The Clear Roads pooled fund project began in early 2004 in response to a need for real-world testing in the field of winter highway operations. This ongoing research program has already attracted 26 member states and is funding practical, usable winter maintenance research. Wisconsin DOT led this pooled fund from 2004 to 2009 under TPF-5(092). The Minnesota DOT now leads the project under TPF-5(218).
In this quarterly e-newsletter, you'll find summaries and links to the latest technical news and best practices from the U.S. and around the world, highlighting applications of winter maintenance research and technology and the latest transportation research by state DOTs, universities, TRB and FHWA.
Sensors and other electronic devices used on winter maintenance vehicles are often provided by different vendors, each with its own proprietary communication protocols and data formats. To give DOTs more flexibility and reduce the costs of integrating new components, Clear Roads is working with the vendor community to develop a standard protocol that will allow plug-and-play connectivity for devices from different vendors.
Clear Roads has drafted a specification for a standard communications protocol, and is inviting all interested stakeholders in the winter maintenance community and related vendor organizations to provide comments and feedback.
More information on the project and the draft protocol are available here. Comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org until September 30, 2014. All comments along with Clear Roads’ responses will be posted on the website after the comment period has ended.
Clear Roads has completed a research project that sought to identify low-cost ways to mitigate fatigue in snowplow operators. Clear Roads worked with Virginia Technical Transportation Institute to identify sources of fatigue and develop realistic recommendations for reducing or eliminating fatigue. The Final Report, a Quick-Reference Guide and the Final Presentation are all available here.
Clear Roads just finished a project to understand the status of automated spreader technology. Clear Roads retained the services of Thompson Engineering to develop several guides to help agencies assess the levels of automation available and how best to implement the latest technology into DOT fleets. The Final Report, the Guides, and the Final Presentation are available here.
A new webinar presents the results of this Clear Roads research project. In this 49-minute presentation, project researcher Todd Thompson and Greg Thompson outline the study’s findings and answer questions from the Clear Roads project panel.
March 25-27, 2014
Clear Roads will meet to discuss and rank research projects for 2014 funding and get updates on research in progress.