The VRSiMM system comprises of 2 networked pc systems, the first is an instructor control station, and the second system is the student interface with the synthetic managed motorway controls. The instructor initially loads a midas loop dataset from a specific day and then can choose the time of day that he would like the simulation to begin.

The student end of the system has controls to monitor the motorway through the simulated camera network and can alter lane speeds and request to start procedures for opening the hard shoulder at busier times. Whilst the simulation is running the instructor has controls to instigate specific events or alter weather conditions that will directly affect the simulation events that will require a response from the trainee.


The aim of the project was to produce a realistic prototype that will include a workstation similar to that used by controllers – including the ability to select CCTV images from any of the 200+ cameras located on the route and data displays on traffic volumes and speeds.

The traffic flow model created by teaming partner Risk Solutions used sample MIDAS loop data to accurately simulate the traffic flow, however the instructor station has the ability to alter environmental factors such as traffic flow on and off at any of the junctions, alter weather conditions and even simulate a broken down vehicle causing extra hazards which all directly affect the general flow of the simulation.

Maelstrom were responsible for the creation of the simulated environment featuring over 19km of the M42 from junctions 3a to 7 as well as creating a vast array of vehicle types for use in the simulation.


- Simulation started by loading day specific MIDAS loop data.
- Select time of day, & weather conditions.
- Edit traffic flow data at junctions.
- Edit events to be managed by student during simulation.
- Simulation runs and instructor triggers events.
- student has to monitor the motorways using the CCTV camera views on both north & southbound carriageways.
- System can simulate breakdowns, debris in road and Traffic officer vehicles.
- Open & close hard shoulder running through series of conditioned checks.
- Change electronic traffic signals & speed restriction signage.
- Automated lane control based on simulated traffic flow.