The U.S. Department of Transportation Seeks Information on Automated Vehicle Technology

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is seeking informed views on the opportunities from and challenges to the development, deployment, operation, and use of increased automation of the surface transportation system, including vehicles, drivers, users, road-based infrastructure, information systems, and applications. The goal for this Request for Information (RFI) is to develop a USDOT multimodal research plan for automation.

This area is of great interest to the public because the technology may have a significant impact on many societal issues such as driving safety, personal mobility, energy consumption, operating efficiency, environmental impact, and land use. The RFI’s focus is on learning the views of government, industry, academia, and the American public with regard to:

  • Roles of local, state, and federal governments in policy formation
  • Technical challenges
  • Human factors issues
  • Institutional issues
  • Legal issues associated with increased automation.

Input to this RFI will assist the USDOT to:

  • Identify, categorize, and prioritize key research challenges
  • Identify and begin quantifying anticipated societal costs and benefits
  • Learn about current and planned research activities among private and public research groups
  • Gain insight into commercial trends and market developments
  • Understand potential opportunities for public-private partnerships and financing
  • Organize the USDOT research plan temporally, according to near-, mid-, and long-term priorities that reflect the time-sensitive aspects of evolving automation capabilities and market demands
  • Identify appropriate areas for policy formation that can help to accelerate beneficial developments, reduce or eliminate public exposure to risk, and reduce the development and operational costs associated with automation.

The RFI can be found on FedBizOps and here:

Responses are due by 12:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time on April 23, 2013, and shall be sent electronically to the Contracting Specialist, Michael Rigby, at