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Spring 2019 Vol. 6, No. 1

Research explores ways to improve GPS accuracy for traffic safety applications

rural road

Lane-departure or lane-keeping systems have the potential to greatly improve driver safety. However, the Global Positioning System (GPS) technology needed to make them widespread has yet to be perfected. A lane-keeping system needs to have an extremely accurate GPS, but those systems are expensive and must be installed in the factory. To help make these systems available for a wider public, RSI researchers are exploring ways to improve the accuracy of less expensive antennas.

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Better prediction of train arrival times promises safety benefits

rail crossing

Photo: Shutterstock

A new model developed by Roadway Safety Institute researchers can more accurately predict train arrival times at railroad crossings—a finding with both safety and congestion-relieving benefits. Incidents at highway-rail grade crossings are a serious safety challenge: in 2015, there were nearly 3,000 collisions between vehicles and trains at grade crossings, resulting in 230 fatalities. In addition, lengthy train crossings can cause congestion on surface streets, leading to delays and blocked roads for emergency vehicles.

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Transporting crash modification factors to a future with automated vehicles

stop light

Photo: City of Burnsville

For the past two decades, data-based tools in the Highway Safety Manual have provided highway safety practitioners with an empirical way to predict the safety consequences of highway engineering decisions. But those tools represent the current prevailing driver and vehicle conditions in the United States. Assessing the transferability of existing tools to new situations such as vehicle automation is the focus of an Roadway Safety Institute project.

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Sensor technology key to automated vehicles

sensor graphic

Photo: Shutterstock

Connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) have the potential to transform the future of transportation—but they can’t be effectively connected or automated without sensors. Lidar, radar, cameras, and maps all need to be working together to assure CAV occupants a safe and reliable ride. During a recent Roadway Safety Institute seminar, Curtis Hay of General Motors (GM) talked about his work developing the sensor technology used in GM’s emerging lines of automated vehicles.

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Publication Credits

Director: Max Donath
Editor: Amy Friebe
Designer: Angela Kronebusch
Writers: Megan Tsai, Sophia Koch, and Pam Snopl