U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590

Skip to content U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway AdministrationU.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration

Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology
Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

This presentation is an archived publication and may contain dated technical, contact, and link information
Publication Number:  N/A    Date:  August 2012
Publication Date: August 2012


Driverless Cars in 2022: A Follow-on Session to The Driverless Car Summit

PDF Version (798 KB)

PDF files can be viewed with the Acrobat® Reader®

Traffic on a highway

Michael F. Trentacoste

Associate Administrator for Research and Advanced Technology

Federal Highway Administration

6 August 2012

The Transportation Problem


  • 32,788 highway deaths in 2010
  • 6,000,000 crashes/year



  • 4,200,000,000 hours of travel delay
  • $80,000,000,000 cost of urban congestion



  • 2,900,000,000 gallons wasted fuel
CO2 Culprits pie chart: power plants 33%, cars and trucks 22%, major transportation 12%, factories, home heating systems 33%

But, A Big Problem is……

The Driver!

  • Causes over 90% of crashes
  • Has very poor awareness of traffic:
    • Near – Surrounding cars, trucks, buses
    • Mid – A mile down the road
    • Far - Regional

The Role of the US Department of Transportation

  • Develop policies and programs that contribute to transportation that is:
    • Safe
    • Fast
    • Efficient
    • Convenient

Automation As The Solution

Automation: The use of electronic or mechanical devices to replace human labor

Recent Discussion Framework*

Chart showing vertical degree of automation and horizontal degree of cooperation for autonomous vehicles and connected vehicles.  Full automation, control assistance, warning

* Adapted from Shladover, UC PATH (Presentation at TRB Automation Workshop, July 25-26, 2012

Challenges to Deployment of Automation*

  • Public Policy
  • Driver-Vehicle Interaction
  • Information Architecture and Operational Concepts
  • Technology Needs and Constraints
  • Transition and Deployment Strategies
  • Legal, Liability, and Risk
  • Vehicle Safety and Security

* From TRB Workshop, July 25-26, 2012

ITS Research Program Components





V2V V2I Safety
Real Time Data
Capture &
Harmonization of International Standards & Architecture
Human Factors
Systems Engineering
Test Environments
Deployment Scenarios
Financing & Investment Models
Operations & Governance
Institutional Issues


Events Since Driverless Car Summit

  • FHWA Exploratory Advanced Research Workshop (July 24, 2012):  “Early Automation Deployment Opportunities in Managed Lane Operations”
  • Transportation Research Board Joint Committee Workshop (July 25-26, 2012): “Road Vehicle Automation”
  • US Army - US DOT Coordination Meeting (August 3, 2012) 

Approach: Moving Forward

  • Connected Vehicle Program Milestones
    • Safety Pilot Begins August 2012
    • NHTSA Decision expected in 2013
    • Mobility and Environment Applications Development and Testing Continues
  • Vehicle Automation Research Program
    • Continue work on USDOT Vehicle Automation Research Plan and Roadmap
  • TRB Workshop Proceedings and Next Steps
  • Accessible Transportation Research

Growing Opportunity for Benefits of Automation

Persons with Disabilities

54.4 Million People with Disabilities

  • 20% US population; 63% Unemployed
  • Income: $38,400 vs. $61,000
  • Poverty: 24.7% vs. 9.0%
  • Fed Cost: $226 B (2002); $357 B (2008)
Veterans with Disabilities

1.4 Million Disabled Veterans

  • $1 Billion Claims in 2006
  • $6 Billion Claims in 2012

Seniors Age 65 +

  • 35 million in 2004
  • 72 million by 2025

Where Automation Can Take Us...

Automated Trip Planning, Automated On-Demand Accessible Connections, Personal Mobility Vehicles, Mobility, Hearing, Vision, Intellectual, User Needs

Surface Transportation System: Independently Managed Today

Picture 1. Graphic. The picture shows a Traffic Management Center with several rows of people at desks with monitors and several large wall-mounted screens depicting live roadway conditions.
Author: Ed Schipul
Picture 2. Graphic. The picture shows a large toll plaza with several lanes of cars feeding into the toll booths.
Author: Hunter Sunrise
Picture 3. Graphic. The picture shows a single articulated metro bus driving on a roadway.
Released to the Public Domain by author, no attribution required.
Picture 4. Graphic. The picture shows the side of a metro-transit car with two passengers exiting through the open doors onto a platform.
Author : dbking
Picture 5. Graphic. The picture shows a row of bikes parked at a bikeshare facility along a sidewalk.
Author: Agamitsudo
Picture 6. Graphic. The picture shows a birds-eye view of a major freeway interchange with several on/off ramps.

Moving toward Integrated Multimodal Operations

Integrated Goals:

  • Safety
  • State of Good Repair
  • Economic Competitiveness
  • Livable Communities
  • Environmental Sustainability


Graphic showing integrated transportation systems

Integrated System:

  • Payload
  • Vehicles
  • Infrastructure
  • Terminals
  • Connectivity

Copyright Owners.

The photos with author names next to them are available under a common license. Click the author’s name to access the license specific to that photo.

The highway on-ramp photo was purchased  from iStock for this project, and can be used freely for FHWA/TOL presentations - you can find it at http://www.istockphoto.com by searching 000005237320.


Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000
Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101