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Safely Integrating Drones into the National Airspace

A drone flying near an island.

December 6, 2017

By 2021, there could be 4 million remotely piloted aircraft—commonly referred to as drones—in the hands of hobbyists and commercial users, according to projections from the Federal Aviation Administration. Safely and efficiently integrating the coming influx of drones into our nation’s airspace creates a variety of technical, operational, and regulatory challenges. Recently, Volpe  worked closely with the U.S. Air Force and the Ohio Department of Transportation to test technologies that may enable safe and efficient flight of small drones. 

Leveraging the Space Above Our Heads and the Emergent eVTOL Market

A small airplane in flight that can also be driven on roads.

December 6, 2017

Getting stuck in traffic isn’t just a nuisance. On an aggregate level, traffic can have major financial impacts for cities and countries. Aviation innovator Carl C. Dietrich, PhD, co-founder and chief technology officer of Terrafugia, explains the potential to use the space right above our heads to relieve automobile congestion.  

Volpe Is Recruiting Student Interns for 2018

A group of student interns stands together on the rooftop of the Volpe Center.

November 16, 2017

The Volpe Center is recruiting talented and diverse individuals to fill internship positions in a variety of fields. The summer 2018 internships are open November 16-30, 2017, or until the applicant limit is reached.

The Volpe Center Honors Staff Who Served in the U.S. Military

Honoring Our Veterans

November 9, 2017

As the nation observes Veterans Day on Saturday, November 11, we honor the many veterans who have transitioned from military service into a civil service career at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center. Meet some of the veterans who work at the Volpe Center and join us in honoring their contributions, then and now.

Inside 93 Case Studies on Cargo Tank Rollovers—Plus, 5 Recommendations for Hazmat Transportation

A cargo tanker truck moving on a highway.

November 9, 2017

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration turned to U.S. DOT’s Volpe Center to investigate the causes behind 93 real-life hazmat tanker truck rollovers, current training programs, and to develop recommendations to improve cargo tank safety.

This Long-Range Transportation Plan is a First for the National Park Service

National Long Range Transportation Plan cover, showing several bison walking down the road in the side-view mirror of a car.

November 8, 2017

To provide service-wide guidance on maintaining and improving various transportation assets, the National Park Service recently released its first National Long-Range Transportation Plan, a 20-year vision plan that a team of Volpe planners helped develop.

Putting Safety in the Driver's Seat

Logo of Volpe's 2017 speaker series, The Ongoing Transformation of the Global Transportation System

November 1, 2017

Technology is advancing, societal trends are changing, and new visions for self-driving vehicles are emerging. Harry Lightsey of General Motors provides the manufacturer's perspective on how self-driving cars are putting safety in the driver's seat as part of The Ongoing Transformation of the Global Transportation System speaker series.

Dr. Richard John: Laser-Focused on Global Challenges, Innovation, and the Future of the Nation’s Transportation System

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and Dr. Richard John stand together at the Volpe Center in front of a picture wall

October 31, 2017

Distinguished director of U.S. DOT’s Volpe Center from 1989 to 2004 and now director emeritus, Dr. Richard R. (“Dick”) John will retire from public service in November following a federal career that spanned five decades.

Rethinking the Human-Autonomy Architecture

Amy Pritchett speaks to an audience at the Volpe Center.

October 24, 2017

With automation appearing more and more across daily life—including in air and ground travel—tasks we think of as belonging to humans may soon be taken over by computers, and there could be consequences that haven’t yet been imagined, said Amy Pritchett, professor and head of the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Pennsylvania State University, who recently spoke as part of Volpe's 2017 speaker series.

Real-Time Solar Powered Traffic Data Network

October 23, 2017

With the support of the U.S. DOT SBIR program, the Federal Highway Administration, and the National Park Service, Intelligent Automation, Inc. developed, tested, and deployed a low-profile, multi-sensor, low power-consumption, light-weight, and visually unobtrusive tool that takes advantage of existing infrastructures to seamlessly monitor traffic information and ensures timely data collection and reporting.