Over the years, IB has helped MDOT integrate a vast amount of traffic devices and equipment as well as provide maintenance services to maximize the lifespan of the ITS technologies. But even with the best maintenance, there comes a time – be it end of life, end of sale, or end of support – when devices and equipment are no longer viable and an upgrade is inevitable. In anticipation of this, IB teamed with two consulting firms to develop strategies for MDOT to modernize devices and equipment effectively and efficiently.
To do this, IB focused efforts on evaluating network communication and fiber optic equipment that MDOT has deployed. Among others, these devices and equipment included:
- Wireless radios
- Ethernet switches
- Cellular and Cable Modems
- Media Converters
- Fiber Optic Cables
- Fiber Optic Hardware Assemblies
- Underground Fiber Optic Splice Enclosures
IB worked with device and equipment manufacturers to determine manufacture dates, product warranty terms, product availability, mean time between failure statistics, end-of-sale, end-of-support, and end-of-life dates. IB collected and aggregated this information for the devices and equipment that MDOT has deployed to develop a comprehensive scoring system for assessing the risk associated with each component. This risk assessment scoring system was then used to evaluate which devices and equipment should be prioritized for modernization.
The risk assessment scoring system used a scale of 1 to 4, with 4 being highest priority for modernization. Primary criteria for calculating a risk assessment score included obsolescence, age, and condition of the devices and equipment at issue. Devices and equipment that were technologically obsolete, significantly aged, or in poorer condition were prioritized for modernization. Devices and equipment that featured modern technologies, were comparatively new installations, or were in better condition were assigned a lower risk score. Additionally, the project team considered operational importance determined by MDOT as a factor in calculation. Devices and equipment that MDOT viewed as more important than others were given higher priority over devices and equipment considered by MDOT to be less critical. This ensured that MDOT was able to have a voice in determining which devices and equipment were prioritized for modernization in consideration of its views on operational importance.
Using the risk assessment scoring system, the project team was then able to make recommendations to MDOT on a timeline for device modernization. The timeline detailed which devices and equipment should be modernized within the next year, two years, three years, and so on. Devices and equipment with higher risk scores were recommended for modernization sooner, and those with lower risk scores were recommended for later modernization. The project team also advised MDOT on the probable cost of modernization for each recommendation. These recommendations will allow MDOT to plan ahead for device and equipment modernization in terms of priority, job size, and overall cost.