In This Issue
Field Systems Engineers:
We are pleased to announce the new deep wireless sensor that will soon be available from Sensys Networks, Inc. This new deep sensor is grind resistant. It was developed by Sensys Networks using technology that enables the sensor to be installed at a greater depth (8 inches) while still maintaining the same RF design criteria. This will allow milling activities to take place without affecting the performance of the sensor.
In this issue, we will shine a spotlight on the success of a recent project where Traffic Systems, Inc. installed and Integrated the Sensys Networks wireless detection system at 10 intersections for CTDOT. These wireless sensors, or ‘pucks’ as they are commonly referred to are replacing loop and video detection equipment all over the NY tri-state and New England area. Advantages include speed of install, less MPT costs and also can be leveraged to add data collection features and advanced detection at intersections.
The man who is responsible for all of the ‘hockey puck’ installations for intersection control in the NY tri-state and New England area is Frank DeLucia. Frank has been a part of the Traffic Systems, Inc. family for almost 7 years now. Continue to read about Frank in the Employee Spot Light section of this issue.
Sensys Networks, manufacturers of in-pavement wireless magneto-resistive vehicle detection sensors has deployed over 200,000 flush-mount sensors (aka “pucks”) worldwide. They have helped Transportation Agencies solve typical vehicle detection problems at the intersection and on freeways that several other technologies cannot accomplish. These sensors can be used for stop-bar detection; VOS count stations, queue detection, ramp metering, adaptive control systems, wrong way detection, speed detection, red light enforcement and more.
The pucks are not affected by snow, rain or ice. Horizons, sun glare, shadows, and headlights don’t pose a problem; there are no lenses to clean or zones to re-aim if something should happen to shift slightly. The pucks are incredibly accurate and are not hindered by occlusion; they can provide per vehicle data by lane and have a lifespan of 300,000,000 detections! Since the pucks are wireless there are no lead-in cables that will get cut, unlike an inductive loop. The conduit and pull box requirements are fewer; advance detection requires no power, no cables or trenching. The pucks are minimally invasive and can be removed as necessary/desired for milling if installed with the plastic clamshell cover. They only require a 4” round hole, 2 ½” deep so installation time is a matter of minutes in a single lane which typically results in very low MPT requirements. The puck’s very small footprint also dictates that they can be installed in pavement that has historically been problematic for loops. All of the above results in a detection technology that is simple to install and virtually maintenance free which leads to a low life cycle cost. Therefore we tend to find the typical Sensys user is an Agency that wants to reduce their maintenance burden and prefers simple to install highly accurate and reliable vehicle detection.
Although Sensys Networks has had tremendous success with the flush-mount sensors and they expect that to continue, there is a segment of the Traffic Industry that has shown an interest in the technology yet their preference is a sensor that can be installed in the pavement deeper than a traditional flush-mount sensor. Sensys has addressed these challenges and has developed their latest sensor called the MAG2/GR. This puck is what Sensys refers to as “Grind Resistant”. The GR can be installed up to 8” below the road surface and they do not have to be removed and replaced during most milling operations. MAG2/GR can be utilized for all of the same applications listed earlier. Their next generation Radio Frequency (RF) chipset enables the GR to perform with the same system design parameters as the flush-mount and the sensor operates with identical detection capabilities. The adjacent diagram shows a typical GR installation method for installation into existing pavement which will one day be milled. In this example the GR puck is set at the maximum buried depth of 8”, when the milling operation takes place typically 2 ½" to 3" of pavement are removed and then restored with no adverse effects to the sensor.
Read how Sensys Networks is helping to relieve traffic issues in Washington D.C. at our website: trafficsystemsinc.com/pdf/IMSA.pdf
In 2011, CT DOT faced issues similar to other agencies tasked with upgrading, adding or maintaining signalized intersections - save money, yet get effective results. Remaining open-minded in their ongoing search for answers, they decided to give wireless in-pavement technology a closer look for vehicle detection. Based on presentations and discussions with Traffic Systems staff, it was evident that other states were getting good results from this technology and were saving installation and maintenance costs as compared to using inductive loops or video detection.
CT DOT decided to do an in-house design for a project in 13 towns that was put to bid in the summer of 2012. Sensys Networks (SN) detection technology was chosen for 10 signalized intersections in 9 of the 13 towns.
As the design progressed, CT DOT kept finding ways to expand the effectiveness of the technology beyond just using the sensors for turning lanes. Several locations required advance detection for higher speed traffic, so savings were garnered by eliminating conduit, trenching, hand-holes and pull-boxes. Instead, battery powered repeaters were designed to transmit sensor information wirelessly to the control cabinets. Likewise, these same wireless solutions were used to address a complex design at a town green with considerable overhead utilities.
Some locations had very poor pavement composition on town owned side roads that were unlikely to be improved in the near future, so they were unable to retain any dependable loop detection. Since the SN magnetometers could work in a small amount of substantive pavement, CT DOT was able to provide service until a more expensive repaving could occur. One location even had line-of-sight issues that could interfere with video detection, but the tolerances in the SN equipment allowed mounting of the radios to an untethered span wire, with excellent results.
The contract was awarded to Electrical Contractors, Inc. (ECI) of Hartford, CT, who had never installed SN technology. Nine of the ten locations were installed with excellent results in November 2013, with the tenth delayed to spring 2014 due to an adjacent contract reconstruction. Several staff from the CT DOT design, electrical, construction and signal lab attended and witnessed the installations of the equipment and were impressed with the speed and ease of installation and the quality of results. Even though the ECI crews never performed this type of installation, they were able to efficiently install detection for a single turning lane with three sensors in only 25 minutes using hand-held air hammers with coring bits. This added to the project savings for construction costs and maintenance and protection of traffic.
The nine intersections continue to operate with excellent results, which should lead to further implementations.
Here are several links to learn more about the RPTI project featured in our last newsletter:
It is with great sadness and regret that we report our friend and colleague Marcin Jaworski passed away Tuesday, March 25, 2014 at the age of 36. He fought a strong and courageous fight, and will be greatly missed by his TSI family and friends.
We keep his beautiful wife Magda in our thoughts.
In December of 2007 Francesco “Frank” DeLucia was hired by TSI to bolster our busy field service engineering staff. Less than 6 months later, TSI and Sensys Networks entered into a distributor agreement for the Northeastern US and Frank’s position at TSI suddenly became much more defined.
Frank is a first generation American, and he holds dual citizenship from both the USA and Italy. The majority of his family still resides near Naples, Italy from where both his Mom and Dad emigrated. Frank grew up in Westbury, NY where Italian was the primary language in his home and today he is multilingual being fluent in English, Italian and Spanish. Cooking is Frank’s true passion; so when he isn’t deploying Sensys Networks systems for TSI he can be found in the kitchen or around an open cooking fire listening to classic rock while he creates dishes from his Italian heritage. And he can never pass up a good “Risotto Alla Pescatore”!
So say ciao next time you see Frank DeLucia in the field working on one of our many Sensys installs as we say grazie to Frank for always trying to be a team player and getting the job done right!
May 6-7, 2014 - ITS MA, Boston, MA
May 14-16, 2014 - Northeastern District ITE Annual, Long Branch, NJ
June 12-13, 2014 - ITS NY, Saratoga, NY
July 26-29, 2014 - IMSA's 119th Annual Conference & 37th Annual School, Schaumburg, IL
Aug 10-13, 2014 - ITE Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA
Sept, 2014 - IMSA New York
Sept 7-11, 2014 - ITS America/World Congress, Detroit, MI
Oct 12-15, 2014 - APTA Annual Meeting, Houston, TX
For more information on Traffic Systems, Inc. Visit www.trafficsystemsinc.com or call 631-242-4292 for product specifications.