Welcome to the MN Transportation Research Collaboration Site

MnDOT Research Services wants your ideas for the Local Road Research Board, MnDOT Research Program and Research Implementation Program, and this is where we gather them. Register or log in to submit a new idea or vote on the ideas to show your support.

The deadline for new research ideas for the next research RFP is May 18, 2017. Research ideas will be prioritized by TRIG and LRRB in June, and high priority research needs will be posted for university proposals in August. 21 new research projects were funded in December 2016 by TRIG and LRRB. Those project funding awards were posted on the research RFP web site: http://www.dot.state.mn.us/research/RFP/FY2018/index.html .

New implementation ideas can be submitted at any time for development into an implementation plan and funding request. Eight new implementation projects were selected for funding at the April 4 TRIG meeting. (TRIG is a panel of MnDOT office directors and district engineers.) (Click HERE to read the implementation project guidelines and process PDF.)

Contact us: research.dot@state.mn.us

Questions about this web site? 651-366-3760

Visit our web sites: RESEARCH SERVICES - Minnesota Department of Transportation and LOCAL ROAD RESEARCH BOARD, or related web sites MnDOT research programs and offices and TRB Publications (MnDOT internal web site)

Campaign: Traffic and Safety

Enhancing transportation system resiliency through V2I/V2V technology

Transportation network plays an important role in maintaining the functionality of the city. After a disaster happens, the traffic pattern can be dramatically changed due to the road failure, population evacuation, or rescue efforts. Due to the incompleteness of information, drivers may underreact to the disaster, resulting in safety risks, or overreact, leading to exacerbated congestions. Both scenarios may cause further ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Xin Wang

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : University of Wisconsin-Madison

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : TBD

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

This research will provide a framework to evaluate the benefit of the future deployed V2I/V2V, especially under the disaster scenario (e.g., the reduction of population threatened by disasters). In addition, the proposed framework can also be widely generalized to evaluate the enhancement of daily operation capabilities of the agency.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Materials and Construction

Characterization of Particle Shape Distribution of Construction Aggregates

There are huge research needs in the construction aggregate community to better understand the aggregate shape effect on the construction materials such as paving concrete, and to develop a systematic metrics for shape characteristics to optimize the mechanical performances of the aggregate-based materials. The current guidelines and standard specifications for use of construction aggregates (such as ACI 211, ASTM C33, ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Seung Jae Lee; Chang Hoon Lee; Moochul Shin

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : Florida International University; Western New England University

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : John Siekmeier

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

The potential benefits of this research will include advanced understanding of the effect of particle shape distribution on the engineering properties of aggregate-based materials, which will significantly enhance the predictive capabilities in the material performance estimation. The outcome will improve the mix design and material sustainability by identifying the optimal aggregate blends. Considering Minnesota is one of the leading states producing construction aggregates the most, the research will have a huge impact on the aggregate production industry. Furthermore, the current practice in the aggregate production is unsure of what particle shapes to generate. Therefore, crushers and grinders in aggregate plants have a wide range of different performances in generated aggregate shapes. The new knowledge from this research will significantly influence the industry by better controlling the production process, and in return, a better quality control is expected.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Bridge and Structures

Using I-35W Bridge Vibration Monitoring Response to Understand the Impact of Environmental Effects

The project would identify the impact of environmental effects (temperature and humidity) on natural frequency and mode shapes. The previous study on the feasibility of vibration-based monitoring highlighted the variation of natural frequency as a function of temperature and season; however, the variation was not consistent among mode shapes. In particular, the variation is not linear with temperature and not monotonic ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Lauren Linderman and Carol Shield

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : University of Minnesota; Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo-Engineering

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Paul Rowekamp

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

The project would leverage the investment in the I-35W St. Anthony Fall’s Bridge monitoring and previous vibration signature results to understand the impact of environmental factors on natural frequency. Minnesota bridges experience some of the largest daily and yearly temperature changes and gradients throughout the United States, making bridge monitoring in Minnesota more challenging than in many other states. The results from the proposed project could be expanded to the long-term monitoring of bridges throughout Minnesota. 


Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Traffic and Safety

The real value of Toward Zero Death

The real value of TZD has not been shown in terms of lives saved including reduced serious/minor injuries along with health care cost savings and employee/employer’s cost savings. The data to date reflects the lower number of crashes and related lower fatalities and corresponding injuries. We have not been showing the public the savings data resulting from the fewer crashes that is the result of the TZD program. ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Luane Tasa

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : District 2 State Aid

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Bruce Hasbargen

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

People involved in TZD need to see that their efforts are valued. Currently we see the reduction in crashes and fatalities, however the value of those reduced crashes are only in numbers and the other values in terms of savings in grief, sorrow, and financial are not measured and are the very reason TZD was initiated. The benefits would be to energize the TZD efforts by having annual reports of these savings to the public to raise more awareness of TZD. We have been promoting a 5th E in the NW district and that is Everyone. This is one way of getting the message out that everyone should be involved in changing the culture of safety while driving the highways.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : Joint MnDOT/LRRB Research

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Campaign: Materials and Construction

Performance-based Tack Coat Specification

Functional and structural HMA overlays are widely used pavement preservation technique, where interface bonding can be one of the most important factors affecting the performance. Interface bonding is affected by various factors, including material, application, texture, and other environmental conditions. Tack coat plays a significant role considering low cost and potential damages caused by the premature failure of ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Hyung Jun Ahn and Dave Van Deusen

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : OMRR

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Jeffrey Brunner

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Traffic and Safety

Comprehensive Investigation of Aggregates in Asphalt Mixture Designs and Relationship to Compaction

Compaction is the most crucial factor in constructing durable asphalt pavements. The current asphalt mixture designs use a target of 4% air voids, however, the mixtures are compacted in the field at a target of 7% air voids and in some instances as high as 10% air voids are allowed. Recent research has shown that a different approach, in which the mixtures are designed at 5% and compacted at 5% in the field, could result ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Dave Van Deusen; John Garrity

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : OMRR

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : John Garrity

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

This is a priority for road owner agencies because asphalt mixture density is the primary factor affecting long-term pavement performance.

 

Primary benefits are:

 

1. A better understanding of aggregate materials properties and how they affect the constructability of mixtures they are used in; and

 

2. Improved mixture design procedure to reconcile differences that currently exist between assumptions made in the lab and reality in the field.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Bridge and Structures

Review of Past MnDOT Barrier Types

Many Minnesota bridges have older barriers or parapets that met the design code at the time of original construction but no longer meet current standards. Document the use of post & beam, type G, type J, and type F barriers on MnDOT bridges. How many years was each used? How many bridges have each type? What is the capacity of each barrier type? Develop guidance and criteria for determining when an existing barrier ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : MnDOT Bridge Office

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : MnDOT Bridge Office

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Paul Rowekamp

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : Joint MnDOT/LRRB Research

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Campaign: Bridge and Structures

Use of plastic extrusions to control cracking in concrete barriers

MnDOT has experimented with the use of plastic strips inserted into bridge barrier faces to form crack control joints in parapets and barriers. How are these performing compared to a similar control group?

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Bridge Office

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : MnDOT Bridge Office

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Paul Rowekamp

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : Joint MnDOT/LRRB Research

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Campaign: Policy and Planning

Spatial Analysis of Agriculture Supply Chain to Assess Transportation Impacts

Efficient agriculture movement is critical to Minnesota’s economic health. In the past two decades, the agriculture supply chain experienced a number of market, technological, and policy innovations that have directly influenced the way producers and wholesalers navigate their local freight networks. With producers’ reliance on rural and urban roadways projected to grow, so too are concerns for accelerated pavement degradation, ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Lee Munnich

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : University of Minnesota, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Jon Huseby, District Engineer, MnDOT District 8 (Willmar)

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

As rural and urban roads assume a more exaggerated responsibility for connecting agricultural products to the market place, local freight planners are increasingly seeking informed, innovative solutions to address the growing industry’s transportation needs.

Outcomes of this study can inform MnDOT district and strategic freight network investments. Specific potential benefits include:

-identification of trends in specific districts of the state, that can inform local decision making, such as roadway improvement priorities

-identification of statewide trends, that can inform strategic freight investments

-provision of maps than can be used to facilitate a broader understanding of agriculture supply chain and transportation implications, including among the public and policy makers.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : Joint MnDOT/LRRB Research

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Campaign: Bridge and Structures

Service Life and Performance Assessment of Bridge Decks with Corrosion-Resistant Reinforcement

MnDOT is in the initial phases of designing and constructing a pair of side-by-side bridges on I-35, one with GFRP and the other with conventional steel deck reinforcement. Because these two bridges will be exposed to the same environmental conditions, very similar traffic, and will be constructed within the same timeframe, a unique opportunity exists to identify and evaluate differences in performance between them. Thus, ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Behrouz Shafei and Brent Phares

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : Iowa State University

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Paul Rowekamp

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

Degradation of bridge decks is mainly due to the corrosion of steel reinforcing bars embedded in the deck concrete. Considering the significant time and labor investment needed to repair or replace bridge decks prior to the end of their design service life, the outcome of this project is expected to be an important step forward to implement non-conventional, corrosion-resistant reinforcement, which will improve the durability and performance of bridges, while reducing direct maintenance costs. This will also minimize the indirect costs originated from bridge closure, disruption in traffic, and impact on surrounding environment.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Traffic and Safety

Network-wide impact of freeway bottleneck improvements

Freeway networks in urban areas contain a number of bottlenecks (merge, diverge, weave, curve, etc.) where congestion often occurs. The performance of these bottlenecks may be improved by a number of traffic management strategies such as ramp-metering, variable speed limits, capacity expansion, etc. However, traffic operations at these bottlenecks may not be isolated: an improvement of one bottleneck may impact the performance ...more »

Submitted by

Idea Submitted by : Soyoung (Sue) Ahn

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : TBD

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

This research will help an agency to better assess the operational benefits of freeway traffic management strategies, considering the interactions between bottlenecks and their network-wide impact. Therefore, this research will help an agency develop plans to improve freeway operations more strategically and holistically.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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Campaign: Traffic and Safety

Enhancement and Integration of the TeTRIS and TICAS Freeway Performance Tools

This project would integrate the TeTRIS and TICAS Freeway Performance Tools into one system. The Traffic Information & Condition Analysis System (TICAS) was developed for the RTMC several years ago to help extract RTMC freeway data and develop performance measures for the metro freeway system. TeTRIS is currently being developed to be able to monitor travel time reliability on metro freeways. This project would combine ...more »

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Idea Submitted by : Brian Kary

List your MnDOT Office,District,City, County, Univ. or Other : Metro District - RTMC

Idea Champion - Who at MnDOT/LRRB? : Brian Kary

Why is this a priority and what are the benefits for the State/County/City? :

MnDOT is developing new performance measures to track congestion levels on metro freeways. This tool will allow staff to more quickly access traffic data allowing for more in depth analysis into freeway performance. It will also consolidate existing tools into one.

Project Type - MnDOT or LRRB / Research, Implementation or TRS : MnDOT Research

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