MassDOT Process for Soliciting and Selecting Research Projects

LATEST NEWS:  MassDOT is currently seeking Principal Investigators (PIs) for its FY2023 Research Projects. These projects are listed below. Faculty and researchers who are interested in serving as PI for one or more of these projects are asked to submit brief PI Interest Statements.
DEADLINE: PI Interest Statements are due by FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30TH. 

Online PI Interest Statement Form link: https://tinyurl.com/FY23Research

FY2023 Research Projects:  click on the project title to view the project statement and the overview of the project objectives, deliverables, budget and timeframe. 

1. LIMMS Development Planning

2. Cross-Modal Impact Assessment for Sustainable Transportation Networks

3. Evaluating the Effectiveness of Driver's Education Modules on Safety

4. Accessible Bus Stop Design in the Presence of Bike Lanes

5. Measuring Fare Payment Compliance on MBTA Buses & Light Rail

6. Developing a Visualization, Sharing & Processing Platform for Large-Scale Highway Point Cloud Data 

7. Effect of Asphalt Binder Source on Asphalt Mixture Performance

8. Recycled Ground-Glass Pozzolan (RGGP) for Use in Cement Concrete 

9. 3D-Printed Lattice-based Structures for Next Generation Bridge Bearings & Bridge Isolation Bearings

 

MASSDOT USES A MULTI-STEP PROCESS FOR SOLICITING AND SELECTING RESEARCH PROJECTS FOR FUNDING.

For MassDOT's 2022 Research Project solicitation and selection cycle (for FY2023 projects), MassDOT reached out to potential Project Champions (PCs) and Principal Investigators (PIs) early in 2022.

 MassDOT hosted three Research Roundtables sessions in April 2022 to bring state transportation practitioners and academic researchers together.  The Research Roundtables are part of the Research Problem Statement solicitation process that MassDOT holds each spring.  Research Roundtables bring transportation practitioners and academic researchers together to discuss research, innovation, and state transportation priorities.  

COMPLETED: RESEARCH PROBLEM STATEMENT SOLICITATION
The FY2023 Research Problem Statement Solicitation period ended on May 31, 2022.

Research Problem Statements were submitted through an online form at MassDOT.  Research Problem Statements could either be submitted by MassDOT/MBTA Project Champions (PCs) or by Researchers who have identified a PC and obtained their approval for the submission. If a RPS was submitted by a Researcher, that submission was required to be accompanied by an attached statement from the identified PC indicating their approval for the submission. 

Here is a presentation by MassDOT's Manager of Research Dr. Lily Oliver that gives an overview of MassDOT's process for soliciting and selecting Research Projects.   

The submitted topics should be related to surface transportation or intermodal transportation.  Also, the Research Problem Statements should address the following:

  • What question(s) is the PC seeking to answer through the project?
  • What deliverables should be part of the project, including any datasets or analytical tools?
  • How will the results of this project be used?
  • How will MassDOT benefit from this project?


COMPLETED:  SELECTION OF PROJECTS BEING PROPOSED FOR RESEARCH FUNDING

During this stage, MassDOT reviews the submitted Research Problem Statements and selects which ones will be advanced for potential funding.   

NOW IN PROGRESS: SUBMISSION OF RESEARCH PROJECT INTEREST STATEMENTS BY RESEARCHERS

During this stage, MassDOT seeks academic researchers to conduct studies on the topics that are proposed for research funding.  A request goes out inviting qualified researchers to apply as PIs for the proposed projects.  MassDOT recently released the list of projects that are anticipated to start in FY2023.  Potential Principal Investigators (PIs) for these projects are asked to submit brief PI Interest Statements.
DEADLINE: PI INTEREST STATEMENTS ARE DUE BY FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30TH. 

Online PI Interest Statement Form link: https://tinyurl.com/FY23Research


Project List:  Please click on a project's name to see the project's Research Project Statement.  Each of these projects is expected to range in duration from 9 to 12 months, to two years or more.   

In addition to submitting a PI Interest Statement, potential PIs should also submit a two-page CV for each PI/co-PI on your project team to Matt Mann, the UMTC Manager of Research, at mattmann (at) umass.edu.  This email should indicate the name of the project(s) for which PI Interest Statement is being submitted.  For PIs interested in multiple projects, a separate PI Interest Statement should be submitted for each. 

FY2023 Research Projects: 
This is the same project list as above, with the same links;
it's provided a second time here for convenience. 

1. LIMMS Development Planning

2. Cross-Modal Impact Assessment for Sustainable Transportation Networks

3. Evaluating the Effectiveness of Driver's Education Modules on Safety

4. Accessible Bus Stop Design in the Presence of Bike Lanes

5. Measuring Fare Payment Compliance on MBTA Buses & Light Rail

6. Developing a Visualization, Sharing & Processing Platform for Large-Scale Highway Point Cloud Data 

7. Effect of Asphalt Binder Source on Asphalt Mixture Performance

8. Recycled Ground-Glass Pozzolan (RGGP) for Use in Cement Concrete 

9. 3D-Printed Lattice-based Structures for Next Generation Bridge Bearings & Bridge Isolation Bearings

SELECTION OF PIs FOR RESEARCH PROJECTS

During this stage, MassDOT selects the PIs for the proposed projects and works with each PI to develop a detailed Scope of Work (SOW).  Funding approval is then sought by the Federal Highway Administration.  The research projects begin once FHWA approval has been obtained and funding received.

FROM THE ARCHIVES: MASSDOT FY2022 RESEARCH PROJECT STATEMENTS 

For FY2022, MassDOT sought PI Interest Statements for the following nine projects.  Please click on a project's name to see the project's Research Project Statement.  Each of these projects is expected to range in duration from 9 to 15 months, to three years or more.   PI Interest Statements for these projects were due during the fall of 2021, and the PIs for each project selected thereafter. 

1. Complete Streets, v2: Respecting the Roots Landscape

2. Data-Driven Approaches for Transit Capital Planning

3. Development of Improved Inspection Techniques using LiDAR for Deteriorated Steel Beam Ends

4. Field Study to Determine Salt Usage Efficiency on Two Pavement Types

5. Methods to Identify Problematic Carriers and Prevent Infrastructure Damage

6. Smart Work Zone Control and Performance Evaluation Based on Trajectory Data 

7. BIM (Building Information Modeling) for Transit Infrastructure

8. Feasibility Study of 3D Printing Applications for Bridge Elements in Massachusetts 

9. Development of a Salt Spreader Controller Program that Correlates Material Dispensation Rate to Roadway Weather Parameters