Skip to content

Opportunity and Exploratory (O&E) Grants

O&E Grants provide individuals or small groups of faculty and students the opportunity to engage in safety-related research within their areas of interest and expertise. O&E Grants provide seed funding to explore new and emerging concepts, technologies, and methods with promising safety enhancement applications. All O&E Grants are competitively awarded, and typically each grant will be performed at one university with single-source or in-kind matching funds. The first round of O&E Grants was awarded in 2014. These projects have transferred a significant amount of technology to the field of transportation safety.

PROJECT TITLE UNIVERSITY PI
Connected and Automated Vehicles: What are the implications of partial adoption? UT Asad Khattak
Technology based risk mitigation strategies to improve older driver safety Kentucky Adam Kirk
Electric bikes in bikeshare systems and big data: opportunities to assess widespread safety and health Tennessee Chris Cherry
Development of a connected vehicle test bed on UT campus Tennessee Lee Han
Can you hear it now? A study of personal listening devices and pedestrian safety North Carolina A&T Maranda McBride
Disaster analytics: Disaster preparedness and management through online social media Central Florida Samiul Hasan
A scalable augmented reality testbed for automated and human-driven vehicle coordination experiments Tennessee Subhadeep Chakraborty


In March 2016 STC announced the new O&E projects for that year. This solicitation specifically targeted projects addressing the safety implications of CAVs, CI, and other advanced technologies, as well as projects addressing transportation security needs and deficient areas.

PROJECT TITLE UNIVERSITY PI
Connected and Automated Vehicles: What are the implications of partial adoption? UT Asad Khattak
Evaluating the potential of connected vehicles in combating wrong-way driving UCF Haitham Al-Deek
Big Data Analytics for connected vehicle data infrastructure resilience Clemson Mashrur Chowdhury
Development of safety performance indices in a connected vehicle environment UK Adam Kirk
Development of a security platform for vehicle to infrastructure network Clemson Mashrur Chowdhury

PROJECT TITLE UNIVERSITY PI
Connected and Automated Vehicles: What are the implications of partial adoption? UT Asad Khattak
Automated Traffic Surveillance from an Aerial Camera Array

Final Report 
Clemson Wayne Sarasua
Intervention Strategies for Unsafe Cell Phone Usage Among Teen Drivers

Final Report
NCA&T Maranda McBride
Evaluating the Wrong-Way Driving Incidents Problem on the Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise Roadway System

Final Report
UCF Haitham Al-Deek
Development and Evaluation of Coordinated Traffic Signal Emergency Preemption System

Final report pending
UK Adam Kirk
Promoting Safe Transportation Among Older Drivers: Risk Assessment via Driving Simulator Technology

Final Report
USF Jerri D. Edwards
New technologies and bicycle safety

Final Report
UT Chris Cherry
Utilizing Assistive Technology to Remove Communication Barriers in the Public Transportation System for Passengers with Disabilities

Final Report
UT Rupy Sawhney

Technology transfer resulting from 2014 O&E projects:

Wayne Sarasua, Automated Traffic Surveillance from an Aerial Camera Array:

  • Zhao, X., D. Dawson, W. Sarasua, and S. Birchfield, “Automated Traffic Surveillance from an Aerial Camera Array,” August 2014, White paper.
  • Sarasua, W, “Automated Traffic Surveillance from an Aerial Camera Array” Presented at the STC Research Conference, Southeastern Region, Southeastern Transportation Center, Knoxville, TN, Sept 2014. Presentation.
  • Zhao, X., D. Dawson, W. Sarasua, and S. Birchfield, “An Automated Traffic Surveillance System with Aerial Camera Arrays: Data Collection with Vehicle Tracking,” Presented at Transportation Research Board 95th Annual Meeting 16-6783), January 2016 Publication and Poster
  • Zhao, X., D. Douglas, W. Sarasua, and S. Birchfield. An Automated Traffic Surveillance System with Aerial Camera Arrays: Data Collection with Vehicle Tracking, 2016 UTC Conference for the Southeastern Region, Southeastern Transportation Center, Knoxville, TN, April 2016. Poster
  • Zhao, X., D. Dawson, W. Sarasua, and S. Birchfield, “An Automated Traffic Surveillance System with Aerial Camera Arrays: Data Collection with Vehicle Tracking,” Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering, ASCE, July, 2016 Publication (Note: the paper was just revised based on reviewer comments and is going through editorial review prior to publication)
  • Two other papers two Ph.D. dissertations are in progress. The researchers also plan to pursue a patent.

Maranda McBride, Intervention Strategies for Unsafe Cell Phone Usage Among Teen Drivers:

  • Exploring Protection Motivation Theory in the Public Sector: Should Government Agencies Develop Personalized Highway Safety Campaigns? 2015 Pre-ICIS Workshop on Public Sector Information Systems: Service, Governance, and Citizen Engagement Challenges, Fort Worth, Texas, Dec 13-16, 2015.
  • Distracted driving: How individual differences influence youth texting while driving behavior. Transportation Research Board (TRB) 2016 Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, Jan 10-14, 2016.
  • Psychosocial factors related to distracted driving among teens: New and emerging trends. 2016 University Transportation Center (UTC) Conference for the Southeast Region, Knoxville, Tennessee, Mar 31-Apr 1, 2016.
  • Texting while driving among teens: Exploring user perceptions to identify policy recommendations. Digital Government Society (dg.o 2016) Conference, Jun 8-10, 2016, Shanghai, China.
  • Another conference paper, Teen texting while driving: Factors influencing this epidemic behavior, has been accepted by the Human Factors and Ergonomic Society 2016 Annual Meeting committee and is scheduled to be presented on September 21, 2016. In addition, a journal article titled Integrating the Theory of Planned Behavior and Psychosocial Factors to Explore Texting among Adolescent Drivers in the US was submitted to the Journal of the Association for Information Systems and is currently under review.

Haitham Al-Deek, Evaluating the Wrong-Way Driving Incidents Problem on the Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise Roadway System

  • Rogers, J., Al-Deek, H., Alomari, A., Gordin, E., and Carrick, G., “Modeling the Risk of Wrong-Way Driving on Freeways and Toll Roads.” Poster Presentation at the Transportation Research Board (TRB) 95th Annual Meeting, 2016. Accepted for publication in Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board.
  • Rogers, J., Sandt, A., Al-Deek, H., Alomari, A., Uddin, N., Gordin, E., Dos Santos, C., Renfrow, J., and Carrick, G., “Wrong Way Driving Multifactor Risk-Based Model for Florida Interstates and Toll Facilities.” Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board. No. 2484, pp. 119-128. DOI 10.3141/2484-13.
  • H., Rogers, J., Sandt, A., Al-Deek, H., and Alomari, A. Wrong Way Driving Multifactor Models for Florida Limited Access Facilities. Presentation at the Road Safety and Simulation Conference, Orlando, Florida, October 6-8, 2015.
  • Sandt, A., Al-Deek, H., Rogers, J., Alomari, A., and Gordin, E. Modeling Driver Responses to Wrong-Way Driving Countermeasures through a Driver Survey and Countermeasure Implementation in Florida. Poster Presentation at the Transportation Research Board (TRB) 95th Annual Meeting, 2016.
  • Rogers, H. 3 Minute Thesis and Dissertation Competition. Presentation of John H. Rogers Ph.D. dissertation in 3 minutes at the Spotlight Event sponsored by Southeastern Transportation Center (STC), Smith and Wollensky, Washington, D.C., January 10, 2016.

Jerri Edwards, Promoting Safe Transportation Among Older Drivers: Risk Assessment via Driving Simulator Technology

  • Edwards, J.D., Lister, J.J., Lin, F.R., Andel, R., Brown, L.M., & Wood, J. (in press). Association of hearing impairment and subsequent driving mobility in older adults. The Gerontologist.

Chris Cherry, New Technologies and Bicycle Safety

I Bike KNX is a free app for Knoxville cyclists, affiliated with a web map developed to improve bicycle safety. It is available in android and iOS versions and uses the inbuilt smartphone GPS to track users’ trips. Cyclists can use this app to record trips, view the trip summary (miles, total time, etc.), view routes traveled, and review these saved trips later. I Bike KNX users access this map at http://cycleknox.phillipgoldfarb.com/gis-routes/.

The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System and partner in the Tennessee Transfer Pathway.