Signals architecture was demonstrated to selected representatives of FWHA, universities, consultants, and manufacturers of traffic controllers at the TRB Signals Systems committee 2005 mid-year meeting in Las Vegas NV. There was good agreement among those who attended the demonstration that the DSN approach was the logical next step, because the existing central computer approach is I/O bound due to the physical size of the control cabinet. The space requirements for the controller cabinet is in a large part due to the physical size of the load switches and connectors that terminate the wires to the signals around the intersection as specified by the NEMA TS2 standard. The DSN architecture eliminates this requirement by using solid state (LED) signals that can be switched with low power integrated circuits and requiring only, at most, six conductors to service an intersection regardless of number of signals or sensors.
The next step in the development of the PnP DSN is to develop a full size model. The PIs will sponsor an interdisciplinary senior design team to design and build this model. An existing TS2 controller that has a Ethernet type output that communicates using the NTCIP format will interface to traffic signals and sensors via a protocol translation processor. It our vision that the translation processor will eventually be eliminated when controller algorithms are embedded in an IEEE 1451 compliant network capable processor.