Rivals meet to discuss 'single source of truth at an intersection'

Panel at Imsa will feature Q-Free, Yunex Traffic, Cubic, Oriux, Econolite & Swarco McCain
Enforcement / June 14, 2023
By Adam Hill
Traffic controllers intersection safety data sharing © ITS International | Adam Hill
Agencies hoping to integrate solutions from multiple controller vendors should listen in (© ITS International | Adam Hill)

All six of the main North American traffic signal controller manufacturers - Q-Free, Yunex Traffic, Cubic, Oriux, Econolite, and Swarco McCain - are to discuss how best to safeguard intersection controllers while creating a secure network capable of handling the growing demand of data sharing and connectivity. 

The US National Electrical Manufacturer Association (Nema) will moderate the 'unprecedented' panel discussion at the International Municipal Signal Association (Imsa) 2023 Forum and Expo in Reno, Nevada.

Nema was responsible for creating the shared NTCIP protocols that define common management information bases (MIBs).

MIBs provide a common language through which central traffic management systems and transportation management devices communicate - but they are not comprehensive and do not cater for the technical advances that are constantly made to the systems.

The FREEtheMIBs campaign, started by Q-Free, argues that transport authorities’ options are being limited by the lack of interoperability between various suppliers’ equipment and that this can effectively lock them into a single supplier and elevated pricing.

“The controller is the safety critical single source of truth at an intersection and communicating with the controller via a management information base –or MIB– is a key enabler in that process,” said Steve Griffith, executive director, transportation systems and cybersecurity, Nema.

“This panel will feature experts from these manufacturers discussing what it means when they share their MIBs.”
Griffith will moderate the 90-minute panel with Trisha Tunilla, advisory board chair of FREEtheMIBS, on Tuesday, 27 June 2023 at 10:30am (PT).

Panelists include:
•    Patrick Marnell, Director of Product Management, Q-Free 
•    Michael Gaertner, Vice President Products & Systems and DevOps, Yunex Traffic
•    Shaun Alford, Product Manager at Cubic Transportation Systems 
•    Ray Deer, Chief Technology Officer, Oriux
•    Tom Stiles, Vice President, Econolite
•    Matt Zinn, Senior Applications Engineer, Swarco McCain 
Imsa executive director Toby Cummings says: "For the first time ever, a six-member panel of industry leaders is presenting as a unified group to deliver content to those in the field."
The organiser says the session is "ideal for technicians looking to gain a larger understanding of how controllers 'talk' to other devices; and agencies hoping to integrate solutions from multiple controller vendors or looking to leverage real-time signal data with third-party applications". 
Nema will also host a webinar discussion with the same panel on Thursday, 27 July 2023, at 1:00pm (ET). Details to follow.

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