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Exploratory Advanced Research Program

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The photo on the Left shows true detections and typical false positives. People are tracked in an urban environment on sidewalks using white bounding boxes. Blue bounding boxes outline trees and objects.

The photo on the Right shows true detections and typical false positives. People are tracked using white bounding boxes in an urban environment with snow covering the ground. The white boxes indicate possible pedestrian objects.

EAR Program Explores Pedestrian Sensing Using Layered Object Recognition

While several researchers have developed pedestrian detection systems, most of these systems have a high false positive rate of detection that incorrectly detects objects as pedestrians. The approach in this project attempts to alleviate this problem by following a layered approach of using multiple cues (depth, motion, shape, and appearance) to detect, track, and classify pedestrians. [more]



Solicitation for Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS)—Deadline: May 4, 2015

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) share an interest in advancing basic and applied research in Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS), which are systems with physical processes tightly intertwined with networked computing. As part of this shared interest, NSF announced a solicitation for CPS including CPS for highway transportation. Proposals are due by May 4, 2015. For more information, see http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=503286&org=ENG&from=home.

NRC Postdoctoral Fellows Help EAR Program Solve Transportation Issues

The Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC) conducts research across a wide range of topics and disciplines. To supplement the expertise of the permanent staff, it is important to bring in researchers with the appropriate backgrounds to investigate specific problems at short-term basis. Through the Exploratory Advanced Research (EAR) Program, FHWA utilizes the Resident Associates (or Postdoctoral Fellows) program of the National Research Council (NRC) for this purpose. The NRC provides a process for selecting candidates on a competitive merit basis and subsequently for administration of the Resident Fellows during their tenures at FHWA. [More]


Highlighted Activities

For Georgia State Students, EAR Program Opens a Window on Transportation Research

For several GSU students, participating in the EAR Program project opened up a new window on transportation issues. [More]

Computer Vision in Highway Transportation Research

Highway transportation research is collecting and analyzing an increasing amount of video data. While the research community is fortunate to be able to collect more and better data, the amount of data has the potential to overwhelm the capacity to assess the data using current methods. [More]

Emission Reductions, Fuel Savings Demonstrated at Turner-Fairbank

On August 23, researchers used TFHRC’s intelligent intersection to provide Signal Phase and Timing (SPaT) and Geometric Intersection Description (GID) data to a test vehicle equipped with an onboard dedicated short-range communication (DSRC) modem, onboard computer processor, and a display device to provide the driver with speed advice. See how this helps cut emissions and energy [More]

Research on the Future

Research of the future

While no one can predict the future, it is important to consider the forces—both likely and unlikely—that are shaping the future. For highway research, this can mean understanding diverse forces from global population trends, to climate change, to breakthroughs in material science. For Exploratory Advanced Research this means looking as much as 30 to 50 years in the future. [more]

Exploratory Advanced Research Program

Research Highlights


The Exploratory Advanced Research Program,(FHWA-HRT-15-023)- December 2014

Multimedia Downloads

Investigating Advanced Traffic Signal Control, (N/A)- April 2011

Project Fact Sheets

Assistive Technologies for Visually Impaired Persons,(FHWA-HRT-15-040)- February 2015

Reference Scans

Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Applications for Highway Transportation,(FHWA-HRT-14-037)- November 2013


National Multimodal Freight Analysis Framework Research Workshop,(FHWA-HRT-14-054)- January 2015

Scanning and Convening Activities Fact Sheets

Understanding Material Durability - Workshop Examines Aging of Composite Materials,(FHWA-HRT-14-068)- June 2014


Technological Innovations in Transportation for People with Disabilities: Workshop Executive Summary(FHWA-HRT-11-042)- September 2011

Web Articles

For Georgia State Students, EAR Program Opens a Window on Transportation Research ()- March 2014

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Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101