Intelligent Transportation Systems


Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) apply advances in computing, sensing and communication technologies to improve the performance of ground transportation systems. ITS evaluations focus on the study of the impacts of various ITS applications on traffic flow, safety and operations.

Examples of applications we have studied include:

In-vehicle data recorders (IVDR) use accelerometers, speedometers and GPS receivers to measure the vehicle movement. We have helped to translate the basic measurements into a series of meaningful maneuvers that the vehicle has undertook. These maneuvers and their characteristics form a basis to an objective measurement of driving behavior. Econometric models that we have developed showed the existence of a significant association between the indices calculated by IVDR and the risk of involvement in car crashes. We used these data to study the evolution of the driving characteristics of young drivers in the first months after licensure, and the impact of providing feedback derived from the IVDR to drivers on their behavior.

Speed limiters constrain the maximum speeds of vehicles. We studied the potential impact of a broad installation of speed limiters in vehicles on road safety and traffic flow using a traffic simulation model. The results were used in an economic evaluation of such installation project, which was at the center of an EU legislation proposal.

Advanced Traveler information systems (ATIS) provide real-time information to drivers on traffic conditions. We have developed algorithms to generate traveler information using time-series statistical models based on data collected from cellphone networks. The developed methods integrate historic data on recurrent conditions that are accumulated over time with real-time information. We also estimated the potential to improve drivers’ route selection and reduce their travel times using different levels of sophistication in the generation of the information to drivers and making different assumptions about the availability of data.