is the lead organization in the partnership involving NIATT, FHA, the
Idaho Transportation Department, Purdue University and the University
“Many traffic signals are not timed or maintained properly," said NIATT Director Michael Kyte, the principal investigator for the project. A poorly designed traffic signal system at intersections can increase congestion, fuel consumption and accidents, and can add to air pollution, transportation engineers contend.
In fact, fuel consumption at poorly timed traffic signals accounts for nearly 20 percent of the total fuel consumed by the nation’s travelers each workday.
The concept of hands-on training for traffic signal timing has been a priority for NIATT for several years. NIATT has conducted a Traffic Signal Summer Workshop each August since 2000. The workshop has served 60 students from more than 25 U.S. universities.
Kyte noted that UI transportation engineering professors Michael Dixon and Ahmed Abdel-Rahim provide the depth and experience needed to support NIATT’s traffic signal operations and control initiatives. They are co-investigators for this project.
The U. S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) supports about one-third of NIATT's operation as a University Transportation Center. The center conducts about $2 million in research, education and training of working engineers.
NIATT is one of 26 university-based centers of excellence established by USDOT, which advances technology and expertise in the many transportation disciplines through education, research and technology transfer.