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Autonomous Vehicles That Include Risk in Their Decision Making

Our New Mobility Future Williams Speaking

June 21, 2019

Professor Brian Williams, MIT’s Bisplinghoff Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics, recently spoke as part of the U.S. DOT Volpe Center’s Our New Mobility Future speaker series. His research concentrates on the creation of long-lived autonomous systems that are able to explore, command, and diagnose and repair themselves using fast, online reasoning.  Referred to as model-based autonomy, Prof. Williams’ focus is on risk-aware systems whose actions operate within user-specified risk tolerances.

Advancing Safety in Our New Mobility Future

Our New Mobility Future logo

June 6, 2019

U.S. DOT is working to usher in a new era of transportation innovation and safety. “As we prepare for the future of new, emerging of the top Department priorities is to make sure we address public concerns about safety, security, and privacy, without hampering innovation,” said Diana Furchtgott-Roth, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology at U.S. DOT.

Using Crowdsourced Data to Estimate Crash Risk

A map of Maryland with accidents visualized as yellow and orange dots.

May 14, 2019

Crowdsourced mobile applications are an emerging and rich source of real-time data about roadway conditions. U.S. DOT Volpe Center data experts are using these new data sources from the private sector to estimate where and when motor vehicle crashes are likely to occur.

Volpe Center Shares NASA Award for Contributions to Airport Congestion Reduction

An American Airlines plain waits in front of a control tower at Miami International Airport.

May 7, 2019

A team of experts developing and testing an early prototype automation system aimed at reducing congestion in our nation’s airports received the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) 2018 Aeronautics Associate Administrator Technology and Innovation Award, which recognizes work that has a profound positive impact on NASA’s aeronautics research mission.

Supporting Safe Handoff between Human Drivers and Automated Driving Systems

A driver looks at a car dashboard with the DAISY system installed

April 15, 2019

With support from U.S. DOT’s SBIR program, Soar Technology, Inc., developed a system that alerts drivers to their surroundings during the handoff between an automated driving system and a human driver.

New Seat Belt Locking Mechanisms Aim to Improve Child Safety

A prototype seatbelt design

March 22, 2019

With support from the U.S. DOT SBIR program and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Tool, Inc. designed and developed prototype seat belt retractor countermeasures aimed at reducing the risk of seat belt entrapment.

The U.S. DOT Volpe Center's 2018 Reports

A Waze map is displayed on the navigational system of a vehicle that's driving.

March 7, 2019

The U.S. DOT Volpe National Transportation Systems Center published nearly 60 reports and conference papers in 2018 spanning a breadth of transportation topics that advance U.S. DOT’s priorities: safety, infrastructure, innovation, and accountability. Preview and download copies of these transportation resources.

Engineering Research Psychologist Scott Gabree Wins “Future Generations” Award

Scott Gabree

March 5, 2019

Scott Gabree, PhD, received the Future Generations Award from the DuPage Railroad Safety Council for his work in rail suicide prevention. Gabree and his Volpe Center team are working with FRA and with rail carriers from around the world to examine why rail suicides occur, and identify and implement ways to prevent them. 

Investigating Low-Boom Supersonic Air Travel

Sonic boom infographic

February 25, 2019

The U.S. is a leader in developing supersonic flight technology, and Volpe Center noise experts are helping build confidence in low-boom flight technologies through sonic boom measurement, modeling, and minimization.

The U.S. DOT Volpe Center’s Annual Project Accomplishments

An illustration of Annual Accomplishments January 2019

January 30, 2019

Annual Accomplishments highlights some of our best work of 2018 and underscores our sustained support to U.S. DOT and other key partners.