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



Research and Development (R&D) Project Sites

Project Information
Project ID:   FHWA-PROJ-12-0045
Project Name:   Intelligent Situation Awareness and Navigation Aid for Visually Impaired Persons
Project Status:   Active
Start Date:  May 3, 2012
End Date:  May 2, 2016
Contact Information
Last Name:  Yousuf
First Name:  Mohammed
Telephone:  202-493-3199
E-mail:  mohammed.yousuf@dot.gov
Office:   Office of Operations Research and Development
Team:   Trans Enabling Technologies Team [HRDO-10]
Program:   Exploratory Advanced Research
Project detail
Roadmap/Focus area(s):   Livability
Project Description:   In Phase I, the goal is to explore and develop situation awareness and assistive navigation technologies to provide blind or visually impaired persons with obstacle avoidance and intelligent wayfinding capabilities in indoor environments by using wearable sensors (e.g., cameras, 3D-orientation sensors, pedometers). In Phase II, the technology will be further improved and research will be extended to outdoor pedestrian environments to provide blind users with waypoint navigation, path planning, and advanced warning of events through interaction with GPS, Geographic Information System (GIS), and Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) infrastructure.
Development of a Concept of Operations (ConOps), data needs, and market analysis.
Development of a prototype.
More Information URL(s):  
  1. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/advancedresearch/pubs/15040/15040.pdf
Test Methodology:   Leverage experience in computer vision and develop a real-time hierarchical compositional model for object detection.
Expected Benefits:   Increase mobility of travelers with disabilities and explore use of situational awareness in other areas.
FHWA Topics:   Research/Technologies--Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC)
TRT Terms:   Pedestrians
FHWA Disciplines:   Operations
Subject Areas:   Data and Information Technology
Safety and Human Factors


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