Connected Vehicle Applications
Applications for the Environment: Real-Time Information Synthesis (AERIS)

2014 AERIS Summer Webinar Series

2013 – 2014 AERIS Fall/Winter
Webinar Series:

The objective of the AERIS research program is to generate and acquire environmentally-relevant real-time transportation data, and use these data to create actionable information that support and facilitate “green” transportation choices by transportation system users and operators. Employing a multi-modal approach, the AERIS Research Program aims to encourage the development of technologies and applications that support a more sustainable relationship between transportation and the environment chiefly through fuel use reductions and resulting emissions reductions.

Research Plan

AERIS Operational Scenarios and Applications

The AERIS program is investigating five Operational Scenarios or bundles of connected vehicle applications, including: Eco-Signal Operations, Eco-Lanes, Low Emissions Zones, Eco-Traveler Information, and Eco-Integrated Corridor Management. Each Operational Scenario encompasses a set of applications which individually achieve environmental benefits. By strategically bundling these applications, the AERIS Program expects that these Operational Scenarios can achieve additional environment benefits above those of the individual applications. Learn more about the AERIS Operational Scenarios and Aapplications.

AERIS Concepts of Operations

Concept of Operations (ConOps) documents were developed for three high-priority Operational Scenarios: Eco-Signal Operations, Eco-Lanes, and Low Emissions Zones. The documents serve to build consensus among AERIS user groups and stakeholders concerning the needs and expectations of the Operational Scenarios and their associated applications. Presentations adapted from the ConOps documents are available by clicking on the links below.

Research Goals

The vision for the AERIS is “Cleaner Air through Smarter Transportation”. The program is investigating whether it is possible and feasible to:

  • Identify connected vehicle applications that could provide environmental impact reduction benefits via reduced fuel use, improved vehicle efficiency, and reduced emissions.
  • Facilitate and incentivize “green choices” by transportation service consumers (i.e., system users, system operators, policy decision makers, etc.).
  • Identify vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V), vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I), and vehicle-to-grid (V2G) data (and other) exchanges via wireless technologies of various types.
  • Model and analyze connected vehicle applications to estimate the potential environmental impact reduction benefits.
  • Develop a prototype for one of the applications to test its efficacy and usefulness.

Research Questions

The AERIS research program is structured around research questions that encompass both the issue of information availability as well as the feasibility of providing greater “choice” to decision makers. These questions include:

  • What vehicle-based data is available – What is the data quality & validity?
  • How can vehicle-based data be integrated with existing traffic and emissions data?
  • What cross-modal public sector applications are needed and what are their benefits?

View an expanded version of these questions.

AERIS: Applications for the Environment Real-Time Information Synthesis

Research Approach

The AERIS program has six major activities focusing on research questions and projects. The program intends to use extensive foundational research as a basis for moving forward with more focused research projects. AERIS will also strive to leverage the work being conducted through vehicle to vehicle communications, other multi-modal research programs, and mode-specific research programs.

Track 1 – Establish the Foundation (Analytics)

Undertake foundational analytics to support a rigorous research program that leverages connected vehicles research and data sets/standards to assess what environmentally-relevant data can currently be acquired, assess if this is the “right” data, examine if there are data gaps, and undertake research that will create the most useful data sets and information to support “green choices.” This foundational research will identify opportunities for further research to develop specific strategies for improving environmental decisions by public agencies and consumers and for improving environmental outcomes through ITS. More>>

Track 2 – Identify Candidate Strategies and Applications

The objective of this track is to identify a number of ITS applications/strategies that can effectively reduce/mitigate the negative environmental impacts of transportation. This track includes screening and characterization of applications/strategies, assessing technology need, conducting high-level cost benefit analyses, and a review and down-select to a set of candidate applications/strategies that seem to be most effective and/or innovative.

  • The Program has identified five Operational Scenarios or bundles of applications; each Operational Scenario encompasses a set of applications which individually achieve environmental benefits. AERIS applications are technological solutions designed to ingest, process, and disseminate data in order to address a specific strategy. More>>

Track 3 – Analyze and Evaluate Candidate Strategies and Applications

The objective of this Track is to examine in-depth the narrowed field of applications/strategies, conduct detailed cost-benefit analyses, modeling, simulations and other activities to validate initial results from Track 2 and further down-select for the most robust applications/strategies. More>>

Track 4 – Recommend Strategies/Applications for In-Depth Testing

Strategies found to offer significant benefits, and reasonable costs, of potential deployment will be considered for further investment in in-depth testing. More>>

Track 5 – Policy and Regulatory Research

This track is specifically oriented toward contributing to the achievement of objectives under the Policy Goal. Research will be undertaken as appropriate and necessary to support work in Tracks 1-4. More>>

Track 6 – Stakeholder Interaction

Identify, meet with, learn from, cooperate with, and get the support of a wide range of stakeholders. Included is attendance at a wide range of workshops, conferences, meetings, etc, to gain knowledge, cultivate support and buy-in for our research, and leverage existing stakeholder activities.

AERIS Progress and Insights

The AERIS Program identified three high priority Operational Scenarios - Eco-Signal Operations, Eco-Lanes, and Low Emissions Zones - for detailed modeling and analysis. Analysis includes the integration of traffic simulation models and emissions models to evaluate the potential fuel use reductions and resulting emissions reductions that can be achieved through connected vehicle applications.

Modeling of AERIS operational Scenarios and applications is currently in progress. While the results are not yet final, preliminary results are coming in and are included in the following presentations.



Webinar Series

State-of-the-Practice Reports

Research on ITS Applications to Improve Environmental Performance (Broad Agency Announcement [BAA]) Reports

Other Resources

Research Contacts

To learn more about this research, contact:

Marcia Pincus
Program Manager, Environment (AERIS) and ITS Evaluation
ITS Joint Program Office
Research and Innovative Technology Administration
(202) 366-9230

Robert Ferlis
Technical Director, Office of Operations R&D
Office of Operations Research and Development
Turner Fairbank Highway Research Center
Federal Highway Administration
(202) 493-3268

Additional ITS Resources on the Federal Highway Administration Office of Operations Website

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