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Communications and Power Improvements for Rural ITS Field Devices - Showcase Evaluation #10

Started: April, 2002 Ended: December, 2003 Project ID #426324 Status: Completed


This evaluation project documents case studies of innovative solution for addressing the communications and power needs of ITS field devices to be deployed in the rural environment.


The COATS project sought to bring the capability of ITS to bear on addressing transportation problems in a bi-state rural area. Intelligent transportation systems use advanced computer, electronics and communications technologies to improve the operation of the surface transportation system. These technologies are most effective when supported by an integrated contiguous communications and power infrastructure. In fact, it is often true that the capabilities of ITS are limited by the availability of supporting infrastructure rather than electronics or computational capability. Many rural areas often lack an integrated communications or power infrastructure that could support the deployment of ITS. Communications (both wireline and wireless) and power infrastructure are generally provided by private-sector firms, which invest in new infrastructure according to their firm’s best interests. Agencies interested in deploying ITS field elements like kiosks, closed-circuit television cameras, road weather information systems (RWIS), variable message signs and others will exploit this infrastructure to the extent possible. Where the requirements associated with a specific ITS field element differ from that which is supportable by the existing infrastructure, agencies will typically be forced to improvise a solution. As agencies deploy more technologies in rural areas that are isolated from the communications infrastructure or the power grid, there may be a rich repository of experience that can help to guide future deployment. By building upon the lessons of past deployments, the reliability and effectiveness of future ITS deployments may be significantly improved.


Files & Documents

Sponsors & Partners

  • Research and Innovation Technology Administration (RITA) Sponsor
  • California Department of Transportation (CALTRANS) Co-Sponsor
  • Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) Sponsor

Part of: Safety and Operations

Project Tagged In: traveler information and communication systems, Rural Transportation, Communication Systems

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