New Report: Track Buckling Prevention: Theory, Safety Concepts, and Applications
This report is state-of-the-art understanding of continuous welded rail (CWR) and its prevention. The theoretical results and the development and application of the CWR-SAFE computer software model for prediction of CWR track buckling strength are presented. CWR-SAFE encompasses several different modules designed to perform both deterministic and probabilistic buckling analyses, based on the dynamic buckling theory previously validated by tests, and predicts safe limits for buckling prevention. The model accounts for all the important parameters influencing track buckling, such as rail size, curvature, lateral resistance, tie-ballast friction, fastener torsional and longitudinal resistances, track vertical stiffness, misalignment amplitude and wavelength, and vehicle parameters. Applications of the model are demonstrated through analyses of parametric sensitivity, development of buckling safety limits in terms of safe and critical temperatures, and evaluation of annual probability of buckling occurrences for typical CWR line segments. The report also presents techniques to determine the input parameters for CWR-SAFE application and a practical methodology for CWR track safety monitoring. A risk-based approach is proposed to provide more flexibility to the industry in achieving a minimum number of annual buckles in a given territory and to provide science-based guidelines for improved slow order policies when operating at elevated rail temperatures.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the co-authors are Andrew Kish and Gopal Samavedam (Foster-Miller, Inc.)
New Report: Transit Bus Applications of Lithium Ion Batteries : Progress and Prospects
This report provides an overview of diverse transit bus applications of advanced Lithium Ion Batteries (LIBs). The report highlights and illustrates several FTA programs that fostered the successful development, demonstration, and deployment of fuel-efficient hybrid-electric and electric drive transit buses in operational urban fleets over the last decade. The focus is on recent progress in the rechargeable energy storage systems (RESS) that successfully integrated the lighter, more compact LIBs with higher energy density and capacity in a broad range of power and propulsion configurations for urban transit bus fleets. Improvements in fuel efficiency and environmental performance of succeeding generations as well as LIB-related safety, cost, reliability, availability, and maintainability challenges are discussed in context, including recent recalls due to LIB safety issues. Progress in and prospects for future LIB improvements and remaining bus application challenges are also discussed.
Sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration, the Volpe author is Dr. Aviva Brecher
New Report: Martin Van Buren National Historic Site Alternative Transportation Feasibility Study
The Martin Van Buren National Historic Site (MVBNHS) includes the home of our eighth president in Kinderhook, New York. Originally designated in 1974, the site includes the mansion and surrounding 39 acres. The Public Land Management Act of 2009 expanded the park to 300 acres. Currently the site attracts between 20,000 and 25,000 visitors per year. The National Park Service predicts an increase in visitation over the next five to ten years.
This report investigates the feasibility of an alternative transportation system (ATS) to MVBNHS. Specifically, the report addresses the feasibility of a shuttle service that could connect visitors to several travel destinations in the region and provide car-free visitors with a connection from the Amtrak station in Hudson to MVBNHS in Kinderhook. A shuttle service may also offer opportunities for special event transportation and on-board interpretive programs.
Based on the opportunities and challenges presented in this report, the Volpe Center project team suggests five potential scenarios for pilot testing a shuttle service, in an attempt to minimize investment while gaining a better understanding of the demand for this type of transportation service. Each scenario is in keeping with a greater vision for improved alternative transportation throughout the Hudson Valley region. Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe authors are Benjamin Cotton, Kristen Holder and Michael Clark.
New Report: MOVES2010a Regional Level Sensitivity Analysis
This report presents the sensitivity of various input parameter effects on emission rates using the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency's Motor Vehicle Emissions Simulator 2010a (MOVES2010a) model at the regional level. This sensitivity analysis includes the effects on Carbon Monoxide (CO), Oxides of Nitrogen (NOX), Particulate Matter of less than 2.5 micrometers (PM2.5), and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) emission rates (grams/mile) for running exhaust and starts across multiple MOVES vehicle source types. The temperature sensitivity associated with the evaporative emission process is also analyzed. The input parameters of Temperature, Humidity, Ramp Fraction, Age Distribution, Analysis Year, and Average Speed Distribution were varied, while the input parameters of Road Type Distribution, Source Type Population, Age Distribution, Fuel, and Inspection and Maintenance (I/M) Programs were held constant. The results of the analysis show how running exhaust, start, and evaporative emissions rates are affected by the variation of analyzed input parameters and the magnitude of the changes.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe authors are George J. Noel and Dr. Roger Wayson
New Report: Transformation of Safety Culture on the San Antonio Service Unit of Union Pacific Railroad
The Federal Railroad Administration conducted a pilot demonstration of Clear Signal for Action (CSA), a risk reduction process that combines peer-to-peer feedback, continuous improvement, and safety leadership development. An independent formative and summative evaluation of the pilot using qualitative and quantitative measures found that CSA can be implemented on the railroad despite the historical mistrust between labor and management. It is helpful if the site for CSA is open to change and local and external leadership support the process. Over two years, the site with the CSA process experienced improved labor-management relations and an approximately 80 percent decrease in at-risk behaviors. The CSA process was associated with a 79 percent decrease in engineer decertification rates, and an 81 percent decrease in the rate of derailments and other incidents. Comparison locations showed no decreases on these safety measures. Sustaining CSA at a site depends on ongoing cooperation between labor and management to effectively resolve sensitive issues related to the CSA implementation, both protecting the integrity of the worker's process and addressing management concerns. The experience of demonstration suggests that CSA can be effective in promoting a transformation in the broader organization toward more proactive, nondisciplinary approaches to safety.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the Volpe authors are Michael K. Zuschlag, Joyce M. Ranney, Michael A. Harnar, and Michael K. Coplen of the Federal Railroad Administration.
New Report: Property Management Tools and Techniques : Models for the Effective Management of Real Property Assets at State DOTs
The Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) Office of Real Estate Services (HEPR) sponsored the Volpe Center's review of the tools and techniques that State Departments of Transportation ( SDOT) are using to manage, or inventory, their real property assets. Based on information collected from SDOTs during three separate one-day meetings convened in February and March 2012 in Austin, Texas, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Sacramento, California this report synthesizes the content of the meetings' discussions in order to ultimately convey the components of an ideal property management system.
State department of transportation (SDOT) property, sometimes called "airspace," includes the spaces located at, above, or below the highway's established grade line and structures, along with property lying within the approved right-of-way (ROW) limits. SDOTs are increasingly viewing their properties as valuable resources that must be managed in order to ensure that highway improvements and their related facilities function safely and efficiently. As such, the importance of developing a precise and reliable understanding of what properties the SDOT holds; why the properties are being held; and where the properties are located is growing and leading to leading to a renewed focus on the state of the property management practice at SDOTs.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe authors are Carson Poe, Paige Colton, Paul Minnice, Julianne Schwarzer, Mirna Gustave and Katherine Millette
New Report: Driver Behavior Analysis at Highway-Rail Grade Crossings Using Field Operational Test Data – Heavy Trucks
To improve safe driving behavior at highway-rail grade crossings, it is important to understand driver actions at or on approach to highway-rail grade crossings. Volpe researchers used data recently obtained from the Integrated Vehicle Based Safety System (IVBSS) Field Operational Test (FOT) for analysis of heavy truck driver behavior at or on approach to highway-rail grade crossings.
One of the findings of the data analysis was that, on average, heavy truck drivers were likely to engage in secondary tasks, an indicator of distraction, about 21 percent of the time while traversing a highway-rail grade crossing. Additionally, results showed that drivers failed to look either left or right on approach to passive grade crossings about 41 percent of the time. The ultimate objective of the research is to provide the basic driver behavior research needed to identify potential driver education/awareness strategies that would best mitigate risky driver behavior at grade crossings.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the Volpe authors are Tashi Ngamdung and Marco daSilva
New Report: Alternative Jet Fuel Scenario Analysis Report
This analysis presents a "bottom up" projection of the potential production of alternative aviation (jet) fuels in North America and the European Union in the next decade. The analysis is based on available plans from individual companies and considers existing and emerging fuel production technologies. The analysis also forecasts how alternative fuels might contribute to greenhouse gas goals. Based on a review of fuel production companies' stated plans to produce jet fuel, the study incorporated company-specific data into seven scenarios varying alternative jet fuel production and expansion assumptions. This study supports the use of advanced alternative fuels as one important component of achieving emissions and environmental targets, although other additional measures and/or new technologies may also be required. The analysis suggests that the FAA goal of 1 billion gallons of alternative jet fuel use by U.S. aviation in 2018 is achievable.
Sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Volpe authors are Kristin Lewis, Shuchi Mitra, Sheila Xu, Lyle Tripp, Michael Lau, Alexander Epstein, Gregg Fleming, Chris Roof
New Report: Weir Farm National Historic Site Alternative Transportation Feasibility Study
This report provides an assessment of the feasibility of alternative transportation options to accommodate visitation at Weir Farm National Historic Site in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Weir Farm, the historic home of artist J. Alden Weir, faces numerous challenges, particularly parking constraints in a residential neighborhood. Accommodating more visitors in private cars will come at a high cost with regard to the landscape and its viewshed, in addition to the strain on narrow, local roads. This feasibility study considers alternatives to parking expansion, namely a parking reservation system and transit. Transit emerges as the transportation alternative most suitable at Weir Farm.
Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe authors are David Spiller, Luis Mejias and Catherine Duffy.
New Report: Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest Alternative Transportation Feasibility Study: Phase I Final Report
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest (MBSNF) is located in close proximity to the Puget Sound metropolitan area in western Washington State. The Forest is facing a number of transportation issues, such as increasing congestion and decreasing availability of parking, which may negatively impact resources and visitors. The study is intended to assess transportation issues, and evaluate solutions for those issues, on and along the four major highway corridors through the MBSNF that offer winter and summer recreational opportunities: State Route (SR) 542, U.S. Route 2 (US-2), Interstate 90 (I-90), and SR 410. Due to the study's large regional scope and multi-modal approach, the limited availability of funding, and the desire to lead to specific implementation projects, the study was divided into two phases. Phase I was the scoping phase and was intended to identify how the remainder of the funding could be best used, given the multiple corridors and issues and limited resources. Phase II is based on the recommendations from Phase I.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe authors are Lindsey Morse, Benjamin Cotton, and Jonathan Frazier.
New Report: North Carolina "Sealed Corridor" Phase IV Assessment – Private Crossings
The purpose of this research, conducted from October 2008 to February 2010, is to assess the potential benefits provided by the safety improvements at private highway-rail grade crossings in the State of North Carolina along the Charlotte to Raleigh portion of the Southeast High Speed Rail (SEHSR) Corridor. The NCDOT's Rail Division proceeded with this set of safety improvements, commonly grouped under the Private Crossing Safety Initiative (PCSI) program, under Phase IV of its Sealed Corridor program. Crash data were examined from 1990 through 2008 to ensure the inclusion of all incidents that may have occurred at crossings improved through September 2008. This report also contains an analysis and evaluation of whether the resulting reduction in incidents is sustainable through 2010 when train speeds along the corridor could achieve 110 mph.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the Volpe authors are Patrick Bien-Aime, Anya A. Carroll and Marco daSilva.
New Report: Case Studies in Geographic Information Systems for Environmental Streamlining
This summary report addresses the current use of GIS and related technologies by State DOTs for environmental streamlining and stewardship ("GIS4EST"), particularly in relation to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The report presents background information, a series of five case studies, and a summary of conclusions. The conclusions detail observations that may be helpful to other State DOTs seeking to implement or improve their own GIS4EST applications.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe authors are Andrew Breck and Paige Colton, and Mark Sarmiento of the Office of Planning at FHWA.
New Report: Analysis of Aerobatic Aircraft Noise Using the FAA's Integrated Noise Model
The noise due to aircraft operations in the vicinity of airports is commonly modeled with the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Integrated Noise Model (INM) for the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analyses. Although aerobatic maneuvers are often undertaken in the vicinity airports, aerobatic routines have not historically been modeled in these analyses, primarily due to a lack of aerobatic noise source data. Seven aircraft categories were modeled in this study. The goal was to present a noise analysis for a range of complete aerobatic routines and aircraft modeled with INM, providing a matrix of modeled noise results that the FAA can utilize for performing NEPA analyses.
Sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Volpe authors are Eric R. Boeker, David A. Senzig, and Christopher J. Roof.
New Report: Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area Transportation Feasibility Study
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is a popular Bureau of Land Management natural area located near Las Vegas, Nevada. Red Rock Canyon experiences heavy congestion on its Scenic Drive and associated parking areas, due to high volumes of visitors hiking, climbing, and sightseeing along the Drive. The Volpe Center completed a Transportation Feasibility Study examining four transportation alternatives that combine parking expansion, transit service, and management strategies to address parking congestion. The BLM chose to advance one alternative into an Environmental Assessment to move towards implementation. The selected alternative adds seasonal transit service to Red Rock Canyon, including opening the one-way loop to two-way transit serving several of the most popular parking lots. It also includes limited parking expansion and a shuttle dedicated to hikers and climbers.
Sponsored by the Bureau of Land Management, the Volpe authors are Haley Peckett, Luis Mejias and Aaron Jette.
New Report: Assessment of the Hybrid Propagation Model, Volumes 1 and 2
The first of two volumes of a report on the Hybrid Propagation Model (HPM), an advanced prediction model for aviation noise propagation presents the noise level predictions for eleven different sets of propagation conditions, run by the HPM. The conditions include effects of uneven terrain, refractive atmosphere, and ground type transitions. The results are analyzed in detail and comparisons are made across four different source altitudes and between the different component models of the HPM. In addition, a scheme of "intelligent switching" between the HPM's component models is posed as an approach to address the long runtimes of the HPM. The feasibility of this strategy is discussed and some points of caution regarding its implementation are identified. HPM results are compared to the Integrated Noise Model (INM) under uneven terrain conditions in Volume 2. The goal of this research is to enhance the modeling capabilities of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) and INM, particularly in complicated environments such as National Parks.
Sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Volpe authors are Joyce E. Rosenbaum, Eric R. Boeker, Alexandre Buer, Paul J. Gerbi, Cynthia S. Y. Lee, Christopher J. Roof and Gregg G. Fleming.
New Report: Planning and Environmental Linkages Program : Annual Report Fiscal Year 2011
This report highlights the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) Planning and Environment Linkages (PEL) program activities for Fiscal Year 2011 (FY11). The PEL program's purpose is to provide transportation agencies with tools and resources to introduce environmental considerations early in planning and to use documented planning information to inform the environmental review process. The goal of PEL is to develop a more seamless decision-making process that minimizes duplication of effort, promotes environmental stewardship, and reduces delays in project implementation. Through the PEL initiative, FHWA provides state and local transportation and resource agencies with decision-making strategies, analytical tools, and technical assistance to link the transportation planning and environmental planning and review processes.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe authors are Gina Barberio and Gina Filosa.
New Report: Alternative Uses of Highway Right-of-Way
This report investigates the state of practice in accommodating renewable energy technologies and alternative fuel facilities within highway right-of-way (ROW). Recognizing there are considerable economic, ecological, legal and political uncertainties, this report is intended to provide transportation agencies with the information that will better enable them to consider the implications and evaluate the feasibility of implementing renewable energy and fuel options in the ROW.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe authors are Carson Poe, Gina Filosa, Julianne Schwarzer, Aviva Brecher and Katherine Millette.
New Report: Report to the U.S. Congress on the Outcomes of the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program SAFETEA-LU Section 1807
This Report to the U.S. Congress evaluates the extent to which the implementation of nonmotorized transportation infrastructure and educational or promotional programs can influence a population's modal shift to walking and bicycling within four pilot communities: Columbia, Missouri, Marin County, California, Minneapolis, Minnesota and Sheboygan County, Wisconsin.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe project team included William Lyons, Benjamin Rasmussen, Anna Biton, Jared Fijalkowski and David Daddio
New Report: Transit at the Table III
Transit at the Table III: A Guide to Effective Participation in Statewide Decisionmaking for Transit Agencies in Non- Urbanized Areas explores how transit agencies in non-urbanized and rural areas can be more effective partners with state departments of transportation (DOTs) and other entities in the statewide transportation planning and programming process. As the third in the Transit at the Table series, this report consists of a synthesis of the case studies, a discussion of observations and challenges, a section on the role of transit in rural livability, a self-assessment checklist for transit operators, and a list of resources
Sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration, the Volpe authors are William Lyons, Lindsey Morse and Benjamin Rasmussen
New Report: Traveler Information Systems and Wayfinding Technologies in Transit Systems
Transportation-related information technologies—including those installed in vehicles, on personal mobile devices, or as part of the infrastructure—have grown significantly in the past several years, leading to increased consumer expectations for easily accessible and instantaneous traveler information. Many transit agencies have lagged in disseminating transit information in a manner compatible with the needs and expectations of the public. Where transit agencies have not kept pace with advances in technology, this delay represents missed opportunities to leverage the benefits these technologies provide both for meeting the information needs of current transit customers, and for potentially attracting new customers. The Federal Transit Administration asked the Volpe Center to study and evaluate transit wayfinding and route information technologies and strategies. The study provides an assessment of current and future trends in the application of traveler information technologies as a means to expand transit agencies' deployments of these tools, which may result in an increase in transit ridership.
Sponsored by the Federal Transit Aviation Administration, the Volpe authors are David W. Jackson, Charlotte Burger, Benjamin Cotton, Alex Linthicum, Luis Mejias, Terrance Regan and Gina Filosa
New Report: Floatplane Source Noise Measurements: Summary of Measurements, Data and Analyses for the Cessna 182S Skylane and De Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver
Volpe Center researchers provide technical support to the Federal Aviation Administration's development of Air Tour Management Plans (ATMPs) for the National Parks with commercial air tours. An important element of this support is the computer modeling of air tour aircraft. In September 2010, the Volpe Center measured source noise for two floatplane aircraft that have been identified as participating in commercial air tour operations over National Parks: Cessna 182S and De Havilland Canada DHC-2. This document describes the planning and execution of the noise study, overviews the data reduction procedures, and presents final data adjusted to standard conditions.
Sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration with cooperation of the National Park Service, the Volpe authors are Michael Lau, David Senzig, Paul Bevillard, Eric R. Boeker, Christopher J. Roof, Robert Samiljan, Charles Tyndall, Christopher Scarpone, Michael Kim and Cynthia Lee.
New Report: Kenai Fjords National Park Over-the-Snow Transportation Feasibility Study
Kenai Fjords National Park seeks to expand winter access to the Exit Glacier Area. Year-round access would better enable the park to accomplish its mission related to visitor experience, education, and research. The road to the area is inaccessible to cars November through April because of snow and ice. This report documents a feasibility study for over-the-snow (OTS) transportation that would carry passengers in a vehicle with treads up the snow-covered road. Through a site visit, interviews, and independent analysis, the report examines existing conditions, comparable services, vehicle options, market demand, owner-operator models, and business models. The report finds OTS service will increase winter use at the Exit Glacier Area and require NPS to make additional non-transportation-related investments. The park should seek an owner-operator model that improves access while minimizing additional NPS liability. The local business community has an opportunity to partner with the park in creating a new winter recreation destination. If implemented, OTS service should initially be offered in March and April to casual, sightseeing visitors.
Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe authors are Alexander Linthicum and Scott Lian.
New Report: An Analysis of the Factors Influencing ITS Technology Adoption and Deployment
This report presents the results of a quantitative analysis of the factors that influence the deployment and diffusion of intelligent transportation systems (ITS) by state and local governments across the U.S. This analysis is based on the deployment tracking database maintained by the Joint Program Office (JPO) and examines the key historical influences on both the adoption and deployment of ITS technologies since the late 1990s. The results from this study provide the USDOT with statistical insight that can be used to guide future research and inform strategic and policy making. In addition, it provides insight into where the current ITS markets are in terms of market evolution, which can help to identify technologies that are mature and ready for replacement by next generation technologies.
Sponsored by the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Joint Program Office (JPO), the Volpe authors are David Pace, Rachel West, Garrett Hagemann, Paul Minnice, Arlen Spiro and Sari Radin.
New Report: An Approach to Communications Security for a Communications Data Delivery System for V2V/V2I Safety
This report identifies the security approach associated with a communications data delivery system that supports vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communications. The report describes the risks associated with communications security and identifies approaches for addressing those risks. It also identifies and describes the policy and institutional issues that require focus in support of implementation and operations, as well as the balance needed among the priorities of security and safety with cost, privacy, enforcement, and other institutional issues.
Sponsored by the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Joint Program Office (JPO), the Volpe authors are Anita Kim, Valerie Kniss, Gary Ritter and Suzanne Sloan.
New Report: Acoustic and Fuel Consumption Effects Resulting from the Installation of Spiroid Winglets on Aircraft
The Volpe Center is supporting the FAA in implementing its Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) Program. As part of this initiative, the Volpe Center participated in a study to determine the potential fuel saving and noise reduction benefits of installing experimental spiroid winglets on an aircraft.
Sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Volpe authors are Michael C. Lau; David A. Senzig, Robert Samiljan, Meghan Ahearn, Christopher Scarpone and Christopher Roof
New Report: New Bedford Whaling Historic Park Alternative Transportation Systems Evaluation and Analysis
During the mid-19th century, New Bedford was the whaling capital of the world. Congress established New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park in 1996 to commemorate the American whaling industry and its contribution to our nation's history. The park represents a new model in the National Park Service (NPS): preservation and education are achieved through partnerships and not through federal ownership. Other than the Visitor Center and the Corson Maritime Learning Center, the NPS does not own any property or buildings. Together, park partners preserve New Bedford's historic landscapes, structures, and collections and promote research and educational programming associated with the history of whaling. The park's 2001 General Management Plan (GMP) recommends working with the City of New Bedford to provide public transportation between the waterfront, park/partner sites, and parking areas. This Phase I report evaluates the existing pilot shuttle and determines the feasibility of establishing a shuttle system to serve visitors to city cultural sites, the ferry terminal, and adjacent parking areas. This evaluation assesses the sustainability of a park shuttle service including potential shuttle routes, revenues and expenditures, operating costs, and financial and operational partnerships.
Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe authors are Ben Rasmussen, Alex Linthicum and Gabriel Bernal-Lopez
New Report: Technical Criteria and Procedures for Evaluating Alternatively Designed Passenger Rail Equipment
The passenger rail industry is on the cusp of tremendous growth. With the proliferation of planned passenger rail systems around the country, more States and operating authorities desire to use passenger equipment designed to meet alternative standards, which have been proven in foreign operating conditions but not under the more stringent regulations in the United States.
In its role as administer of the railroad safety laws and regulations, the Federal Railroad Administration receives petitions to waive regulations that apply to rail passenger equipment. To provide for safety while making best use of its resources and to facilitate passenger rail industry growth, FRA has decided to develop, in consultation with the rail industry, alternative criteria and procedures for assessing the crashworthiness of rail passenger trainsets that are applicable to a wide range of equipment designs. These criteria and procedures are intended to be used by the rail industry in developing information to support waiver petitions and by FRA in evaluating waiver petitions for Tier I service trainsets or those operated at speeds up to 125 miles per hour (mph).
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the Volpe authors are Michael Carolan, Karina Jacobsen, Patricia Llana, Kristine Severson, Benjamin Perlman and David Tyrell.
New Report: White Mountain National Forest Alternative Transportation Study
The scenic beauty and diversity of recreational opportunities at the White Mountain National Forest (WMNF) makes it one of the most popular national forests and one of the most visited federal lands for recreation in the country. Located within a half day's drive of 70 million people, the WMNF attracts 1.7 million visitors annually, while the surrounding area attracts 5-7 million visitors annually. But with popularity increasing among recreational visitors and tourists, growth in visitation to the WMNF has led to increased automobile traffic throughout the region that is increasingly affecting the visitor experience, the WMNF's natural resources, and air quality. This report documents a planning effort to improve car-free travel options in and around the forest. It documents visitor use trends and transportation issues, explores partnership opportunities for alternative transportation implementation; and identifies options for additional alternative transportation planning or implementation projects. It concludes with recommendations and possible future scenarios for alternative transportation systems.
Sponsored by the USDA Forest Service White Mountain National Forest, the authors are Alex Linthicum, Charlotte Burger, Larry Garland, Benoni Amsden, Jacob Ormes, William Dauer, Ken Kimball, Ben Rasmussen, Thaddeus Guldbrandsen.
New Report: Shenandoah National Park Traveler Information Coordination Study
Shenandoah National Park is located in northwestern Virginia, about 60 miles southwest of Washington, DC. The park comprises 308 square miles of land buffering the 105-mile long Skyline Drive. Approximately one third of the visitors use the Front Royal Entrance Station which is the most convenient for Washington DC visitors. The National Park Service asked Volpe staff to help identify transportation information solutions to alert visitors about potential park closures due to weather and congestion issues. With the current traveler information systems, most visitors don't find out about closures until they arrive at the park and it is difficult to alert visitors to alternative routes when congestion occurs, leading to frustrated and disappointed visitors. Integration with 511, variable message signs on major roadways, improvements to the existing phone and web systems and better internal procedures to more smoothly and consistently activate these alert systems are recommended next steps.
Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe Center authors are Kenneth Miller and Kathleen Sylvester.
Three Reports Evaluating the Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance System for Violations (CICAS-V) Initiative Published
Three new reports were just released on the Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance System for Violations (CICAS-V). The CICAS-V is a vehicle-to-infrastructure system that provides visual, audio, and haptic (brake pulse) warnings when a vehicle is in danger of violating a traffic signal or stop sign at an intersection.
In the Independent Evaluation of the Driver Acceptance of the Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance System for Violations (CICAS-V), the authors evaluated a pilot test of naïve drivers in on-road and test-track environments to assess the readiness and maturity of the CICAS-V and to ensure the field operational test (FOT) will achieve its goals.
In the System Capability Assessment Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance System for Violations (CICAS-V) report twelve types of objective tests were conducted to examine CICAS-V performance under defined conditions and operating parameters.
Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance System for Violations (CICAS-V) - Database Structure report documents the process required for data exchange between a conductor of a field operational test (FOT) and an independent evaluator based on the experiences of the CICAS-V FOT test
All three reports were sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Mary Stearns and Lisandra Garay-Vega prepared the first report, John Brewer, Jonathan Koopmann and Wassim Najm the second and Raman Sampath, Jonathan Koopmann and Wassim Najm authored the third report.
New Report: Quieter Cars and the Safety of Blind Pedestrians, Phase 2 : Development of Potential Specifications for Vehicle Countermeasure Sounds
This report documents research conducted to identify potential methods of developing a specification for vehicle sounds (audible countermeasures), for use in electric vehicles (EV), plug-in-hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) or hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) operating in electric mode. As a follow-on to the Phase 1 research which initially studied the issue of Quieter Cars, this Phase 2 research focused on developing objective specifications for detectability using sound pressure levels (SPLs) and spectral profile characteristics. The feasibility of objectively specifying other aspects of sound quality for the purpose of predicting recognizability was explored.
Funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Volpe Center authors are Aaron Hastings, John K. Pollard, Lisandra Garay-Vega, Mary D. Stearns and Catherine Guthy.
New Report: Investigation of Temperature Correction for Tire/Pavement Noise Measurements
Understanding how various pavements affect highway traffic noise that reaches nearby communities is an important aspect of highway noise prediction and noise mitigation. The Volpe Acoustics Facility investigated the influence of temperature on tire/pavement noise in order to provide guidance on correcting for temperature variations in measured sound levels.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe Center author is Judith Rochat.
New Report: Colonial National Historic Park 2010 Visitor/Motorist Survey
In this report, Volpe staff present findings and recommendations from a 2010 survey of visitors not using a seasonal shuttle bus at Colonial National Historical Park. The survey asked visitors for basic demographic information, level of awareness of the shuttle, information sources used, and for their willingness to ride the shuttle in the future. The survey of non-riders at Colonial NHS found that a number of visitors are interested in using alternative transportation, but lacked sufficient information on the service. It also suggests that, so long as visitors have the option to freely use personal vehicles, others will continue to do so, due to their planned itineraries and personal preferences. Major recommendations include specific strategies for improving awareness, as informed by the survey findings.
Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe Center authors are Gabriel Lopez-Bernal, Elizabeth Machek, Margaret Petrella, Ben Rasmussen and Rosalie Ray.
New Report: FMCSA Safety Program Effectiveness Measurement: Intervention Model in Fiscal Year 2007
This report presents results from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's Roadside Intervention Model for fiscal year 2007. The model estimates the number of crashes avoided, as well as injuries avoided and lives saved, as a result of the agency's roadside inspection program. The Roadside Intervention Model uses a risk-based approach to estimates the benefits of the roadside inspection program. With this approach, each violation detected at the roadside is assigned a crash risk. When these violations are corrected as a result of an inspection, the associated crash risks are removed and the number of crashes, fatalities, and injuries prevented can be estimated.
Sponsored by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Volpe authors are Kevin Gay, Suzanne Horton and Sung Teak On.
New Report: Public Education and Enforcement Research Study – Macomb, Illinois, Analysis
The Public Education and Enforcement Research Study (PEERS) was a collaborative effort between the Federal Railroad Administration, the Illinois Commerce Commission, and local communities in the State of Illinois. This project was designed to promote safety at highway-rail grade crossings. Volpe Center researchers monitored and evaluated highway-rail grade crossings in Illinois communities using video data collection, while the communities conducted education and enforcement campaigns. The effectiveness of the programs was determined by counting the number of motorists and pedestrians that violated the crossing warning devices during three project phases. This report focuses on the effectiveness of the PEERS programs in Macomb, IL, and compares the results to Arlington Heights.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the Volpe author is Suzanne Horton.
New Report: Parker River National Wildlife Refuge Transit Planning Study
As a destination for visitors across New England to observe wildlife and enjoy the beach, the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, located on Plum Island in Massachusetts, receives approximately 250,000 visitors come annually. The Refuge staff must balance the flow of visitors coming to learn about and enjoy the Refuge's wildlife resources while also ensuring that these resources remain protected. Volpe Center researchers studied the feasibility of the use of a transit vehicle for programs and special events. The study defines the need for a transit vehicle, potential uses for the vehicle, vehicle selection options, a budget analysis, and performance measurement strategies. The Transit Planning Study recommends the purchase of a 28-passenger transit vehicle for use during interpretation and environmental education programs on the Refuge, as well as for programs and special events with partner agencies.
Sponsored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Volpe authors are Haley Peckett, F. Scott Lian and David Spiller.
New Report: SafeTrip - 21 — Federal ITS Field Tests to Transform the Traveler Experience
Safe and Efficient Travel Through Innovation and Partnerships in the 21st Century is one of the first federally funded ITS field tests to focus on market-ready consumer products and to invite the public to safely experience the benefits of emerging transportation technology. SafeTrip-21 popularized transportation technology by making traffic and transit data available to the public via websites, smartphone apps and other electronic media. Federal ITS field tests were carried out between November 2008 and November 2010 in partnership with state government, private companies and universities. The results showed that public ITS research can provide a conceptual foundation for real-world and commercial products.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration's ITS Joint Program Office, the Volpe authors are Jessica Hector-Hsu, Gary T. Ritter, Suzanne Sloan, Laura Waldron, Philip Thornton and Katherine Blythe.
New Report: Applications of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Livability : Case Studies of Selected Transportation Agencies
This report synthesizes the findings from four case studies that assess how select organizations (the City of Boulder, Colorado's Transportation Division, the Center for Neighborhood Technology, the University of Oregon and the Oregon Transportation Research and Education Consortium, and the Southern California Association of Governments) are developing and applying GIS tools to support livability goals from a transportation point of view. The report identifies important trends and factors that encourage the use of these tools and provides examples of additional tools beyond those referenced in the case studies. Finally, it describes successes and challenges experienced in developing and utilizing the tools as well as factors that transportation organizations might consider as they engage in similar efforts.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration's Office of Planning, the Volpe authors are Ben Cotton, Alisa Fine, and Carson Poe.
Multimodal Trip Planner System Final Evaluation Report
Volpe Center staff support the Federal Transit Administration in its efforts to disseminate knowledge of advanced traveler information technologies within the transit community. This report evaluates the development of a door-to-door multimodal trip planning system (MMTPS) that integrates transit information with driving, parking, and bicycling information. The findings, lessons learned, and recommendations related to the MMTPS project draw on interviews, surveys, and a review of project documentation and communications collected over the planning, development, and implementation phases of MMTPS, as well as a review of the current state of the trip planning environment.
Sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration, the Volpe Center authors are Lee Biernbaum, Lydia Rainville, and Arlen Spiro.
New Report: Railroad Right-of-Way Incident Analysis
The Volpe Center's latest contribution to grade crossing research analyses railroad infrastructure hotspots to help states and communities determine how to allocate limited funds for crossing improvements. Hotspots are defined as highway-rail grade crossings or other locations along the railroad right-of-way where collision or trespassing risk is unacceptably high and intervention is justified because the potential safety benefits exceed the cost of intervention. Various mathematical models are researched to optimally identify incident hotspots.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration's Office of Railroad Policy and Development, the Volpe Center authors are Mina Chaudhary, Adrian Hellman and Tashi Ngamdung.
New Report: Ridesharing Options Analysis and Practitioners' Toolkit
The purpose of this toolkit is to elaborate upon the recent changes in ridesharing, introduce the wide variety that exists in ridesharing programs today, and the developments in technology and funding availability that create greater incentives for people to abandon single occupant vehicles in favor of a shared ride. The intended audience is public sector transportation agencies; however the toolkit also highlights the private sector's role and opportunities for public-private partnerships.
This report concludes with a database of examples of local, regional, statewide, national, and international rideshare programs and providers, as well as hyperlinks to their respective websites, presented as a resource for readers.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration's Office of Planning, Environment and Reality, the Volpe Center authors are Michael Kay and William M. Lyons
New Report: Development of Improved Ambient Computation Methods in Support of the National Parks Air Tour Management Act
Computing ambient sound levels for acoustic conditions in National Parks is not straightforward. With over 85 National Parks units needing Air Tour Management Plans, Volpe Center staff, supported by the National Parks Service and the Federal Aviation Administration are evaluating current methods and developing standards for computing ambient sound levels in National Parks. This report describes the results of several on-going analyses: (1) Analysis of ambient data measured under high-wind conditions; (2) Quantification of the differences between in situ observer logging versus offline review of digital recordings; and (3) Computation of natural ambient and existing ambient without air tours.
Sponsored by the National Park Service and the Federal Aviation Administration, the Volpe Center authors are Amanda S. Rapoza, J. M. MacDonald, Aaron Hastings, Chris Scarpone, Cynthia S. Y. Lee and Gregg Fleming.
New Report: Volpe Center Continues Railroad Tank Car Structural Integrity Research
Volpe researchers continue to improve the crashworthiness of railroad tank cars by treating the commodity-carrying tank car as a protected entity. Welded steel sandwich structures were examined as a means to protect the tank car against penetrations and punctures from impacting objects in the event of a derailment or collision. This report describes the engineering studies that were conducted to examine the deformation behavior of flat, welded steel sandwich panels under two quasi-static loading conditions.
Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, the Volpe Center authors are David Jeong, Michael Carolan, A. Benjamin Perlman and Yim Tang.
New Report: Alternative transportation study: Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge.
This report reveals the Volpe Center's assessment of historic and current visitation, infrastructure, and transportation conditions at the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge and surrounding areas in southwest Oklahoma. The study defines transportation-related goals for the refuge, current issues, and identifies ten potential solutions that focus on alternative transportation, including pedestrian, bicycle, wayfinding and information, and transit. The analysis supports the development of the Wichita Mountains Comprehensive Conservation Plan.
Sponsored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Volpe Center authors are Luis Mejias, Charlotte Burger and Eric Plosky
New Report: Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site Transportation Study
Located in Brookline, Massachusetts, the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site occupies 7.3 acres, and serves as both a public museum, office complex and a preservation facility, known as the Olmsted Archives. Olmsted is recognized as the founder of American landscape architecture and the nation's foremost parkmaker. The National Park Service is now engaged in a strategic planning effort with the aim of revising and updating the 1983 General Management Plan (GMP) to develop a plan of action for how the site will be managed for the next twenty years. The Volpe Center's study provides concepts and ideas for a complementary transportation plan in support of the revised GMP. Issues and problems are identified under existing conditions, and support adaptation to future conditions that are planned for the site.
Sponsored by the National Park Service, the Volpe Center author is David Spiller.
New Report: FHWA Scenario Planning Guidebook
Volpe Center staff prepared a guidebook to assist transportation agencies with carrying out a scenario planning process from start to finish. Transportation agencies can use the guidebook as a framework to develop a scenario planning approach tailored to their needs. The guidebook provides detailed information on the six key phases that agencies are likely to encounter when implementing a scenario planning process. While the guidebook focuses on regional planning, it recognizes that scenario planning is flexible and can be used to address many different issues at multiple scales.
Sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, the Volpe Center authors are Alisa Fine, Jeffrey Bryan and Kate Sylvester
New Volpe Center Report Assesses Beach Parking Alternatives at the Cape Cod National Seashore
Beach parking adjacent to the ever-changing coastline of the Lower/Outer Cape Cod, MA region is subject to erosion. In order to maintain access to the beaches without paving over additional park land, the U.S. Department of the Interior's National Park Service (NPS) asked the Volpe Center to study the issue. The Center's report, Cape Cod National Seashore Integrated Parking and Transit Study, looks at alternative parking locations and the feasibility of running shuttle services from nearby satellite parking areas to the beach. The study assesses current and future beach parking availability, considering visitor demand and erosion potential, over a 20-year period and identifies potential ways to maintain and improve access. Direction is provided for the towns of the Lower/Outer Cape and the NPS for implementing the shuttle concepts developed in the report. The study was prepared by the Volpe Center's Anna Biton, Frances Fisher, Lindsey Morse, Benjamin Cotton and Kenneth Miller. It is available at http://ntl.bts.gov/lib/35000/35700/35783/capecod2.pdf.
Two TRB papers on quiet cars and the safety of visually-impaired pedestrians
Two Volpe researchers examined the safety implications of quieter cars for visually- impaired pedestrians at the 90th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board (TRB). Dr. Lisandra Garay-Vega presented her work that compared the auditory detectability of Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs) and internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles among pedestrians who are legally blind. While Dr. Aaron Hastings reported on how electric vehicles (EVs) and HEVs may reduce auditory cues used by pedestrians to assess the state of nearby traffic.
The National Highway Traffic Administration sponsored both studies.
New Report: Assessment of needs and research roadmaps in developing the next generation of electric drive buses.
This report assesses state-of-art advances in lithium-ion batteries, ultracapacitors, and related power management and control technologies for the rechargeable energy storage systems (RESS) on-board existing and emerging electric drive buses. RD&T roadmaps for near-, mid-, and long-term are developed for FTA and potential partners developing next generation electric drive buses, based on a review of technical literature, and inputs from experts and transit stakeholders regarding lessons learned, knowledge gaps, and priority RD&T needs. Illustrative projects up to 2020 are proposed based on the identified priority needs in these roadmaps. They promise to advance RESS technologies from research, development, demonstration, test and evaluation to full integration in more fuel efficient, environmentally sustainable, and cost-effective commercial electric drive transit buses.
Sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), the author is Aviva Brecher.
This report presents the findings: Assessment of Needs and Research Roadmaps for Rechargeable Energy Storage System (RESS) Onboard Electric Drive Buses
New Report: Frequency of Target Crashes for IntelliDrive Safety Systems
Volpe Center staff present the results of a high-level crash analysis that sets the foundation for follow-on detailed crash analyses to define the functional requirements of IntelliDrive safety applications. In addition to the frequency of target crashes, the detailed crash analyses will measure the severity of crashes and will identify crash causes, contributing factors, and circumstances.
Sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the authors are Volpe staff members: Wassim Najm, Jonathan Koopmann, John D. Smith and John Brewer.
This report presents their findings: Frequency of Target Crashes for IntelliDrive Safety Systems
New Report: ITS Technology Adoption and Observed Market Trends from ITS Deployment Tracking
Volpe Center analyzes the market dynamics and benefits associated with the deployment and diffusion of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) technologies across the United States. The objective is to allow the ITS JPO team to learn from the experience of historical and current generation ITS deployment and use this knowledge to guide research and related activities to support next generation ITS and inform strategic planning efforts.
The authors are Volpe staff members: Garrett Hagemann, Jennifer Michaels, Paul Minnice, David Pace, Sari Radin, Arlen Spiro and Rachel West.
This report presents their findings: ITS Deployment Tracking.
New Report: Electronic Flight Bag (EFB): 2010 Industry Survey
For nearly a decade the Volpe Center has supported the FAA to understand the human factors issues in the design and evaluation of Electronic Flight Bags (EFB). As part of this support, the Volpe Center informs the FAA of the industry trends through periodic industry surveys. The EFB survey provides an overview of current EFB systems, capturing the state of the EFB industry as of June 2010.
This report presents their findings: 2010 Industry Survey.
Transportation study of the John F. Kennedy National Historic Site
Volpe Center researchers provide an overview of the transportation and access issues related to the John Fitzgerald Kennedy National Historic Site in Brookline, Massachusetts for the National Park Service. In support of developing a new General Management Plan (GMP) for the site, the report identifies and evaluates several potential transportation alternatives and discusses their implementation.
This report presents their findings: Transportation Study.
Volpe researchers explore causes of runway incursions
In the current issue of Air Traffic Control Quarterly, Volpe researchers investigate what is known about human errors and other factors that have been identified as contributing to runway incursions, and offer some error mitigation strategies. Their data will be useful in helping to design the most effective tools for safety, increasing capacity, and for estimating the safety benefits of proposed system enhancements.
The authors are Volpe Center staff members: Kim Cardosi, Stephanie Chase and Danielle Eon
This report presents their findings: Runway Safety.
New research paper: Duality of Circulation Decay Statistics and Survival Probability
At a recent American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Atmospheric Flight Mechanics Conference held in Toronto, Hadi Wassaf and Frank Wang presented their findings on establishing a clear linkage between survival probability and circulation decay in wake vortex behavior and how they can be mapped to one another depending on need. The impact on the study is twofold:
- It provides a mean to infer circulation decay probabilistic bound from survival probability curves, which is particularly useful in providing insight on circulation statistics at old wake ages where direct circulation measurements are often challenging. This is referred to as the reverse process
- In analyses that require probability such as encounter probability analyses, this survival probability can be inferred from known statistical decay curves. This is referred to as the forward process
This report presents their findings: Duality of Circulation Decay Statistics and Survival Probability.
New research paper: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Modeling: A Tool for Federal Facility Decommissioning
Volpe researchers assist the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) with developing effective strategies to stay in compliance with regulatory and policy drivers while decommissioning FAA facilities due to the technological advances of Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). NextGen alone will drive a massive facility decommissioning effort with the potential for major environmental impacts from demolition and disposal activities, including emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), criteria pollutants, and air toxics, erosion, runoff, noise, generation of solid waste, and the migration of contamination associated with historic releases of hazardous waste, fuel constituents, and hazardous building materials. Using data from the decommissioning of an air traffic control tower and an air route surveillance radar facility, the team refined and validated their model to facilitate the quantitative analysis of comprehensive GHG emissions inventory from from demolition debris reuse, recycling, and disposal activities.
The authors are Volpe Center staff members Karen Petho, Chris Zevitas, Adam Klauber and Jonathan Cybulski
This paper presents their findings: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Modeling: A Tool For Federal Facility Decommissioning
New report: Exterior Sound Level Measurements of Snowcoaches at Yellowstone National Park
Researchers from the Volpe Center Acoustics Facility measure sounds associated with oversnow vehicles, such as snowmobiles and snowcoaches at Yellowstone National Park in support of the National Park Service's Winter Use Plan. Acoustic measurements of twenty-five oversnow vehicles were made at three locations within the park.
This report presents their findings: Exterior Sound Level Measurements of Snowcoaches at Yellowstone National Park.
New Report: Environmental Modeling of Trans-Arctic and Re-Routed Flights
Recent work by researchers at Stanford University showed potentially large impacts on Arctic temperature increases due to aircraft over-flights. The FAA's Office of Environment and Energy tasked the Volpe Center, the MITRE Corporation, and Stanford with conducting an analysis of potential impacts of re-routing aircraft away from the Arctic region. This report discusses the methods used in developing the alternative cases used in the analysis. This report also presents the primary fuel consumption and oxides of Nitrogen emissions for the major Origin-Destination city pairs, airlines, and aircraft types identified in MITRE's analysis.
The report authors are David Senzig, Gary Baker and Sathya Balasubramanian.
The report is available in pdf:
New Final Report: Carbon Sequestration Pilot Program for FHWA
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) established the Carbon Sequestration Pilot Program (CSPP) in 2008 to assess whether a roadside carbon sequestration effort through modified maintenance and management practices is appropriate and feasible for state Departments of Transportation (DOTs) when balanced against ecological and economic uncertainties. The purposes of the pilot were to:
- Develop estimates of the amount of revenue that DOTs could earn if they undertook a carbon sequestration effort using native vegetation
- Determine the cost-effectiveness of a similar effort on a national scale
- Create decision support tools that DOTs could use to determine the efficacy of programs in their states.
CSPP findings are expected to inform DOTs that may be considering the implications of future climate change legislation or that independently want to evaluate the cost effectiveness of using National Highway System (NHS) right of way (ROW) to generate revenue from the sale of carbon credits, offset their own emissions, or meet statewide greenhouse gas emissions objectives.
Recently, FHWA and the Volpe Center released their joint report, "Estimated Land Available for Carbon Sequestration in the National Highway System." The project team, led by Carson Poe of the Transportation Policy, Planning and Organizational Excellence Division, used Geographic Information Systems to analyze aerial images, detailed state DOT maps and ROW plans to estimate that the NHS includes about 5 million acres of land. This acreage total is the first known data-based estimate for highway ROW acreage for both individual states and the nation.
The project team estimates that vegetation in the NHS ROW has already sequestered 91 million metric tons (MMT) of carbon and that it continues to sequester approximately 3.6 MMT per year nationwide, or the equivalent of the carbon dioxide emissions from about 2.6 million passenger cars. Using a hypothetical price of $20 per metric ton, the total potential sequestration value of the nation's highway ROW is $8.5 to $14 billion nationwide. As part of the overall project, the Volpe Center and FHWA also developed a Highway Carbon Sequestration Estimator as a decision-support tool to help state DOTs assess the return on investment for various carbon sequestration scenarios.
The decision-support tool is available upon request.
To read more about the study, link to the Highlights article.
New reports: Volpe's work for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
The workforce of the Volpe Center has been hard at work, continuing our technical work to address many of transportation's most pressing issues. NHTSA, recognizing that hybrid-electric cars in low-speed operation may introduce a safety issue for blind pedestrians, recently sponsored an investigation into possible countermeasures to increase safety. The investigation yielded a Phase 1 report this spring, written by Divya Chandra and Andrew Kendra of the Volpe Center's Human Factors Research and System Applications Center of Innovation.
In recognition of their work, the Volpe Center team was presented with the 2010 Greater Boston Federal Executive Board (GBFEB) Excellence in Government Creativity and Innovation Award.
To read more about the study, link to:
Read the report here.
The Volpe Center has also continued other ongoing work for NHTSA, including Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. In the fall of 2009, NHTSA and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a joint proposal to increase CAFE standards during model years 2012-2016 and establish the first national greenhouse gas emission standards under the Clean Air Act.
The Volpe Center has been providing NHTSA with the development and application of a modeling system and related information in order to support the development and evaluation of options for new CAFE standards since 2002.
At the U.S. Transportation Secretary's 2009 awards ceremony, Kevin Green, Ryan Harrington and Don Pickrell of the Volpe Center were recognized as part of the CAFE team, receiving a prestigious Partnering for Excellence Award for their work. The Secretary awarded the team with the Department's second-highest honor for exemplary dedication and teamwork.
To read more about the study, link to: the Highlights article
Read the report here.
Volpe's new Technical Library and Information Center website launches September 1, 2010!
The Volpe Center Library hopes to transform into an even better resource for our staff and the broader transportation community-both user-friendly and transparent. There are two parts to this initiative: transitioning the thousands of Volpe Center reports, studies and papers currently in the library's unique collection to a centralized digital repository, and the relocation of the library, which will provide greater accessibility and an enhanced physical space.
Meet the Volpe Center's First Federal Librarian!
Susan (Sue) Dresley, the Volpe Center's first-ever Federal librarian, has 30 years of librarian and technical information and research experience in the field of transportation. In that time, she has provided research and reference services to constituents in Volpe, RITA, DOT, and the national transportation community as well as the general public.
In the past, as a contractor with various firms, she has served as the Volpe Center's Head Librarian and Technical Information Center Manager. Sue currently manages a staff that provides reference services on a diverse spectrum of transportation issues to include literature searches, internet research, extensive contacts with personal networks and interlibrary loan activities. She has demonstrated skill in providing highly competent assistance on multidisciplinary and cross modal transportation issues.
An active member of the Library and Information Science for Transportation Committee (LIST) Committee of the Transportation Research Board since 2002, Sue has also demonstrated herself to be a leader in her field, serving multiple leadership positions with the Special Libraries Association, Transportation Division, including Chair, Chair-Elect, Special Projects Chair and Treasurer. Sue received her Master of Science Library and Information Science from Simmons College and her Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from St. John Fisher College.
Over the next several months, Sue will be leveraging her new position as the Technical Library and Information Center Federal librarian to raise the visibility and awareness about the Volpe Center's technical reports and presented work.
Visit the Library some time and say hello to Sue!