Maintenance Decision Support System Phase V

The purpose of this study was to develop and demonstrate a reliable decision support system for maintenance operations capable of integrating multiple sources of data and providing direct maintenance response recommendations in a strategic and tactical setting. The data sources integrated include weather observations, weather forecasts, fixed and mobile environmental sensor stations data, camera imagery, and maintenance resource information. The resulting software systems were developed to provide support for proactive maintenance decision making before and during adverse weather events, with their utilization resulting in a higher level of service, reduced operational costs, and/or safer highway conditions. Objectives The objectives of the MDSS study were to: * Assess the need for, potential benefit of, and receptivity to MDSS concepts in participating state transportation departments * Define functional and user requirements for an operational MDSS * Build and evaluate an operational MDSS * Improve the ability to forecast road conditions The objectives were addressed during a multi-year research program that spanned four phases of activities including multiple demonstration and deployment transition field tests leading to the development, demonstration, and evaluation of an operational MDSS. Research Tasks This project report represents the progress-to-date of the multi-year, multi-phase efforts of the Maintenance Decision Support System (MDSS) State-led Pooled Fund Study (PFS) designated as TPF-5(054) under the Transportation Pooled Fund (TPF) Program. This TPF study allows federal, state, and other organizations to combine resources to support transportation research studies. The research activities began in October 2002 with four participating states and by October 2007 had expanded to include thirteen participating states. These states, in alphabetical order, are California, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Virginia, and Wyoming. The State of South Dakota serves as the lead state in the Pooled Fund Study project. Meridian Environmental Technology Inc. (Meridian) has served as the prime contractor and as a participating contributor to the research activities since the outset of the study. (1) Based on the results of the evaluation and development of new system components, recommend needed improvements and design modifications and identify operational limitations requiring additional research and development. (2) Upon approval of the technical panel, make system improvements, deploy an improved prototype MDSS in state agency offices in the multi-state test region, and evaluate its performance in actual winter conditions during the winter of 2003-2004. (3) Prepare a final report summarizing methodology, findings in performance, conclusions and recommendations. (4) Make an executive presentation to the project's technical panel and provide electronic copies of the presentation material to participating states.