NHAI seeks global bids for satellite-based electronic toll collection system

India's National Highways Authority (NHAI) is embarking on a groundbreaking journey to modernize toll collection methods across the country's extensive network of National Highways. In a recent announcement, NHAI unveiled its plans to transition towards a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)-based electronic toll collection system, aimed at revolutionizing the tolling experience for commuters.

Under this initiative, NHAI's subsidiary, the Indian Highways Management Company Limited (IHMCL), has issued a Global Expression of Interest (EOI) to solicit innovative proposals from qualified companies worldwide. The goal is to develop and implement an advanced toll collection system that eliminates the need for physical toll booths, ensuring a seamless and barrier-free tolling experience.

The integration of GNSS technology into India's tolling infrastructure is expected to significantly enhance operational efficiency and transparency. NHAI's plan involves integrating the GNSS-based electronic toll collection (ETC) system into the current FASTag ecosystem. Initially, they will adopt a hybrid model, enabling the simultaneous operation of both RFID-based ETC and GNSS-based ETC systems. At the outset, a hybrid approach will be utilized, enabling the simultaneous operation of both RFID-based ETC and GNSS-based ETC systems. This approach ensures a smooth transition and minimal disruption to current toll collection processes.

Dedicated GNSS lanes at toll plazas will enable vehicles equipped with GNSS-based ETC systems to pass through without stopping, further streamlining the tolling process. Moreover, the implementation of the GNSS-based ETC system will introduce distance-based tolling, ensuring that users are charged only for the specific stretches of the National Highway they use.

This innovative toll collection method is poised to offer numerous benefits, including barrier-less free-flow tolling and enhanced revenue collection efficiency. By leveraging GNSS technology, NHAI aims to facilitate smoother vehicle movement along National Highways, marking a significant milestone in India's transportation infrastructure development.

The invitation for global expertise underscores India's commitment to adopting cutting-edge technologies for public infrastructure projects. As the project progresses, it will be fascinating to witness how this technology transforms the everyday commute for millions of Indian highway users.

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