US DOT Enlists Charles River Analytics to Improve Cycling Safety

Image of men on bicycles, Main St project from Charles River Analytics.

Charles River Analytics Inc., developer of intelligent systems solutions, has announced a contract to build an interface that will improve bicycling safety. The two-year, follow-on contract for a Multimodal Alerting Interface with Networked Short-range Transmissions (MAIN-ST) was awarded by the US Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, and is valued close to $750,000. Charles River is teaming with Virginia Tech Transportation Institute and Motivate on the MAIN-ST effort.

“Connected vehicle and infrastructure technology holds the potential to revolutionize safety and efficiency of roadway transportation,” explained Dr. Michael Jenkins, Senior Scientist at Charles River and Principal Investigator on the MAIN-ST effort. “For this technology to truly realize its potential, it must provide connectivity for all shared roadway transportation options. Bicyclists represent a class of vulnerable roadway users that to date have been largely overlooked with respect to development of technology to bring them onto these networks and provide benefits directly to cyclists. We are developing the technology to begin to address these problems. Using a combination of commercially available hardware and custom software algorithms and processing methods, we are providing the foundation to bring bicycles onto connected vehicle and infrastructure networks, while also providing cyclists with a smartphone application that allows them to plan safer trips and make safer riding decisions while en route.”

In the MAIN-ST effort, Charles River is building on previous research and development in the BARRACUDA effort to improve safety for motorcyclists. BARRACUDA centers on an augmented reality display to increase route hazard awareness for motorcyclists.

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