apartments, and five-star hotels.
2) How does it work?
2.1) Steps of parking and receiving a car
There are two major issues with every an automated parking system or any other type of parking: parking a car and retrieving it.
2.1.1) Steps for parking a car:
- The first step is to drive the car into the robotic parking garage. Since APS can be used in residential apartments and urban places, it can easily blend with any neighborhood or project.
- The next step is to drive the car into the parking terminal (parking lot), the terminal is equipped with various sensors that will ensure the proper position of the car.
- The third step, is very simple, after parking the car in the convenient parking terminal, the driver simply leaves and locks the car. Due to its automized parking system, there is no need to drive through the garage to find a parking space.
- The fourth step is to receive a parking card. The card will be used for retrieving the car at a later time.
- The fifth step which is the last step of parking the car is where the difference between traditional and automated parking style becomes most obvious and relevant. A computerized machinery picks up the car, lifts, and places it inside the building on a shelving system.
2.1.2) Retrieving the Car
Steps for retrieving a car are as the followings:
- The first step into retrieving the parked car is to put the parking card into the kiosk.
- The second step is to go to the terminal where the car will be retrieved, a screen will display the exact location.
- The third step is that The Robotic Parking Systems will deliver the car facing forward so that it is safer and easier to exit the garage.
- The final step is extremely simple, just leave the terminal and the garage.
2.2) Components and specifications of Automated parking systems
The robotic parking system components can be classified and divided into 4 modules: Robot module, Entrance Module, Elevator Module and finally the control Module:
2.2.1) Robot Module
A robot module is simply the combination of a Shuttle and a Transporter.
2.2.2) Entrance Module
The Entrance Module is composed of a turn plate and a car measurement system. The entrance Box can either round or of rectangular Type.
2.2.3) Elevator Module
This module is responsible for the elevation of the car.
2.2.4) Control Module
This module is the mind of the automated parking system and similar to any computerized system, it is composed of two major parts, the software, and the hardware. The Robotic parking system can also contain other features and options such as a car washing station.
3) Pros and Cons of using the Automated Parking System (APS)
3.1) Advantages of using APS
There is a reason why the Automated Parking System is taking over traditional parking. Here are some of the advantages of using APS:
3.1.1) Space Saving
- By consuming almost only half the space of a conventional parking garage, the APS can fit more cars and still conserve open space while reducing expensive excavation.
- With the elimination of ramps, driving lanes and pedestrians, an APS requires substantially less structural material than the multi-story traditional parking garage.
Since the robotic parking system requires an area approximately 70% smaller than the traditional multi-story parking garages, it leaves more room for developers to include more options such as washing stations, green space, or simply more parking lots.
3.1.3) Feasibility and Profitability
APS enables a parking to be located in areas where a conventional parking won’t fit. In addition to that, automated garages substantially reduce noise and light pollution.
3.1.4) Security and safety
The fact that APS removes driving and pedestrians from the parking area, automated parking systems are much safer and secure for both cars and drivers because they eliminate car accidents and car or vehicle components theft.
3.1.5) Other Considerations
- Automated Parking Systems can reduce CO2 emissions by up to 85% or even more by simply eliminating the need for cars to drive while searching for parking spaces.
- APS enhances and improves the handicap access
- It minimizes ventilation and lighting systems
- It eliminates scrapes and dents that are caused by parking mistakes
In Conclusion, APS systems are eco-friendly, safer, and more efficient than traditional parking systems and garages.
3.2) Disadvantages of Using ASP
While, Automated Parking Systems are extremely efficient and useful; however, they still have their own problems and limitations such as:
- APS can be confusing for unfamiliar users.
- Automated parking systems are not recommended for high peak hour volume facilities such as stadiums or theatres.
- The cost of construction per space is greater than regular parking buildings.
Automated parking systems may have their own limitations; however, their advantages are far greater and have a great potential in the future. Considering the APS advantages, Robotic Parking Systems are the largest automatic parking facilities in the whole world reaching a higher peak traffic capacity.