Autovelox is the name originally given by Telefunken, to the first model of speed detector. In Germany, its serial production and its use by the police began in 1957. In Italy, the Autovelox was introduced only 15 years later and, although over the years, several manufacturers have marketed their detectors. In spite of the continuous improvements that technology has allowed to bring, by definition, motorists have always and in any case defined it as “speed cameras”.
To be precise, however, a distinction should be made between photocell, radar and laser devices, between fixed and mobile models, between detectors that take photos and those that record video. But how does the speed camera work? However, the basic principle is the same for all models.
This is the well-known formula according to which the speed of any object is equal to the ratio between the distance traveled and the time taken to travel this distance. If the speed “read” by the detector is higher than that allowed by the highway code, the detector takes a photo of the license plate and the administrative sanction starts.
The most common: the operation of the photocell speed camera. Due to its greater diffusion compared to other models, in Italy the main detector could be considered the so-called “photocell speed camera”. In most cases it can be found positioned inside fixed orange columns on the sides of roads (for example, at the entrance to a built-up area, or near a school). However, there are also mobile versions that the police can place wherever necessary, with the use of a tripod or inside their service car.
As the name implies, it is equipped with two photocells that detect the passage of the car. The first, which is triggered when the front part of the car passes, starts a timer that stops when it passes by the second photocell.In case of speeding, the device is able to take a photo of the license plate. In older models, photos are regularly taken by law enforcement;
In the more advanced ones, the digital image taken from the speeding car can be sent both to a patrol positioned downstream of the detector for immediate notification of the infringement, and to the brigade or carabinieri barracks. There are also models, called Photored, which are used to detect traffic light infringements: in the event of a red crossing, sensors inserted in the asphalt are activated and allow you to take a photo of the license plate.