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Federal Highway Administration / Publications / Focus / May 2007

Accelerating Infrastructure Innovations

Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-07-013
Date: May 2007

TIG Announces 2007 Focus Technologies

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials' (AASHTO) Technology Implementation Group (TIG) has selected Self-Propelled Modular Transporters (SPMTs) and Automated Machine Guidance (AMG) as its focus technologies for 2007. TIG's goal is to promote high payoff, innovative technologies that State and local transportation agencies and industry can use to improve the Nation's highway system.

SPMTs are multi-axle, computer controlled transport platforms that can maneuver with remarkable flexibility and be used in the removal, support, and installation of bridge sections, thus accelerating project schedules and reducing the impact to drivers. The vehicles can move in any horizontal direction, while maintaining their payload geometry and keeping equal axle loads. SPMTs also have vertical lift. The technology was first identified in a 2004 scanning tour to Europe sponsored by AASHTO and the Federal Highway Administration (see September 2004 Focus). Since then, SPMTs have been used in a few State bridge projects, including in Florida and Rhode Island (see December 2006 Focus). Florida will serve as the lead State for the TIG implementation effort, which aims to accelerate the adoption of the technology by other States.

AMG integrates a global positioning system (GPS) and computer generated digital terrain models (DTM) into highway construction equipment, automatically guiding the grading equipment and increasing productivity and accuracy. The Minnesota Department of Transportation is among the State agencies that have taken the first steps forward in applying this technology by letting construction projects that use GPS and DTM as project tools.

TIG is currently forming Lead State teams to promote the technologies. Focus will continue to provide updates as the Lead State team initiatives are developed. For more information on TIG, visit aashtotig.org, or contact Keith Platte at AASHTO, 202-624-7830 (email: kplatte@aashto.org).

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