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Commercial Motor Vehicle Roadside Technology Consortium (CMVRTC)

The Commercial Motor Vehicle Roadside Technology Consortium (CMVRTC) is a partnership of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Tennessee Departments of Safety and Transportation, and the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). Together, this consortium works to enable FMCSA testing of current, new-to-market, and emerging commercial motor vehicle (CMV) safety technologies and to promote their usage and acceptance by the transportation industry.

Background

In August of 2007, FMCSA launched the Commercial Motor Vehicle Roadside Technology Corridor, in partnership with the Tennessee Departments of Safety and Transportation and DOE's ORNL. In October of 2013, the CMVRTC expanded to include Georgia, North Carolina, Kentucky, and Mississippi. The name of the group changed from the Commercial Motor Vehicle Roadside Technology Corridor to the Commercial Motor Vehicle Roadside Technology Consortium.

The CMVRTC is managed by FMCSA's Office of Analysis, Research, and Technology via an interagency agreement with DOE. The research is conducted by ORNL, a science and energy national laboratory in DOE's system. Since 2007, the Office of Analysis, Research, and Technology has established internal partnerships with the Office of Bus and Truck Standards and Operations, the Office of Enforcement and Compliance, and the Office of Safety Programs (at the U.S. Department of Transportation's headquarters in Washington, D.C.) and with the Southern Service Center in the field. The CMVRTC is available to these and other FMCSA offices with management support provided by ORNL. The Office of Analysis, Research, and Technology has established an external partnership with DOE's Office of Energy, Efficiency, and Renewable Energy to collect CMV safety sensor data from DOE partner fleets. This data will be used to support the objectives of the CMVRTC.

The Vision

The vision of the CMVRTC is to have a series of specially-equipped testing facilities at weigh stations to demonstrate, test, evaluate, and showcase innovative safety technologies under real-world conditions in order to improve commercial truck and bus safety. Additionally, the CMVRTC plays a prominent role in supporting the Agency's technology transfer activities, enabling the accelerated deployment of proven safety technologies.

Goals

  • To showcase inspection technologies and highlight their systematic integration with existing enforcement operations and highway information systems by our State partners and to collect data on CMV safety technologies of interest and assess their viability for deployment.
  • To provide a technology transfer function for new-to-market and emerging technologies by collecting operational data for the development of functional specifications to support Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) grant applications.
  • To collect data to support FMCSA enforcement and compliance programs, State safety programs, policy research, and future rulemaking activities.

Technology Transfer

The CMVRTC has a technology transfer function to aid in the adoption and use of safety technologies by key stakeholders. Specifically, the CMVRTC provides FMCSA with data and supporting information to facilitate:

  • Regulation (rulemaking and pursuant legislation).
  • Promotion (unbiased marketing of technology, e.g., Web site, product guides).
  • Provisioning (via grants, providing funding to States for technology).

FMCSA has aligned future CMVRTC testing and related activities via an overarching methodology that dictates the planning, documentation, and execution of CMVRTC activities in a way that outputs the needed technology transfer tools (validations, specifications, certifications, and safety outcomes).

Validation

Validation will be accomplished via testing (i.e., proof of concept [POC] testing, pilot tests, and field operational tests [FOTs]) using a prescribed test plan. It will involve data collection, analysis, and reporting to determine the technology?s robustness, capability, and user acceptance. The data from the validation will be used to determine the safety outcome.

Specifications

Specifications will be generated in conjunction with the experiences from data gathering and results tabulation during the validation process. This activity seeks to develop a set of functional specifications that may be used to procure a given technology via MCSAP funding or other funding sources, such as direct State purchase. The needs of this output will feed the validation test plan.

Certification

Certification will be granted to technologies/systems that validate their ability to meet established functional specifications. Testing criteria will be developed and testing will be conducted to support certification or non-certification of a given technology or system.

Safety Outcomes

Safety outcomes will be assessed by contrasting and correlating the data from the validation process against other related data gathered within the CMVRTC and against vehicle flow and conventional vehicle enforcement data. This process seeks to show the benefit(s) (positive or negative) that could be gained by implementing a given technology. The needs of this output will also feed the validation test plan.

The CMVRTC has six core functions designed to provide these outputs, as shown in the following table.

CMVRTC Core Functions and Output

Core FunctionScale of EffortEntry CriteriaKey Outputs/Exit Criteria
Technology Down-selection
  • Dependent upon sponsor needs
  • FMCSA Need
  • Technology Grant
  • Down-selection recommendations for FMCSA selection
POC Testing
  • One or two systems
  • Short duration
  • Relatively low cost
  • Very limited testing
  • Repurposed commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) technology
  • Unproven technology
  • Technology demonstration
  • Feasibility evaluation (Validation)
Pilot Testing
  • Several systems
  • Longer duration
  • Controlled testing of a few perturbations
  • Technology concepts which have been somewhat proven
  • Successful prior POC
  • Determination / recommendations regarding potential for large-scale implementation
FOTs
  • Large scale testing
  • Real-world testing environment
  • Off-the-shelf (including new-to-the market) technology
  • Deployment-ready or production-ready technology
  • Successful prior pilot test and/or POC
  • Functional specifications
  • Usage/implementation recommendations
  • Safety outcomes
Technology Certification
  • Dependent on number of technology vendors
  • Once vendors have responded to the functional specification, testing will take place to validate that offering meetings the specification
  • Testing criteria
  • Certification
Demonstration Projects
  • Dependent upon sponsor needs
  • Viable technology and/or partnerships
  • Demonstration unit
  • Demonstration event(s)

Current Activities

FMCSA is currently developing several new tasks to be completed by the CMVRTC. For more information, contact Chris Flanigan of the Technology Division at chris.flanigan@dot.gov.
Updated: Friday, June 23, 2017
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