Highway study focuses on potholes, rough pavement

Published: Jun 15, 2010 3:00:00 PM
Media Contact: Sally Credille, src0007@auburn.edu, 334-844-3447


Jeremy Dawkins

A study by mechanical engineering doctoral student Jeremy Dawkins has been selected for the University of Virginia's IntelliDrive project. The $100,000 proposed research is entitled "Investigation of pavement maintenance support applications of IntelliDrive." David Bevly, Philpott-Westpoint Stevens associate professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Richard Bishop, IntelliDrive consultant and Buzz Powell, assistant director of Auburn's National Center for Asphalt Technology, assisted Dawkins in writing the proposal and will serve as members of his team.

"Our role in the project is to determine whether road roughness can be estimated with typical on-board vehicle sensors and to determine how accurately we can estimate roughness," says Dawkins. "We are also developing algorithms to detect potholes using on-board vehicle sensors."

Powell will provide roughness measurements to validate the estimation algorithms, while Dawkins will work on developing and implementing the algorithms. Bishop will assist with the implementation of the methodologies to develop an IntelliDrive environment and Bevly will oversee the project. Support for Dawkins's study comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation and state departments of transportation involved in the study. The project began in March and will run through February 2011.

IntelliDrive is a federal program that aims to enable safe, interoperable networked wireless communications among vehicles, infrastructure and passengers' personal communications devices to make surface transportation safer and more eco-friendly.

A native of West Chester, Pa., Dawkins received a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in 2006 and a master's degree in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2008. Dawkins plans to teach and conduct research in the area of vehicle-to-vehicle communication for active safety systems.

Contributed by Katie Mullinax