DOT awards a Tier 1 UTC to ISE

April 30, 2012

Dr. Burak EksiogluDr. Burak Eksioglu, Associate Professor of Industrial and System Engineering, has been awarded a $3.5M grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) to establish a Tier 1 University Transportation Center (UTC).

After a very competitive selection process, USDOT awarded ten Tier 1 UTCs, each of which will try to advance U.S. technology and expertise in the many disciplines comprising transportation through research, education, and technology transfer. The theme of the UTC at MSU will be to promote the development of an integrated, economically competitive, efficient, safe, secure, and sustainable national intermodal transportation network by integrating all transportation modes for both freight and passenger mobility.

The U.S. is the world leader in the efficient transport of goods because of its extensive combination of public, private, and natural resources on the land, including rail and road, and its use of inland waterways and aviation. The overall effectiveness of the national transportation system can further be improved with an increased emphasis on intermodal connectivity and the rational utilization of all available modes of transportation. Moreover, the continued economic preeminence of the U.S. depends upon, among other things, a highly competitive, safe, secure, and sustainable intermodal transportation system. From a unimodal perspective, the U.S. has developed one of the best freight rail and surface freight systems, shipping terminals, and aviation systems in the world. Passenger transport systems are making great strides. However, because each mode of transportation evolved independently, they are not well integrated and thus lack connectivity. As a result, transferring passengers and freight from one mode to another is difficult and often economically inefficient. Furthermore, some modes are over-utilized, and create delays and hazards, while other modes suffer excess capacity because they are under-utilized. This unbalanced and inefficient use of modal assets results in highway and airport congestion, air pollution, and excessive costs to passengers, in general, and businesses, in particular.

Dr. Eksioglu will be working with investigators from the University of Denver, University of Mississippi, Louisiana State University, and Hampton University to achieve the goals of the UTC.

More information can be found at the following web sites: