Building a Freeway Laboratory for Connected Vehicle and Traffic Safety Research and Development
Thursday, April 19, 2018
About the Presentation
New disruptive technologies like vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication have the potential to change the future of transportation in a revolutionary way. Much like the seat belt and airbags in the past, V2V/V2I-equipped vehicles are quickly becoming an industry standard with the aim of further improving driver safety. Unlike seat belts and airbags, however, the aim of V2V/V2I communication is not to help drivers survive crashes but to avoid them. V2V/V2I-capable vehicles—often referred to as connected vehicles (CVs)—capitalize on technologies like GPS, in-vehicle sensors, roadway sensors, and wireless communication to broaden the information available to the driver/vehicle unit.
This presentation described the development and deployment of instrumentation and software to create a laboratory for CV application development and testing as well as fundamental research on driver behavior and traffic flow theory. Capitalizing on the existing I-94 Field Lab located in the I-94/I-35W “commons” in downtown Minneapolis—and with the support of the Roadway Safety Institute and MnDOT—a new, radar-based vehicle detection and traffic measurement collection infrastructure has been established. Specifically, the objective of this effort was to create a testbed for CVs and expanding infrastructure-based systems into the CV realm.
As part of this effort, seven radar stations have been deployed along a half-mile stretch of I-94 westbound. The stations collect high-resolution vehicle trajectory data for every vehicle that passes through the corridor, thereby providing data on the location and speed of individual vehicles for the length of the observed section. Each radar station is paired with a dedicated camera currently for calibration and validation purposes, but also to allow development of hybrid vehicle detection and tracking algorithms in the future. The data collection infrastructure is supported by a comprehensive data warehousing and dissemination software architecture, which allows continuous collection and storage of all collected measurements in an efficient online database as well as a real-time shared memory space used by real-time applications.
About the Speaker
John Hourdos is the director of the Minnesota Traffic Observatory at the University of Minnesota. His research interests are traffic simulation and model calibration, as well as traffic safety focusing on analysis and crash prevention.