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

Skip to content

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

Operations Research and Development (R&D) Topics


Topic Description
Active Transportation and Demand Management Active Traffic and Demand Management implies a pro-active approach for dynamically managing and controlling traffic demand and available capacity of transportation facilities, based on prevailing traffic conditions, using one or a combination of real-time and predictive operational strategies.
Analysis, Modeling, and Simulation (AMS) Analysis, modeling, and simulation use mathematical and computational techniques to represent the operation of the surface transportation system in order to assess the performance of new concepts, alternative strategies, and varying conditions.
Arterial Management Traffic signals and the design of arterial facilities affect us daily as we travel to and from work, school, shopping and recreational facilities. There are an estimated 272,000 traffic signals in the United States and each has a profound impact on how safely and efficiently we share the space of intersections as we travel to our destinations.
Connected Vehicles Connected Vehicles is a multimodal initiative that aims to enable safe, interoperable networked wireless communications among vehicles, the infrastructure, and passengers' personal communications devices. Connected Vehicles research is being sponsored by the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) and others to leverage the potentially transformative capabilities of wireless technology to make surface transportation safer, smarter, and greener.
Integrated Corridor Management Through the Integrated Corridor Management Systems initiative, the USDOT provides guidance to assist agencies in implementing Integrated Corridor Operations, creates supporting analysis tools, approaches, and technical standards, and demonstrates the value of Integrated Corridor Management.
ITS Standards Deployment The intelligent transportation systems (ITS) standards have been developed by standards development organizations (SDO) through a consensus process to ensure open, nonproprietary interfaces. Agencies are being asked to incorporate the ITS standards into upgrades and enhancements of existing systems, and into new systems.
Localized Bottleneck Reduction Within the Office of Operations, the Localized Bottleneck Reduction (LBR) Program serves to bring attention to the root causes, impacts, and potential solutions to traffic chokepoints that are recurring events; ones that are wholly the result of operational influences.
Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, or MUTCD, defines the standards used by road managers nationwide to install and maintain traffic control devices on all public streets, highways, bikeways, and private roads open to public traffic.
Operations Performance Measures Operations performance measurement measures progress toward meeting the objectives of transportation system management and operations. Although the specific objectives of management and operations activities vary among organizations, most relate to the overall goals of transportation mobility, productivity, and safety.
Planning for Operations Tolling and pricing is a tool that can be used in congestion management. This program incorporates a number of demonstration and pilot programs to encourage agencies to consider the use of tolling and pricing in their transportation systems.
Planning for Special Event and Disaster Transportation The Federal Highway Administration, through Emergency Transportation Operations programs, provides tools, guidance, capacity building, and good practices that aid local and State DOTs and their partners in their efforts to improve transportation network efficiency and public/responder safety when a nonrecurring event either interrupts or overwhelms transportation operations.
Real-Time Transportation Information Management The Real-Time Transportation Information Management Program seeks to enable nationwide availability of real-time transportation information to allow travelers to make better choices—choice of time, choice of mode of transportation, and choice of route.
Road Weather Management The Road Weather Management Program seeks to better understand the impacts of weather on roadways, and promote strategies and tools to mitigate those impacts. One of the major initiatives of the Road Weather Management Program is the Clarus Initiative, a six-year effort to develop and demonstrate an integrated surface transportation weather observation data management system.
Traffic Incident Management Traffic Incident Management (TIM) is a planned and coordinated process by multiple public agencies and private sector partners to detect, respond to, and remove traffic incidents and restore traffic capacity as safety and quickly as possible.
Work Zone Managing traffic during construction is necessary to minimize traffic delays, maintain or improve motorist and worker safety, complete roadwork in a timely manner, and maintain access for businesses and residents.

Office of Operations R&D Links

» Office of Operations R&D
» Operations R&D Laboratory
» Operations R&D Projects
» Operations R&D Experts
» Operations R&D Publications
» Operations Topics


Other Operations Links

» FHWA's Office of Operations
» Research and Innovative Technology Administration's Intelligent Transportation Systems Connected Vehicle Research
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