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Smart Parking Sensors – UK & Ireland

Smart Parking sensors are intelligent IoT nodes that are installed in parking spaces, or within road-side spaces, and are able to detect the presence of a parked vehicle. The sensors can then trigger events for use with intelligent parking apps or for intelligent parking enforcement. Manx Technology Group can design and supply Smart Parking solutions for parking applications in the UK or Ireland, including the sensors, LoRaWAN network, back-office systems and Smart Parking Apps.

Upon detecting the presence of a vehicle, the sensors trigger an event, before sending data to a remote application server wirelessly. Smart parking nodes (sensors) are installed into a parking space and are battery-powered. Data from the nodes is sent using the LoRaWAN radio to a remote gateway (with a range of up to 5-10KM in normal conditions).

The Smart Parking nodes have accurate detection capabilities due to the use of a radar sensor that can accurately detect vehicles positioned above the device.

The following table shows a comparison of Smart Parking sensor technologies available:

Radar Infra-red Magnetism
Reliability against nearby vehicle movement Yes Yes No
Reliability against nearby parked vehicles Yes Yes No
Reliability against electromagnetic interferences Yes Yes No
Reliability in any lighting scenario Yes No Yes
Stability during long-duration vehicle stays Yes Yes No
Do not need an aperture in enclosure Yes No Yes
Immunity against dirt or dust on enclosure Yes No Yes

Node provisioning

The Smart Parking nodes can be configured locally, or for more flexibility – they can be provisioned using OTA (over the air) provisioning. OTA allows the operator to configure node parameters such as sleep-time, keep-alive and night-mode and push the settings remotely.

Network Topology

The Smart Parking sensors utilise LoRaWAN radios, and to function – the system requires LoRaWAN gateways, a network server and an application server.

  • Once an event is triggered, the nodes send an event wirelessly using LoRaWAN, to a LoRaWAN Gateway.
  • The communication between the parking node and the LoRaWAN gateway is secured using encryption.
  • Once received by the gateway, the frame is forwarded to a LoRaWAN Network Server (i.e. Things Network, Loriot).
  • The Network Server then forwards the data to an application server. Libelium has a product called the Libelium Smart Parking Cloud Service or alternatively, the customer may choose to develop their own.

Smart Parking Sensor Events

When the Smart Parking Node detects the presence of a vehicle or a change in status (i.e. free/occupied), the node sends a frame to the LoRaWAN base station.

Hardware Description

Libelium Smart Parking Sensor
The robust, weather-proof and vandal-proof casing of the Libelium Smart Parking node.

Libelium Smart Parking Sensor
The internals of the Smart Parking Node. You can see the PCB, battery and radio.

The Node is made up of two main items; the base and the external enclosure. The Base includes the PCB, Battery, antenna and internal enclosure. The dimensions are 200mm diameter and 37.25mm in height.


The Nodes are available with LoRaWAN radios suitable for different regions including EU, US, APAC, LATAM, AU and India.

Applications for Smart Parking in the UK

There is a range of applications that can benefit from Smart Parking, including:

  • On-street parking.
  • Monitoring of disabled parking spaces.
  • Monitoring of Electric Vehicle (EV) spaces.
  • Loading bays.
  • ‘Find parking space’ apps.
  • Reserved spaces.
  • Car parks.

Further technical information

For advanced technical information relating to frame payload, configuration parameters, night-mode and other advanced features, please review the Libelium technical guide 

More information

If you would like to learn more about Libelium Smart Parking sensors, the possible applications or if you have any technical or implementation questions, please speak to our IoT solutions team. They can be reached by e-mailing sales@mtg.im, calling +44 1624 777837 or clicking the ‘Request a Quote’ button on the right of our website.

Further reading:



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Joe Hughes is the CEO of Manx Technology Group. Joe has a background in software development, information security, networks, datacentres and enterprise IT.

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