Friday, December 21, 2007

Road Weather News from Paul Pisano

Paul Pisano, Chair of the AMS Committee on Intelligent Transportation Systems / Surface Transportation , and Team Leader of the Road Weather Management Program at the Federal Highway Administration provides this update (20 December 2007):

Clarus Initiative Coordinating Committee,

Here are a few Road Weather news items that I would like to share with you:

The Clarus Regional Demonstration continues to move forward. The 3 multi-state teams are diligently working on their Concepts of Operation (ConOps), which will describe road weather management strategies that use the quality-checked observations coming from the Clarus system. Eight State DOTs are currently providing data into the Clarus system, along with 3 Canadian Provinces. We are working to add more States to the system through the Clarus Connection Incentive Program. This program provides grants to State DOTs to help get them connected to the system. In addition, we continue to work with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to ensure a smooth transition of Clarus to the operational observing system that they are building.

And speaking of applications that build off of the Clarus system, Release 5.0 of the Maintenance Decision Support System is available via the NCAR Web site.

Looking farther ahead in 2008, there are three conferences worth highlighting. The first two, which will be held back-to-back, are the 4th National Conference on Surface Transportation Weather and the 7th International Symposium on Snow Removal and Ice Control Technology. These conferences will be June 16-19 in Indianapolis , Indiana. The third conference is entitled, “Safety in Mobility 2008: Intelligent Weather Information Systems and Services for Traffic and Transport.” It will be held July 9-11, 2008, in Klagenfurt , Austria .

And of course there are two very big conferences on the immediate horizon: the Transportation Research Board (TRB) and American Meteorological Society (AMS) annual meetings. Here are a few highlights for each:

Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting

TRB will take place in Washington DC from January 13-17, 2008.

-- There will be a spotlight session (#295) on weather and multi-model transportation on Monday, 14 Jan from 1:30-3:15pm. The panelists will be speaking about a variety of weather-related programs and the transition from research to operations

-- Immediately following and in the same room is another spotlight session, #350, entitled “Partnering to Respond to the Perfect Snowstorm: Colorado , New York and Pennsylvania Experiences”

-- The TRB Surface Transportation Weather Task Force will hold their meeting on Monday, 14 Jan from 7:30-9:30pm. Everyone is welcome.

-- Session #465 from 10:15-noon on Tuesday, 15 Jan will focus on “Impacts on Weather on Transportation Operations”

-- Session #494 from 1:30-3:15pm on Tuesday, 15 Jan will focus on Vehicle Infrastructure Integration (VII). Dr. Kevin Petty of NCAR will be making a presentation on “VII-Enabled Road Weather Products and Applications”

-- The TRB Winter Maintenance Committee will hold their meeting on Tuesday, 15 Jan from 7:30-9:30pm. Everyone is welcome.

-- Session #691 from 2:30-4pm on Wednesday, 16 Jan is titled “Weather and Road Surface Conditions”. The focus of this session will be on modeling road weather conditions

-- Session #720 from 4:30-6pm on Wednesday, 16 Jan is titled “Weather Data Applications in Transportation”. The session includes a discussion of a Benefit/Cost Analysis on the Pooled-Fund MDSS

American Meteorological Society Annual meeting

The AMS Annual Meeting will be held in New Orleans from January 20-24, 2008.

-- A joint meeting of the AMS Intelligent Transportation Systems/Surface Transportation Committee (ITS/STC) and the ITS America Weather Information Applications Special Interest Group (WIASIG) will be held from 2-4pm on Wednesday, 23 Jan in the Starboard Room of the Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel. All are welcome.

-- The ITS/STC is sponsoring a one-day course on Surface Transportation Meteorology on Sunday, 20 Jan. While the focus will be on meteorology, all of the instructors will be from this stakeholder group, including State DOT participants.

-- Session 8 of the IIPS Conference is titled “Advances and Applications in Surface Transportation Weather”. This session will run from 8:30am-12:15pm on Thursday, 24 Jan. There will be several interesting presentations on weather applications including Clarus and VII.

We are still in the planning stages for our next MDSS & Clarus stakeholder meetings which will probably take place in the August/September 2008 timeframe. If you are interested in hosting these meetings and have a facility that can hold ~125 people, please let me know.

On behalf of myself and the entire FHWA Road Weather Team, I would like to wish everyone a safe holiday and a healthy new year.

Best Regards,

Paul Pisano
Team Leader, Road Weather Management
Federal Highway

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