Honda Selected by Ohio Department of Transportation to Spearhead Two-Year Initiative for Enhanced Road Condition Management System

    Honda, in partnership with i-Probe Inc., The University of Cincinnati, and Parsons Corporation, is set to pilot an advanced prototype of a road condition management system in collaboration with the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT). ODOT has invested $700,000 in the project to support data analysis and evaluation.

    The main objective of the project is to utilize vehicle-generated data to identify and report hazardous road conditions in Ohio. By leveraging the research conducted in 2022 and the Honda Drive Data Service, Honda will lead the project, while funding will cover the project work by the three partner companies.

    The road condition management system aims to make roadways safer by enabling maintenance crews to more quickly address roadway damage. ODOT is responsible for the maintenance of nearly 50,000 lane miles and almost 45,000 bridges across the state. Through early identification of issues such as potholes or damaged guardrails, the maintenance crews will be able to respond faster and make repairs before conditions worsen. The vehicle-generated data will enable instant access to near real-time information, potentially reducing the need for time-consuming visual inspections.

    As part of the two-year research project, Honda test vehicles equipped with Advanced Driver Assistive Systems (ADAS) will collect road condition data on select routes in Ohio. This data will be analyzed and evaluated to pinpoint roadway damage and inform road maintenance operations. The goal is to develop an active road maintenance system that collects anonymized road hazard information for analysis and appropriate action by road maintenance crews.

    The project not only aims to increase efficiencies and potential cost savings for Ohio but also to enhance road safety and reduce the cost to consumers associated with vehicle damage due to road hazards.

    The road condition management system project builds upon a pilot program conducted by the Honda Research Institute in 2022. The pilot program evaluated a road condition management system using GPS coordinates and cameras to collect real-time road condition information.

    In addition to benefiting ODOT and the state of Ohio, the partners believe that empowering drivers to participate and contribute to building safer roadways will significantly enhance the overall customer experience and improve the efficiency of maintenance work for road operators.

    The project will focus on various roadway conditions, including roadway striping deficiencies affecting driver assistance features, pothole development, ride quality of the road, guardrail and cable road barrier damage, road sign wear, and condition of berms.

    The roadway condition data collected by Honda and its partners will be provided to ODOT through a web dashboard. ODOT will use this data to enhance its regular visual inspections. The results of the analysis will further improve the machine learning algorithm used by Honda to generate the web-based dashboards. After the project, ODOT will evaluate the long-term possibilities and value of such data for maintenance and other operations.

    Executive directors and representatives from the involved organizations expressed their excitement about the project. DriveOhio Executive Director Preeti Choudhary stated that integrating vehicle data into operations has the potential to be a game-changer in better serving Ohio drivers and increasing roadway safety. Sue Bai, Chief Engineer and Chief of Data Business at American Honda Motor Co., Inc., mentioned that the project will contribute towards Honda’s goal of achieving zero traffic-collision fatalities and create safer and smoother roadways. Daisuke Oshima, CEO of i-Probe Inc., highlighted their role in collecting and analyzing big data obtained from vehicle sensors to provide infrastructure condition information services. Munir Nazzal, the Director of UC’s Center for Smart, Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure (CSSRI), expressed their excitement to help ODOT in achieving its mission. Jodie Bare, Vice President of Global Digital Services & Operations for Parsons, emphasized the opportunity to leverage innovative ideas and emergent technology for the Ohio DOT.

    Each partner brings unique expertise to the project. Honda has extensive knowledge of vehicle-generated data and can serve as a significant source of anonymized connected vehicle data. i-Probe Inc. specializes in collecting and analyzing data obtained from vehicle sensors to provide infrastructure condition information services. The University of Cincinnati has industry leaders with knowledge and experience in using vehicle sensors for infrastructure assets evaluation and management. Parsons is a world-class leader in Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) and has a deep understanding of transportation management centers.

    Honda and its partners aim to deliver the most impactful project based on ODOT’s requirements while creating a vision for the scalability of the road condition management system.

    The article concludes by highlighting Honda’s commitment to safety and their global goal of achieving zero traffic collision fatalities involving Honda motorcycles and automobiles by 2050. Honda operates advanced crash-test facilities in Ohio and Japan and has established numerous efforts in crashworthiness, collision compatibility, and pedestrian safety. They also mention their advanced passive safety features and active safety systems found in Honda Sensing® and AcuraWatch™ technologies.

    The project’s goal is to not only improve road safety but also enhance the overall driving experience and prepare infrastructure for future mobility needs, including autonomous vehicles. The partners believe that by empowering drivers to contribute to building safer roadways, they can create a sense of shared ownership and pride, ultimately achieving their goals of safer and smoother roadways.

    For more information about Honda’s commitment to safety, readers are directed to visit the Honda website. Additionally, readers can access the Honda Digital FactBook for more details about Honda.

    Source: Honda

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