For immediate release
San Antonio — Dec. 6, 2013 — Southwest Research Institute, a leader in intelligent vehicle technology, is now serving as a Connected Vehicle Affiliated Test Bed, recognized by the U.S. Department of Transportation Research and Innovative Technology Administration. As a Connected Vehicle Test Bed, SwRI supports public and private sector research, testing and demonstrations of innovative, next-generation intelligent transportation technologies.
A connected vehicle network – vehicles exchanging information with the highway infrastructure and other vehicles using safe, interoperable wireless communications – could improve traffic safety, mobility and environmental impacts. The DOT estimates that traffic congestion costs the U.S. economy $87.2 billion annually, with 4.2 billion hours and 2.8 billion gallons of fuel wasted sitting in traffic. Connected vehicle applications can potentially provide transportation agencies with dramatically improved real-time traffic, transit and parking data, making it easier to manage transportation systems for maximum efficiency and minimum congestion.
As a Connected Vehicle Affiliated Test Bed site, Southwest Research Institute offers a 1.2-mile test track and a DSRC-equipped roadside infrastructure across its 1,200-acre facility. The test track includes an intersection with a fully functional signal system as well as various communication towers for roadside equipment and vehicle-to-infrastructure application development and testing. SwRI also maintains a fleet of DSRC-equipped vehicles.
“Advanced traffic management systems have been shown to reduce secondary collisions, mitigate congestion and, most importantly, save lives,” said Michael Brown, a staff engineer in SwRI’s Intelligent Systems Department. “Integrating 5.9 GHz dedicated short range communications (DSRC) infrastructure will further enhance these systems. As an affiliated test bed, SwRI will continue to serve the intelligent transportation community by conducting advanced research and development in connectivity.”
SwRI is one of multiple sites across the country that will support ongoing research, development, testing and demonstration of connected vehicle applications, standards and innovative products. SwRI has numerous facilities and capabilities to support this research, including a 5.9 GHz DSRC antenna test field, a test track and dedicated intelligent vehicle laboratories.
“SwRI has been a pioneer in connected vehicle applications and technology,” said Brown. “Our experience and capabilities in intelligent systems research run the gamut from advanced traffic management and traveler information systems, to commercial vehicles, connected vehicles, vehicle automation and connected automation. These technologies collectively serve to realize the benefits of a fully cooperative transportation system.”
The DOT test bed project facilitates information exchange as well as access to tools and resources across other test bed facilities to support and encourage consistent future deployment of connected vehicle technologies. The project aims to advance the technology for full deployment through information sharing and developing a common technical platform.
For more information, contact Deb Schmid, (210) 522-2254, Communications Department, Southwest Research Institute, PO Drawer 28510, San Antonio, TX 78228-0510.