Safe-D: Safety through Disruption

Smart Work Zone System​


In the previous Safe-D project 04-104, a prototype wearable Personal Protective Equipment vest was developed and demonstrated that accurately localizes, monitors, and predicts potential collisions between work zone workers and passing motorists. The system also notifies the worker of when they’re about to depart safe geo-fenced safe areas within work zones. While the design supported a successful functional demonstration, additional design iteration is required to simplify, ruggedize, and reduce per unit costs to increase the likelihood of broader adoption. In addition, two new useful components were identified that would support a more effective deployment package. A base-station will be added that provides an edge computing environment for alert algorithm processing, consolidates communications of individual worker positions via a 4G link to a cloud computing environment, and can be coupled with a local RSU to support the broadcast of work zone information to connected vehicles. In a addition, a smart cone device will be added that can help automatically define safe area boundaries and improve communications reliability between workers and the base station. The entire package is being developed to support a broader scale deployment of the technology with the Virginia Department of Transportation.

Project Highlights

Coming Soon!

Final Report

Coming Soon!

EWD & T2 Products

Project Information Sheet can be found here

The following PDF provides a technology highlight of the Smart Work Zone System.


Coming Soon!

Research Investigators (PI*)

Mike Mollenhauer (VTTI/VT)*
Elizabeth White (VTTI/VT)
Jean Paul Talledo Vilela (VTTI/VT)

Project Information

Start Date: 2021-03-01
End Date: 2022-05-24
Status: Active
Grant Number: 69A3551747115
Total Funding: $287,472
Source Organization: Safe-D National UTC
Project Number: VTTI-00-036

Safe-D Theme Areas

Connected Vehicles

Automated Vehicles

Safe-D Application Areas

Vulnerable Users
Planning For Safety
Operations and Design

More Information

UTC Project Information Form

Sponsor Organization

Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology
University Transportation Centers Program
Department of Transportation
Washington, DC 20590 United States

Performing Organization

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Virginia Tech Transportation Institute
3500 Transportation Research Plaza
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061