, Former Professor, UMD-Electrical Engineering
The aim of this research is to develop the next generation of R/WIS that can lead the present state of the R/WIS to the next century by rethinking the structure and type of information and the data dissemination methods. The conventional R/WIS is based mainly on weather sensor related information such as road surface temperature, humidity, wind speed, and air temperature. In this research, we propose to develop a new type of R/WIS that not only collects weather sensor information but also collects real time video clips from the road scenes or the locations where Mn/DOT or the public have interest. With the addition of video clips, we will have the benefit of detecting many critical road conditions which were not possible to detect with conventional R/WIS alone. For example, video images can be used to detect low visibility, snow accumulation, blowing snow, smoke, traffic incidents, average traffic flow, and numerous other useful road conditions. The next revolution we propose is to change the basic information dissemination is currently implemented in the state. Presently, communication to field R/WIS stations relies solely on the proprietary structure of the network provided by each supplier of the equipment. This has been the main bottleneck for information dissemination due to the limited capacity of the network boundary and the proprietary protocols used in the network. We propose to develop the R/WIS network based on Internet infrastructure. This will allow dissemination of R/WIS information to almost unlimited nodes with a very small investment.