Skip to contentUnited States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration FHWA Home
Research Home
PRESENTATION
This presentation is an archived publication and may contain dated technical, contact, and link information
Publication Number: N/A
Date: January 2012

 

Telling The R&T Story: The Value of Research

PDF Version (1.49 MB)

PDF files can be viewed with the Acrobat® Reader®

A stock photo serves as background to the title slide. The photo shows a street with an overpass at night and has heavy motion blur effects.


Introduction: Moving Innovation

FHWA’s Vital Leadership Role

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) plays a vital leadership role in developing and implementing a coordinated highway research and technology (R&T) agenda that performs the following:

A stock photo shows the installation of a prefabricated bridge superstructure.


Technological Advances

Overcoming Today’s Transportation Challenges

R&T Agenda

The key components of FHWA’s nationally coordinated highway R&T agenda are as follows:

A stock photo shows a worker operating the Eddy Current system, a nondestructive evaluation system for bridges.


The Value of Research

Recent R&T Accomplishments

Five Areas of Advancement

A stock photo shows a traffic signal light attached to a metal bar


The Value of Research

Improving Highway Safety

SafetyAnalyst Software

SafetyAnalyst helps transportation agencies make decisions about site-specific highway improvements. The software’s state-of-the-art analytical tools can be used to identify safety problems and potential countermeasures for reducing the frequency and severity of crashes.

A stock photo shows an empty highway in a hilly, wooded area. An electronic sign alongside the road includes information about highway conditions and speed limits.


The Value of Research

Improving Highway Safety

Interactive Highway Safety Design Model

This suite of software analysis tools can be used to evaluate the safety and operation effects of geometric design decisions on highways. The software is now being used by transportation agencies to predict crash rates on highway corridors and to identify potential improvements.

A stock photo shows a van equipped with nondestructive evaluation tools for detecting and assessing sensors embedded in roadway surfaces.


The Value of Research

Improving Highway Safety

Crash Modification Factors Clearinghouse

The Clearinghouse can help transportation engineers identify the most appropriate countermeasure for their safety needs. The Clearinghouse is available online at http://www.cmfclearinghouse.org/.

A stock photo shows a worker using an Ultrasonic system to inspect a bridge using nondestructive evaluation.


The Value of Research

Improving Highway Safety

Roundabouts

The implementation of one-way, circular intersections known as roundabouts is improving intersection safety across the country.

A stock photo shows several cars driving toward a roundabout.


A stock photo shows an overhead view of an empty roundabout.


The Value of Research

Improving Highway Safety

Ultra-Light Inertial Profiler

This instrumented Segway® is being used to assess the condition of sidewalks and curb ramps and determine if they meet the standards of the American with Disabilities Act.

A stock photo shows a worker using a Segway, the Ultra-Light Inertial Profiler-ADA, to conduct an American with Disabilities Act (ADA) evaluation of sidewalk.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

Hazards Mitigation R&T Program

The program’s research is helping to reduce hazard risks to highways and bridges.

A stock photo shows an arch bridge extending over a wide expanse of water.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

Long-Term Pavement Performance (LTPP) Program

Data collected by the LTPP program have played a critical role in the development and evaluation of every major pavement design methodology developed over the past 20 years, including the Superpave® mix design system and the DARWin-ME pavement design software.

A stock photo shows a machine edging a segment of new pavement with the Safety Edge, consolidating the edge of a pavement to 30 degrees.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

COMPASS

The COMPASS software allows users to optimize the performance of a concrete mixture in a particular environment, resulting in longer-life pavements.

Screen shot from the COMPASS software shows a graph, a file structure, and some data tables. The specific details of the screen shot are not legible.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

Construction Analysis for Pavement Rehabilitation Strategies (CA4PRS)

CA4PRS assists transportation agencies in making accelerated construction a reality by identifying highway rehabilitation strategies that balance construction schedules with inconvenience to drivers and costs to the Agency.

A stock photo shows several workers inspecting a precast, prestressed concrete panel.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

Bridge Inspection Nondestructive Evaluation Showcase

This showcase offers training in the latest nondestructive evaluation tools and systems, which can improve the overall reliability of bridge evaluations.

Stock photo shows the side view of an arch bridge.


Stock photo shows a bridge as viewed from one abutment.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

RealCost

RealCost, a software tool for performing life-cycle cost analysis for pavement selection, provides a cost comparison between two or more competing design alternatives.

Stock photo shows an empty road on a bridge passing over a small stream.


The Value of Research

Improving Infrastructure Integrity

Pavement Materials Laboratories

The numerous forensic tools developed through FHWA’s Materials Laboratories aid in assessing the causes of premature pavement failures.

Stock photo shows a three-lane street, including a middle two-way left-turn lane. There are cars in the right lane.


The Value of Research

Strengthening Transportation Planning and Environmental Linkages

Sustainable Highways Self-Evaluation Tool

Transportation agencies and metropolitan planning organizations can use this tool to evaluate projects and practices and rate a projects’ sustainability using a consistent set of criteria and scores.

The tool addresses the full life cycle of a highway project, from planning through construction to operations and maintenance. It offers users maximum, hands-on flexibility.

The pilot test version is available at http://www.sustainablehighways.org/.

Stock photo shows two workers inspecting a rock cut slope at a construction site.


The Value of Research

Strengthening Transportation Planning and Environmental Linkages

Recycling Solutions

Best practices for increasing the use of reclaimed asphalt pavement are detailed in the FHWA repor, Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement in Asphalt Mixtures: State of the Practice (FHWA-HRT-11-021).

Stock photo shows the calibration of a falling weight deflectometer (FWD).


The Value of Research

Reducing Congestion, Improving Highway Operations, and Enhancing Freight Productivity

A Foundation for Future Mobility

FHWA’s Transportation Operations Laboratory is exploring how innovative technologies can improve the performance of the country’s transportation system.

The new laboratory contains the following:

Stock photo shows an overpass bridge that is under construction.


The Value of Research

Reducing Congestion, Improving Highway Operations, and Enhancing Freight Productivity

Targeted Safety Messages

Research includes testing the Signal Phase and Timing Interface Definition and Prototype, which will define a common two-way interface between vehicle systems, mobile devices, and traffic signal controllers.

Stock photo shows a semi-trailer on a highway.


The Value of Research

Reducing Congestion, Improving Highway Operations, and Enhancing Freight Productivity

Traffic Signal Triggers

FHWA researchers are using step-frequency ground-penetrating radar to develop a nondestructive method for detecting and assessing inductive loop sensors embedded in roadway surfaces.

Stock photo shows an intersection in a residential area. An overhead flashing beacon controls the intersection along with a stop sign.


The Value of Research

Assessing Policy and System Financing Alternatives

Passenger Travel Analysis Framework

The framework will provide States with resources for better analyzing and meeting travel need challenges.

Stock photo shows toll booths stretching across a multi-lane highway. Digital signs over the booths read "Open" and "Closed."


Exploring Next Generation Solutions

New Defining Infrastructure

Cutting-Edge Tools and Technology

In addition to improving safety today, FHWA researches the infrastructure that will define tomorrow, including the following:

Stock photo shows a bridge with ultra-high performance concrete pi-girders extending over a small stream or river.


Moving Innovation

New FHWA Initiatives

Accelerating Deployment

The following initiatives are putting new tools in the hands of the State and local agencies that need them:

Stock photo shows a highway from a distance. Several lanes of the highway are blocked off, with construction vehicles on them. Three lanes on the right side of the photo have normal highway traffic.


For More Information

About FHWA’s R&T Initiatives

Want to Learn More?

More information on FHWA’s R&T initiatives is featured in Telling the R&T Story: The Value of Research (Report No. FHWA-HRT-11-053) available online at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/ research/general/11053/index.cfm.

For additional details, visit http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/research.

Stock photo shows an arch bridge extending over a small stream or river.

 

ResearchFHWA
FHWA
United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration