Montana’s capital deploys Intuicom’s wireless system for school safety initiative


With 17 schools and two seats of higher education spread over an area of approximately 16 square miles, Montana’s state capital required a method of connecting its network of school zone warning equipment, as part of a student safety program.

In response to the high cost and extended time of physically connecting the city of Helena’s network of school-zone flashing beacons, the city authorities elected to deploy a wireless system that can be controlled remotely. The city selected Intuicom Inc, a premier supplier of wireless solutions to the intelligent transportation systems (ITS) market, and is deploying the company’s DIO Wireless Transceivers as the communications foundation supporting its student safety initiative.

The drive to incorporate wireless communications into school-zone traffic control strategies is based on three major motivations:

• Budget – At a fraction of the costs of fiber, and the expense of trenching and deploying hardwire or fiber, broadband wireless communication is becoming the preferred conduit for fiber interconnects and extensions for agencies and municipalities confronted with staggering growth and stagnant budgets

• Convenience – Wireless communication devices can be installed with minimal, if any, physical disruption to roadways and commuters. Units can be pre-configured prior to deployment to expedite installation, and advanced wireless network management tools enable administrators to discover, configure and optimize the performance of their wireless networks remotely for added awareness and control. Unlike pre-timed systems, DIOs can be remotely managed and controlled for a heightened level of administrative control of their operation

• Scalability – Unlike the physical limitations inherent in hardwired networks, broadband wireless networks can be expanded, redirected or repurposed as the demands of the network or situations dictate

The Intuicom DIO Wireless Transceiver is a high-performance wireless contact closure for on-off and detection applications. Designed for short- and long-range error-free communications, the DIO delivers complete bi-directional wireless I/O (input/output) capability for point-to-point, point-to-multipoint and multipoint-to-multipoint applications. With its ease of deployment, many agencies have found that Intuicom’s DIO is a cost-effective alternative to hardwire, fiber and other RF (radio frequency) solutions. The DIO unit provides bi-directional communication with 16 individual channels – eight input and eight output – for a virtually limitless number of I/O routing possibilities, including positive confirmation of command execution.

Operating in the 900MHz or 2.4GHz frequency band, and employing Intuicom’s robust and secure frequency-hopping spread spectrum technology, the DIO is inherently resistant to interference from other RF equipment. It is capable of delivering the maximum output power allowable by the FCC for unlicensed operation, providing exceptional performance at up to 60 miles (96km) range (LOS). Designed with a simple and easy setup using Intuicom’s CommPro software, the DIO is an excellent plug-and-play device for rapid integration.

“The safety of our children is a priority we all understand and embrace,” commented Tom Foley, CEO and president of Intuicom. “With the remote control functionality of our devices, administrators are freed from pre-timed configurations, and can adjust timing and operation remotely for increased convenience, responsiveness and, in turn, effectiveness.”

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About Author


Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).