Development of a Novel Aerodynamic Solution to Mitigate Large Vibrations in Traffic Signal Structures

This project will develop and test an aerodynamic damping method to minimize large vibrations in traffic signal structures. Work in Stage 1 will begin with mapping out the dimensions and shapes for the signal lights. A modular construction approach for test samples will be implemented to allow testing more configurations. Wind tunnel tests will be conducted to extract aerodynamic parameters that influence the response of the signal light structure. Three types of tests will be conducted: static tests for parameters governing mean buffeting and fluctuating buffeting forces and response; dynamic one-degree-of-freedom (vertical) tests in free vibration for parameters governing vortex shedding induced vibration; and dynamic two-degree-of-freedom (along-wind and across-wind) tests in free vibration for parameters influencing the self-excited forces (flutter derivatives/rational functions). In Stage 2, finite element models of the test set-ups will be generated and validated with results from the tests. Additional models with different parameters will be created to conduct sensitivity analysis on the influence of different parameters. A conventional traffic signal will be chosen as the benchmark and another one will be equipped with the newly-designed signal lights on a roadway with similar attributes and similar loading. Both structures will be monitored and improvement in the performance of the new design will be demonstrated by measuring signal vibrations in addition to stresses experienced at the connections. The final report will include all data and test results along with specifications and guidelines for the new aerodynamic vibration mitigation technique as well as plans for its commercialization and implementation by state DOTs.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $136670
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-30, IDEA 201

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Jawed, Inam

  • Performing Organizations:

    Iowa State University

  • Principal Investigators:

    Alipour, Alice

  • Start Date: 20180814
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01677700
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-30, IDEA 201
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Aug 13 2018 3:03PM