Cooperative Automated Transportation (CAT)

Cooperative Automated Transportation

Roadway safety in a cooperative automated world

Highway automation is not years away, or even days away. It’s here now, causing a number of state transportation agencies to react with initiatives related to preparing and supporting Connected Automated Vehicles (CAVs) on U.S. roadways.

Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAVs)

Cooperative Automated Transportation (CAT) deals with CAVs, which are vehicles capable of driving on their own with limited or no human involvement in navigation and control. Per the definition adopted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are six levels of automation (Levels 0-2: driver assistance and Levels 3-5: HAV), each of which requires its own specification and marketplace considerations.

Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) and Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAVs)

For traffic safety, vehicle-to-everything communications is the wireless exchange of critical safety and operational data between vehicles and anything else. The "X" could be roadway infrastructure, other vehicles, roadway workers or other safety and communication devices. ATSSA members are at the forefront of these technologies, and are working with stakeholders across new industries to see these innovations come to life.

Sensor Technology

CAVs rely on three main groups of sensors: camera, radar, and Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR). The camera sensors capture moving objects and the outlines of roadway devices to get speed and distance data. Short- and long-range radar sensors work to detect traffic from the front and the back of CAVs. LIDAR systems produce three-dimensional images of both moving and stationary objects.

For more information about ATSSA’s efforts on CAT and CAV’s and their interaction with our member products check out the resources below.



VTTI seeks participants for survey on how connected and automated vehicles will interact with work zones

Luke Neurauter, senior research associate in the Division of Vehicle, Driver and Safety Systems at the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI), is asking ATSSA members and others in the roadway safety industry to take part in a survey on the impact of connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) on work zones.

The purpose is to “better understand how CAV technologies will behave when they encounter typical work zone scenarios and what can be done (from the perspectives of both the CAVs and work zone operations) to ensure ultimate compatibility between all available technologies,” according to information from VTTI Senior Research Associate Tammy Trimble.

The goal of the "Preparing Transportation Agencies for Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAV) in Work Zones" project is to prepare transportation agencies by collecting information on CAV technologies, according to an information sheet for the survey. The research is sponsored by the Transportation Research Board (TRB).

People can take the survey online, via phone or through a virtual meeting. It is estimated to take about 45 minutes.

The survey is open through mid-August. Results will be incorporated into other project tasks, focus group discussions, a cost-benefit analysis and development of educational materials, Neurauter explained in an email to ATSSA.

Neurauter is also hoping to include input from department of transportation (DOT) personnel at the local, state and national levels, contractors, technology developers, operations centers, first responders and related groups and committees.

People interested in joining the focus group can indicate their interest at the end of the survey. Focus groups are expected to meet in the late August to early September timeframe, he said.

Paul Pisano, a transportation operations consultant based in Arlington, Va., is working with Neurauter. Pisano spent three decades with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) where he was a team leader on road weather and work zone management in the Office of Operations. Prior to that, he conducted traffic safety research for a decade, according to his LinkedIn account.


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