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Smartphone-based Connected Bicycle Prototype Development for Sustainable Multimodal Transportation System

(Center Identification Number: 79063-17)

Principal Investigator

Achilleas Kourtellis, Ph.D.
Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR)
University of South Florida
4202 E. Fowler Ave, CUT100
Tampa FL 33620
Phone: (813) 974-8073
Email address: kourtellis@cutr.usf.edu

Project Scope

Due to fast development in automobile industry in the past decades, the increasing use of vehicles has
caused serious safety and operation efficiency issues in terms of traffic crashes, congestion, and loss of
productivity. Therefore, a public transit-based sustainable multimodal transportation system has been
advocated to address these traffic issues, in which bicycling, including personal cycling and bike sharing
programs, have been making a comeback as a viable and popular mode for short trips and commutes
between origins/destinations and the nearest public transit (bus, metro, ferry, train, etc.) station for
sustainability and economic value. However, bicyclists suffer high crash and fatality rates due to their
excessive exposure to traffic, especially in Florida. In 2011–2015, there were an annual average of 6,521
bicycle crashes in Florida, resulting in an average of 132 bicycle fatalities and 6,116 bicycle injuries each
year. Connected vehicle technology has significantly advanced in recent years for intelligent
transportation system (ITS) management, but there has been no compatible counterpart research from
the bicycle perspective.

Current connected bicycle innovations from several peer companies take advantage of GPS and smart
mobile technologies and provide a large amount of useful information regarding weather, real-time
traffic, bike speed, positioning, route navigation, and personal biking fitness and performance. However,
it is evident that these technologies provide information from a bicycle perspective but fail to take into
account other transportation components, including vehicles and infrastructure. With these
advancements, it is of practical importance to develop connected bicycle techniques to improve bicyclist
safety, increase the proportion of bicycle use in daily commute, and, therefore, increase the
sustainability of the entire multimodal transportation system.

A fully-connected bicycle system should enable safe, stable, and effective wireless communications
between bicycles and vehicles (B2V) and among bicycles (B2B) and between bicycles and infrastructure
(B2I). A connected bicycle will use low-cost sensors and transmitters as well as GPS, smartphone,
Bluetooth, and other communication systems to transmit its position, direction, speed, behavior and
other critical information to nearby vehicles, bicycles, and infrastructure to attain 360-degree awareness
and to continuously receive information of interest from these parties on the road for safer and more
efficient biking. Therefore, this research proposes a pilot study to investigate the mechanism for B2X
communications and to develop a smartphone-based connected bicycle prototype to enhance the safety
and operation efficiency of a sustainable multimodal transportation system. Connected bicycle
technologies are designed to save lives, improve personal mobility and traffic operation efficiency,
enhance economic productivity, reduce environmental impacts, and transform public agency
operations.

Tasks/Deliverables

The following tasks will ensure the project is completed in a timely manner.

Task 1: Literature and Technology Review
Several related projects have been completed to date that include proof of concept designs and
component building. This task will include a comprehensive literature and technology review of recent
studies and projects that had similar objectives as this study to ensure that findings or lessons learned
are incorporated into the design of this effort.

Task 1 Deliverable: Upon completion of Task 1, the PI will submit a report outlining the Task 1 efforts to
research.center@dot.state.fl.us. This deliverable will outline a background of the available methods and
technologies as well as lessons learned for the development of the prototype connected bicycle system.

Task 2: Identification and Selection of Essential Parameters and Components
The research team will continue to identify the essential parameters needed for a successful proof-ofconcept
prototype of the connected vehicle system. This task also will include selection of technologies
or components that are essential for the prototype to work. These might include but are not limited to
communications protocol between bicycle and other systems, communication component, warning
delivery methods, and/or human machine interface (HMI) for warning delivery.

Task 2 Deliverable: Upon completion of Task 2, the PI will submit a report outlining the Task 2 efforts to
research.center@dot.state.fl.us. This deliverable will provide the selected parameters and technology
components necessary for a working prototype.

Task 3:
Design and Build of Proof-of-Concept Prototype
This task will include the work to design the system, acquire and construct the individual components of
the system, and build a proof-of-concept prototype system that is capable of receiving and transmitting
basic safety messages (BSM) to other systems and providing warnings to users using alerts from the
connected applications.

Task 3 Deliverable: Upon completion of Task 3, the PI will submit a report outlining the Task 3 efforts to
research.center@dot.state.fl.us. This deliverable will provide system design of the prototype.

Task 4: Test of Prototype
This task will include the work to perform the necessary tests to demonstrate the system capabilities
described in the previous tasks. A list of tasks for the prototype tests will be developed, and researchers
will conduct each testing task, collect data, perform analysis, and improve the prototype to achieve the
project goals for the prototype. The system should be able to communicate with other systems and
provide warnings to users about specific safety scenarios.

Task 4 Deliverable: Upon completion of Task 4, the PI will submit a report outlining the Task 4 efforts to
research.center@dot.state.fl.us. This deliverable will provide a summary of tests and results of the tests
of the prototype.

Task 5:
Draft Final and Closeout Teleconference
This task includes two deliverables—a draft report and a closeout teleconference. The draft final report
and closeout teleconference are identified in the budget as one task with a specific dollar amount.

Deliverable 5: Ninety (90) days prior to the end date of the TWO, the University will submit a draft final
report to research.center@dot.state.fl.us. The draft final report will contain summaries of all tasks and a
recommendation for next steps for the research.

Task 6: Final Report
Deliverable 7: Upon Department approval of the draft final report, the University will submit the Final
Report on two (2) CDs in PDF and Word formats. The CDs will be labeled in a professional manner and
include contract number, TWO number, project title, and date. The final report is due by the end date of
the TWO and will be mailed to the Florida Department of Transportation, Research Center, 605
Suwannee Street, MS 30, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0450.

Deliverable 6: Thirty (30) days prior to the end date of the TWO, the PI will schedule a closeout
teleconference. The PI will prepare a PowerPoint presentation following the template provided at
http://www.fdot.gov/research/Program_Information/Research.Performance/closeout.meeting.reqs.pdf
At a minimum, the PI, Project Manager, and Research Performance Coordinator will attend. The
purpose of the meeting will be to review project performance, deployment plan, and next steps.

Designated Personnel

Achilleas Kourtellis, Principal Investigator

Pei-Sung Lin, Co-Principal Investigator

Yu Sun, Co-Principal Investigator

Robert Bertini, Advisor

Graduate Assistants TBD

Project Schedule

It is anticipated that the research project outlined in the scope of work will be completed within 12 months.

 

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  • Florida Department of Transportation
  • US Department of Transportation

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National Center for Transit Research c/o Center for Urban Transportation Research 4202 E. Fowler Ave., CUT100 Tampa, FL 33620-5375