Environmental Measurement and Modeling
The U.S. DOT Volpe Center's Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division measures and models acoustics and air quality to support transportation-related noise, air quality, and safety initiatives. Our sponsors—which include FAA, FRA, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), FHWA, FTA, NHTSA, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)—use our work to develop energy and environmental policies and drive reductions in carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions.
Some highlights of our work include:
- Air Quality– this list of publications reflects the U.S. DOT Volpe Center’s contribution to air quality literature.
- Acoustics– this bibliography includes publications and papers from 1971 to the present published by the U.S. DOT Volpe Center related to our work in noise measurement, which extends to all modes of transportation.
- Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT)– our team leverages AEDT and provides AEDT training for those who want to learn more about noise and emissions, the basics of modeling environmental consequences of aviation operations in AEDT, and using ASIF or SQL to import study data.
- Advanced Acoustic Model (AAM)– our team develops and maintains the AAM suite of software tools that allows users to model vehicle sound levels at receiver positions, either on a uniform grid or at specific defined locations, from helicopters, tiltrotor vehicles, and fixed wing aircraft.
Our team includes a mix of engineers (civil, acoustics, environmental, electrical, software, general, aerospace), physical scientists and emissions modeling analysts, IT specialists and programming analysts, operations research analysts and environmental protection specialists. They work collaboratively to measure noise and emissions for all modes of transportation and conduct long-term noise monitoring in remote locations, such as national parks.
The team models noise, emissions, and dispersion from transportation-related sources to understand environmental and technological impacts and improve quality of life.
Environmental Analysis, Science, and Engineering
Environmental Modeling of Transportation Impacts
- Conduct integrated modeling of transportation impacts using a suite of environmental tools
- Model emissions and dispersion from transportation-related sources
- Analyze and develop environmental policies
- Develop and deploy tools that perform environmental measurement and modeling, including FAA environmental tools, such as:
- Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT)
- Integrated Noise Model (INM)
- System for assessing Aviation's Global Emissions (SAGE)
- Model for Assessing Global Exposure of Noise to Transport Airplanes (MAGENTA)
- Emissions and Dispersion Modeling System (EDMS)
- Noise Integrated Routing System (NIRS)
Noise and Acoustics Measurement for All Modes of Transportation
- Conduct air quality analysis and air pollutant concentration measurement
- Provide aviation noise certification and differential GPS validation
- Use expertise in highway noise models to develop and deploy tools including:
- Traffic Noise Model (TNM)
- Community Noise Model (CNM)
Air Quality Analysis
- Use tools that perform air quality measurement, modeling, and analysis
- Leverage expertise in models such as:
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-preferred air quality dispersion model such as AERMOD
- EPA’s state-of-the-science Motor Vehicle Emission Simulator (MOVES)
- EPA’s Mobile Source Emission Factor Model (MOBILE5a)
- EPA’s alternate air quality dispersion models, including:
- Dispersion model for predicting air pollutant levels near highways and arterial streets (CALINE3)
- CALINE3-based model to calculate delays and queues that occur at signalized intersections (CAL3QHC)
- Industrial Source Complex (ISC3) dispersion model
- Advanced non-steady-state meteorological and air quality modeling system (CALPUFF)
NextGen Initiative Support
- Help FAA lead several environmental analyses for its Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen), including:
- Continuous Lower Energy, Emissions, and Noise (CLEEN) Program
- Environmental Goals and Targets Performance Tracking System
- Environmental Management Systems (EMS)
Applied Data Science and Software Development
- Provide meteorological data measurement
- Analyze and measure traffic data
- Conduct real-time vehicle guidance and tracking
Meet Our Team
View selected staff biographies.
Christopher J. Roof
Chief of Environmental Measurement and Modeling
BS Interdisciplinary Electrical Engineering and Music, Boston University College of Engineering
As chief of the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division, Christopher Roof has supported numerous transportation-related acoustics and air quality projects. His two-plus decades of technical experience include measurement, modeling, and analysis of noise, fuel burn, and emissions for all modes of transportation.
Roof provides technical support to the FAA Office of Environment and Energy (AEE). He helped lead the development of aviation environmental models, including the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT), a model that enables analysis of noise, fuel burn, and emissions interdependencies at multiple levels. Roof also helps FAA coordinate research efforts, including those that support environmental tools. He has partnered with NASA conducting measurement programs designed to develop and improve algorithms, as well as add new aircraft to model databases. Roof undertakes technical analyses for the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Aircraft Noise Committee (A-21) and the National Academy of Sciences, and supports both FAA and National Parks Service (NPS) related to aircraft overflights of national parks.
He has provided environmental support in a number of other areas, including investigations of potential impacts of hovercraft noise on humans and wildlife for the United States Postal Service (USPS), FRA’s National Magnetic Levitation Transportation Technology Deployment Program, FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM), a FMCSA analysis of potential noise impacts of increased safety inspections, a Department of Energy (DOE) analysis of electrical transmission lines, and the Federal Interagency Committee on Aviation Noise (FICAN) assessment of noise modeling tools in national parks.
The team Roof leads supports the implementation of advanced vehicle technologies for FAA, NASA, and private industry; undertakes cutting-edge research on behalf of the National Academy of Sciences; fields models that are used around the world; and works with diverse interdisciplinary groups within the U.S. DOT Volpe Center to seek innovative solutions to the nation’s transportation system challenges. He is active with multiple committees of the Transportation Research Board.
BSE Acoustical Engineering and Music, University of Hartford and the Hartt School of Music
Meghan J. Ahearn became a member of the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in 2009. She studied at the University of Hartford and the Hartt School in a unique interdisciplinary acoustics program designed to integrate mechanical engineering education with musical studies to develop acousticians with well-trained ears.
Ahearn’s work at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center has included analysis, software development support, user experience and engagement, technical documentation, training instruction and curriculum development, noise modeling, noise measurements, and project management for FAA, BTS, FHWA, NPS, NHTSA, NASA, FTA, and FRA.
Ahearn leads Volpe’s Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) Training program which includes courses on the fundamentals of noise and emissions for aviation modeling, the basics of modeling environmental consequences of aviation operations, and understanding the structure of AEDT in order to input study data efficiently through the AEDT Standard Input File (ASIF) or directly into SQL databases.
Ahearn is a co-leader for the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) National Transportation Noise Map which facilitates the tracking of trends in transportation-related noise by mode, and collectively for multiple transportation modes.
Sathya N. Balasubramanian
Principal Software Engineer
Graduate Certificate in Administration and Management, Harvard University
BS Electronics and Communication Engineering, Bharathiar University, India
Sathya Balasubramanian is a principal software engineer in the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division’s analysis group. His work centers on FAA support to the International Aviation Civil Organization (ICAO) Committee for Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP). Balasubramanian has also worked as the lead software developer for FAA SAGE and as a lead developer for AEDT.
Balasubramanian is a member of ICAO CAEP Modeling and Databases (MDG) and Forecasting and Economics Support (FESG) working groups. As part of these groups, he leads policy analyses for ICAO CAEP using the FAA’s Aviation Portfolio Management Tool Economics (APMT-E) and AEDT. Balasubramanian also acts as the database and system administrator for all major analyses performed using APMT Economics and AEDT.
Before joining the U.S. DOT Volpe Center, Balasubramanian worked for several years as lead developer in the field of systems integration and distributed applications. His background also includes specialized knowledge in both Microsoft and Sun Microsystems’ distributed application technologies and Microsoft SQL Server.
BSE Acoustical Engineering and Music, University of Hartford
Michael Barzach is an Acoustic Engineer in the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division. He has contributed to the development of FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM), FAA’s Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT), NASA’s PCBoom, and the Advanced Acoustic Model (AAM). Barzach is also a member of the Unconventional Aircraft Noise Research Team and has contributed to field work and authored research papers for the team. Barzach also contributes to research supporting the QueSST (Quiet SuperSonic Technology) mission specifically regarding turbulence modeling, community response, and PCBoom development. He applies his background in acoustical engineering to a wide range of projects across all transportation modes.
Barzach graduated with a degree in acoustical engineering and music from the University of Hartford (Hartford, CT). This degree combined engineering expertise with training in aural skills to provide an understanding of the real-world applications of acoustics. While at the University of Hartford, Barzach served as the president of his collegiate chapter of the Acoustical Society of America. Before joining the U.S. DOT Volpe Center, he also worked as an acoustical intern in architectural acoustical consulting with Longman Lindsey. Barzach joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling team as a Pathways Intern in 2020 and became full time in 2021.
Eric R. Boeker
MS Acoustics, The Pennsylvania State University
BS Electrical Engineering, Purdue University BA German, Purdue University
Eric Boeker is a physical scientist with over a decade of experience in noise measurement, modeling, and analysis projects for various modes of transportation working in the U.S. DOT Volpe Center's acoustics group.
He provides technical support to FAA’s Office of Environment and Energy (AEE) as team leader for the Integrated Noise Model (INM). Boeker is also part of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) development team focusing on the integration of noise data and modeling capabilities into the AEDT suite. He is involved in several additional FAA, National Park Service (NPS), and NASA projects involving aircraft noise measurement, algorithm development, modeling, and analysis.
In support of FAA AEE, Boeker serves as secretary and undertakes technical analyses for the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) “Aircraft Noise Measurement and Aircraft Noise/Aviation Emission Modeling” committee (A-21). He also participates in the International Aviation Civil Organization (ICAO) Committee for Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP) Modeling and Databases (MDG) working group. Boeker is also a technical advisor to the Partnership of Air Transportation Noise and Emissions Reduction (PARTNER) Center of Excellence.
He provides noise-related support to other transportation agencies, including FRA and FHWA.
Boeker's graduate research involved acoustical signal processing of active sonar. He is actively involved in the Institute of Noise Control Engineers (INCE), the Acoustical Society of America (ASA), and the American Helicopter Society (AHS).
MEng in Mechanical Engineering, Tufts University
BS in Mechanical Engineering, Tufts University
William (Billy) Chupp joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in 2016. His specialties include data analysis, python and SQL scripting, cloud software development, and research and technical writing.
Chupp supports a range of noise, air quality, and data analysis projects. He has been involved in the U.S. Office of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) noise research program and has supported FHWA’s Office of the Human Environment on noise-related research topics in his tenure at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center. Chupp has also performed technical research in support of FRA’s noise regulation revisions. He is also a key member of FHWA’s CMAQ support team, specifically as a developer of CMAQ toolkit tools, which help organizations estimate emissions benefits from transportation-related projects in a simplified way. Chupp has presented research on noise and co-authored an NCHRP 25-25 research project report in his time at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center.
In addition to environmental work, he acts as a member of the Secure Data Commons Product Owner team and has direct experience developing cloud software for this purpose. Chupp’s involvement with ITS JPO-related projects includes serving as a data analyst in support of the Connected Vehicle Pilot Projects independent safety evaluation through the U.S. DOT Volpe Center’s Advance Vehicle Technologies Division.
He holds both a master’s degree and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering through Tufts University (Medford, MA). At Tufts, Chupp gained the analytical expertise and creative thinking skills needed to solve the diverse range of problems the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division tackles.
BS Aerospace Engineering, Boston University
Jordan Cumper has three years of experience as an analyst in the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division.
His work supporting FAA’s Office of Environment and Energy (AEE) has included utilizing and testing the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) for fuel burn, emissions, and noise related analyses. He developed a carbon footprint assessment of U.S. DOT employee travel using an AEDT emissions inventory, utilizing Airport Surface Detection Equipment, Model-X (ASDE-X) data for fuel burn studies within airport terminal areas for System Safety Management Transformation (SSMT), and investigating potential fuel burn savings in Gulf Coast helicopter flights utilizing Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) navigation systems. Cumper has also participated in field work for FMCSA and Air Tour Management Plan (ATMP) related measurement trips.
He is currently working on AEDT database and modeling related tasks in support of Goals and Targets and the Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP). Cumper is also involved in integrating Performance Data Analysis and Reporting System (PDARS) data into modeling software currently being developed at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center.
BSE Acoustical Engineering and Music, University of Hartford
Chris Cutler joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in 2014 through the Pathways internship program and was converted to a full-time physical scientist after receiving his BSE in acoustical engineering and music from the University of Hartford (Hartford, CT) in 2015.
Cutler offers a wide range of support in acoustics-related testing and analysis. He performed extensive software testing and validation for both AEDT 2b and SuperFAR 5.0 releases in support of FAA AEE, and he is the technical support contact for FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM) 2.5. Through the use of SuperFAR and other U.S. DOT Volpe Center tools, he supports his division’s role as auditor of Part 36 Aircraft Noise Certifications, including DGPS system validation.
Cutler is the in-house small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) pilot for his division, having flown multiple test flights used to evaluate hardware and collect high-quality GPS tracking data for the eventual purpose of UAS noise certification. He has experience in various acoustic and meteorological data collection system deployments, including ground-plane microphone setups and long-term environmental surveys.
Cutler has traveled internationally in support of a joint FAA-EASA helicopter noise measurement campaign, deploying multiple acoustic measurement systems, and simultaneously collecting acoustic data from helicopters to be used for model validation and refinement. As a part of the NASA-sponsored Waveforms and Sonic boom Perception and Response (WSPR) team project, he developed a strategic set of U.S. test locations and communities for future dose-response testing of “low-boom” supersonic flights.
Robert Downs, PhD
PhD Aerospace Engineering, Texas A&M University
MS Aerospace Engineering, Case Western Reserve University
BS Mechanical Engineering, Case Western Reserve University
Robert Downs, PhD joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in 2016. His graduate studies and subsequent research in academia focused on fluid mechanics, with an emphasis on boundary-layer physics. This research comprised, in part, of wind tunnel and flight experiments aimed at measurement and manipulation of laminar-to-turbulent transition to improve aircraft efficiency by reducing skin-friction drag.
Downs’ specialties and research interests include boundary-layer stability and transition; experimental methods of fluid dynamics measurement; flow visualization; signal processing and data analysis; and fabrication and configuration of experimental apparatuses.
As part of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) development team, Downs contributes to ongoing aircraft noise measurements as well as post-processing and analysis of the resulting data. He is part of the group tasked with implementation of updated aircraft performance models to AEDT and is contributing to setup and configuration of noise measurement data acquisition systems.
Downs is a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), and has co-authored various works published in the AIAA Journal, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Experiments in Fluids, and the Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets. He has also served as an expert reviewer for a number of scientific journals and is a frequent presenter at professional and scientific conferences.
Vyacheslav E. Gorshkov, PhD
Senior Programming Analyst
PhD Physics and Mathematics, Moscow State University, Russia
Vyacheslav (Slava) Gorshkov, PhD, is a senior programming analyst. His focus is supporting the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in the software design and development of the various modules of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT).
Gorshkov has over 20 years of research and development experience in the information technology, telecommunication, energy, and science industries. His scientific interests include mathematical and computer modeling in the fields of radioecology, x-rays and gamma-rays diffraction, light propagation in disperse media, and theory of stochastic fields. In the information technology field, Gorshkov has been responsible for research, design, development, and implementation of applications in multi-platform and multi-operating system environments.
Gorshkov’s prior assignments at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center included design, development, and maintenance of various applications for FMCSA.
Aaron L. Hastings, PhD
PhD Acoustics, Purdue University
MS Mechanical Engineering, Michigan Technological University
BS Mechanical Engineering, University of Cincinnati
Aaron Hastings, PhD, is a physical scientist in the U.S. DOT Volpe Center's acoustics group. He has 20 years of experience working on sound quality, environmental noise, and noise control issues in academia and the automotive and transportation industries. Hastings’ work has included theoretical and experimental approaches to measuring, modeling and solving acoustic-related problems for FHWA, NHTSA, FAA, and the National Park Service (NPS).
Hastings’ work at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center has included maintenance and development of the FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM), measurement of highway noise, modeling of pavement-specific Reference Energy Mean Emission Levels (REMELs), measurement of snowmobile and snow coach noise in national parks, modeling of over-snow vehicle noise through the development of a modified version of FAA’s Integrated Noise Model (INM), community annoyance for FAA, and the development of minimum sound levels for NHTSA’s work related to the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act.
Hastings’ academic research has focused on the development of sound quality metrics for automotive noise and has involved monaural and binaural measurements, acoustic signal processing, system modeling, psychoacoustics, and subjective testing techniques. He has publications in the Noise Control Engineering Journal, International Speech Communication Association Research Workshop, Proceedings of Inter-Noise, and the International Congress of Acoustics and has made numerous presentations at conferences, working groups, and public meetings.
Anjuliee Mittelman, PhD
Environmental Protection Specialist
PhD Environmental Engineering, Tufts University
BS Chemical Engineering, Queen’s University
Anjuliee Mittelman, PhD, joined the U.S. DOT Volpe Center as an environmental protection specialist in 2015 through the Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF) program. She has provided technical and policy support to FHWA, FRA, FAA, and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Mittelman’s recent work has focused on developing regulations, standards, and guidance on a range of environmental issues including brown field redevelopment, noise, and greenhouse gas emissions.
Mittelman provides support to the International Civil Aviation Organization's (ICAO) Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP) on analysis of aviation-related emissions. She supports EPA’s Upstream Tool, which models transportation-related emissions across the entire fuel lifecycle (well/crop to tailpipe). Mittelman also works to develop tools for FHWA’s Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) program to assess the emission benefits of alternative fuel vehicles.
Mittelman contributes to several FHWA programs aimed at streamlining environmental review and permitting processes under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Clean Water Act, Magnuson Stevens Fisheries Act, and Endangered Species Act. She is the project manager for the Every Day Counts-4 Integrating NEPA and Permitting initiative and the FHWA/National Marine Fisheries Service Programmatic Consultation.
Mittelman’s graduate research focused on contaminant fate and transport in groundwater and drinking water treatment systems, with an emphasis on the environmental and public health implications of nanotechnology.
Bradley L. Nicholas
MEng Acoustics, Pennsylvania State University MA Education, The College of William and Mary
BA Physics, Franklin and Marshall College
Bradley (Brad) Nicholas joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center in 2020 following 18 years as a noise and vibration consultant at Harris Miller Miller and Hanson, Inc. and three years as a high school physics teacher. Since joining the U.S. DOT Volpe Center, he has conducted aviation noise analyses in support of FAA, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Park Service (NPS), and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). These analyses have addressed inputs to FAA’s Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT), aircraft fleet, noise modeling algorithms, wildlife noise exposure, air tours, helicopters, and urban air mobility modeling.
As a consultant, Nicholas managed 75+ airport noise studies such as 14 CFR Part 150 studies, National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) environmental assessment noise analyses, airport ground noise studies, helicopter noise assessments, noise measurement programs, environmental reporting projects, and on-call services. He developed curriculum and taught over 40 courses in AEDT, the Integrated Noise Model, and airport noise control practices to airports, consultants, FAA, universities, NASA, and international governmental organizations.
Nicholas designed and executed field data collection protocols for aviation flight and ground noise community measurements, aircraft and ground service equipment directivity and spectrum measurements, soundscape binaural recordings, operator procedures surveys, and community attitudes surveys. He performed analyses including aviation flight noise modeling, aviation ground noise modeling, airline fleet database analyses, noise model validation statistical analyses, representative flight track tool creation, binaural recording processing, and educational outcomes statistical analyses. Nicholas’ work supported a broad range of sponsors including airports, utilities, private companies, FAA, the Federal Interagency Committee on Aviation Noise, and the Airport Cooperative Research Program.
Amanda S. Rapoza
BSE Acoustical Engineering, University of Hartford
As a senior member of the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division at the U.S. DOT Volpe Center, Amanda Rapoza serves as technical lead for numerous transportation-related noise projects for FRA, FAA, National Park Service (NPS), and FHWA.
Her work for FRA has spanned a range of noise-related projects, including a technical evaluation and recommendations for high-speed rail noise emission standards, analysis, and evaluation of rail projects for National Environmental Policy Act documents, and technical evaluation of the audibility and warning effectiveness of train horns for both motorists and pedestrians. In addition, Rapoza has provided technical expertise in the development of a rail noise module for the National Transportation Noise Map in support of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.
Over her 30-year career, she has supported NPS and FAA in the development of Air Tour Management Plans. She manages all aspects of National Parks noise modeling using the FAA’s Integrated Noise Model and Aviation Environmental Design Tool to predict noise impacts from air tours or other sound sources of interest. Rapoza led measurement and analysis teams in the development of quantitative relationships that correlate aviation noise exposure and park visitor responses.
Additionally, she supports NPS research into the use of quieter pavements in National Parks, and has provided analytical support for the FHWA Traffic Noise Model.
Information Technology Specialist
University of Massachusetts Boston School of Electronic Music
David (Dave) Read is the lead on the U.S. DOT Volpe Center's aircraft noise certification support project, which has been continuously funded by the FAA since the late 1970s. Read has been involved in transportation-related noise work since the mid-1980s. His background is in acoustics and recording, studying engineering, physics, and music at UMass Amherst, then electronic music at the Boston School of Electronic Music (BSEM). Read’s previous work experience includes three years as an instructor at BSEM and seven years managing the audio recording department of the New England Conservatory of Music, where he also taught a course in audio recording techniques.
His responsibilities include software design, coding, and maintenance; design, planning, and performance of acoustic measurement campaigns; formal evaluation of acoustical instrumentation, software, and methodologies used by applicants for FAA aircraft noise certifications; and technical writing for national and international transportation noise-related standards, guidelines, and regulations.
Read is currently a member of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Working Group 1 (WG1) and acts as the WG1 custodian of the ICAO Environmental Technical Manual, Vol. I (ETM). He also leads and participates in several ad hoc task groups for improvement of ICAO’s Annex 16, Vol. I and the ETM. Read is the liaison between WG1 and the International Electrotechnical Committee’s MT23 team in development of Version 2 of IEC 61265. He is a member of the NASA Urban Air Mobility Noise Working Group, and participates in the Ground and Flight Testing subgroup. Read is also a member of the Institute for Noise Control Engineering and the Vertical Flight Society.
Read has co-authored articles in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America and the Noise Control Engineering Journal, and papers presented at Transportation Research Board ADC40 meetings and at Institute of Noise Control Engineering NoiseCons.
Jason C. Ross, PE
ME Acoustics, Pennsylvania State University
BS Mechanical Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder
Jason Ross, PE, is a General Engineer in the U.S. DOT Volpe Center's acoustics group. He has 25 years of experience working in acoustics, engineering, research, and planning within the transportation and energy industries. Jason's expertise includes project oversight, project management, grant management, preparing local, state and federal noise and vibration studies, engineering and final design of noise and vibration mitigation, and public outreach. Jason has worked on many of the nation’s largest infrastructure projects. Jason has provided oversight and direction for environmental professional teams in the noise, vibration, air quality, cultural resources, environmental planning, and sustainability planning disciplines.
For the Federal Aviation Administration, Jason is currently Project Manager of the development of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool. Jason manages a large team of software developers and subject matter experts to maintain and advance the FAA’s tool to model aircraft performance for fuel consumption, emissions, noise, and air quality. Jason led a study for the FAA to assess the implications of potential changes to the national noise policy on the environmental review of projects under the National Environmental Policy Act. Jason has supported the FAA’s Integrated Noise Model validation for the Grand Canyon and has conducted measurements, modeling, and analysis for numerous airport noise studies.
For the Federal Railroad Administration, Jason has conducted noise and vibration studies for numerous FRA-sponsored projects, research, design, and testing of new locomotive horn technologies to improve safety and reduce noise impact, authored the FRA’s High-Speed Ground Transportation Noise and Vibration Guidance Manual, and is currently supporting FRA’s new Corridor Identification and Development Program to expand intercity passenger rail across the United States.
For the National Park Service, Jason has developed acoustic and atmospheric data collection systems, conducted extensive acoustic measurements across our nation’s parks, developed acoustic models such as a snowmobile audibility model for environmental studies of Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park Winter-Use, developed acoustic aircraft detection systems, and supported various other technical studies.
Jason is an active member of the Transportation Research Board and the Institute of Noise Control Engineering. He has written papers and made presentations at conferences for the Institute of Noise Control Engineering, Inter-Noise, Acoustical Society of America, and Transportation Research Board.
Matthew C. Simon, PhD
PhD Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tufts University
BS Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington
Matthew Simon, PhD, joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in 2019. He comes to the U.S. DOT Volpe Center with an extensive background in air quality measurements and modeling. Simon supports FAA and FHWA with dispersion model development and application, and he supports a variety of other projects involving field measurements of air pollution and noise.
Prior to joining the U.S. DOT Volpe Center, Simon spent a few years in academia researching traffic- and aviation-related ultrafine particles (less than 100 nanometers diameter) in metropolitan Boston, MA, and aviation noise exposure nationally. He has published his work in several peer-reviewed scientific journals and has presented at many international conferences. Simon has also spent time as a contractor supporting the Fuel Cell Technologies Office at the U.S. Department of Energy and taught high school science for two years in rural North Carolina as a Teach For America corps member.
BSE Acoustical Engineering and Music, University of Hartford
Jason Smith joined the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division in July of 2022. He studied at the University of Hartford’s College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture (CETA) as well as the Hartt School of Music where he received a BSE in Acoustical Engineering and Music (May 2022). This unique degree program covers many areas of acoustics including noise/vibration control, architectural acoustics, sound system design, psychoacoustics, musical acoustics, and more. While at the University of Hartford, Smith served as the Acoustical Society of America’s (ASA) student chapter president.
Before joining the U.S. DOT Center, he interned for Longman Lindsey, an architectural acoustic consulting firm in New York City. Since joining the team, Smith has FAA’s Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT), NASA’s sonic boom modelling software (PCBoom), National Park Service’s (NPS) Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division, and the Intelligent Transportation Systems Joint Program Office’s (ITS JPO) Data Program.
Sophie R. Son
BSE Acoustic Engineering and Music, University of Hartford
Since joining the Environmental Measurement and Modeling team in 2019, Sophie Son (née Kaye) supports FHWA’s Office of Human Environment’s Noise and Air Quality programs, including the software development teams for the Traffic Noise Model (TNM), as well as the Database for Air Quality and Noise Analysis (DANA Tool). She also supports NASA with the QueSST (Quiet SuperSonic Technology) mission via X-59 community response test planning and sonic boom modeling software (PCBoom) development. Son helps conduct quieter pavement research and crash data analysis for the National Parks Service (NPS) Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division (NSNSD) and the Transportation Safety Team (TSP), respectively.
Son has published and co-authored several papers for the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Journal of Aircraft, American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Journal of Vibration and Acoustics, SAE International (previously Society of Automotive Engineers), the Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), and the International Institute of Noise Control Engineering (I-INCE).
She studied at the University of Hartford (West Hartford, CT) in a uniquely specialized degree program combining traditional engineering studies with music performance in order to train her aural skills to better understand and serve the needs of her clients. Prior to joining the U.S. DOT Volpe Center, Son had previous experience working in noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) consulting with Brüel & Kjær Global Engineering Services and architectural acoustic consulting with Cerami & Associates.
Technical Lead and Task Manager
MS Transportation Engineering, University of California, Berkeley
BS Civil and Environmental Engineering (Systems), Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Lyle Tripp currently works as a technical lead and task manager within the Environmental Measurement and Modeling Division. He is responsible for the study of national environmental and energy performance in support of FAA and its Environmental Management System, an integral component of the Next Generation Air Traffic System.
Tripp has over seven years of experience in aviation consulting, including four years in environmental and energy strategy.