latest news


The next meeting will be announced at a later date.

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technical director

For more information, please contact Oscar Franzese, Technical Director, at or (865) 946-1304.

Past reseach projects

ABS Indication Lamp Study -- More to come...
Brake Wear and Performance Test (BWPT) -- Performance-Based Brake Testers (PBBTs) are devices that can be used to evaluate the current braking capabilities of a vehicle through the measurement of brake forces developed as a vehicle engages in a braking event while on a PBBT machine. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) passed legislation on February 5, 2003, allowing a PBBT that meets the FMCSA functional specifications to be used as an enforcement tool. (Read more ...)
Heavy and Overweight Vehicle Brake Testing (HOVBT): Five-Axle Combination Tractor-Flatbed -- The HOVBT program was designed to provide information about the effect of gross vehicle weight (GVW) on braking performance. Because the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) limit the number of braking system defects that may exist for a vehicle to be allowed to operate on the roadways, the examination of the effect of brake defects on brake performance for increased loads is also relevant. The HOVBT program seeks to provide relevant information to policy makers responsible for establishing load limits, beginning with providing test data for a combination tractor/trailer. (Read more ... )
NAS Level 1 Inspection and PBBT Correlation Analysis Tool (LPAT) -- The North American Standard (NAS) Level 1 Inspection and Performance Based Brake Tester (PBBT) Correlation Analysis Tool was designed to help analyze and research the correlation between the Performance Based Brake Tester and traditional NAS Level 1 Inspections. It offers the ability to analyze the data separately or in correlation to one another. (Read more ... )
Performance Brake Based Tester (PBBT) Validation Study -- The Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Center for Transportation Analysis, in collaboration with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Tennessee Highway Patrol Commercial Vehicle Enforcement, conducted a PBBT Valuation Study. The purpose of the study was to determine the PBBT’s ability to increase the number of contacts with commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) and explore how the PBBT affects the CMV out-of-service (OOS) rate. (Read more ...)
Overweight Vehicle Data Collection -- The main focus of this effort was to provide the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) with current information about the number and type of oversized and overweight commercial vehicles to develop strategies for future research efforts. Data was collected at the Knox County, Tennessee and Greene County, Tennessee inspection stations within the CMVRTC for a period of one month. Future work will focus on performing Level I inspections on five-axle combination tractor-trailers and the types of violations that overweight vehicles may have. (Read more ... )
Real-Time Dynamic Brake Assessment Proof of Concept -- The real-time dynamic brake assement proof-of-concept research was performed to explore the feasibility of using real-world braking data from commercial motor vehicles to make a diagnosis of brake condition similar to that of the performance-based brake tester (PBBT).  This was done by determining the relationship between pressure and brake force (P-BF), compensating for the gross vehicle weight (GVW). The nature of this P-BF relationship (e.g., low braking force for a given brake application pressure) may indicate brake system problems. (Read more ...)
Smart InfrRed Inspection System (SIRIS) Field Operational Test (FOT) -- The SIRIS is a tool designed to assist inspectors in determining which vehicles passing through SIRIS are in need of further inspection. This is accomplished by measuring thermal data from the wheel components of a commercial motor vehicle as it travels through the system. Infrared cameras mounted on the roadside measure temperatures of the brakes, tires, and wheel bearings on both wheel ends of the vehicle. (Read more ...)
Wireless Roadside Inspection (WRI) Pre-FOT -- The goal of the Pre-FOT is to provide a bridge between the just-completed WRI Commercial Mobile Radio Services (CMRS) Pilot Test (Pilot Test) (31 Jan 11) and the desired large-scale FOT (2014). The Pre-FOT is needed because critical portions of the WRI CMRS Pilot Test were not completed or fully tested (e.g. pull-in/by-pass, safety sensor data present in Safety Data Message (SDM), flexible geo-fencing, carrier interface), and the Government Back Office System (GBOS) was not developed in a way to support real, large-scale WRI testing (e.g., interface not relevant to enforcement, system not stable or robust, safety sensor data not understood by developers). (Read more ...)
Wireless Roadside Inspection (WRI) Pilot Test -- The goal of the WRI Pilot Test was to determine the viability and effectiveness of wireless commercial motor vehicle inspections using currently-existing telematics technologies and systems.  The platform’s effectiveness and the commercial mobile radio services ability to interface with the Government Back Office System (GBOS) were monitored and objectively evaluated. (Read more ...)
Wireless Roadside Inspection Proof of Concept (WRI POC) -- The FMCSA commissioned the WRI Program to validate technologies and methodologies that can improve safety through inspections using wireless technologies that convey real-time identification of commercial vehicles, drivers, and carriers, as well as information about the condition of the vehicles and their drivers. (Read more ...)


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