Smart Work Zone System


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Safe-D National UTC


In the previous Safe-D project 04-104, a prototype wearable Personal Protective Equipment vest that accurately localizes, monitors, and predicts potential collisions between work zone (WZ) workers and passing motorists was developed and demonstrated. The system also notifies the worker when they’re about to depart geo-fenced safe areas within WZs. While the design supported a successful functional demonstration, additional design iteration was required to simplify, ruggedize, and reduce per unit costs to increase the likelihood of broader adoption. In addition, two new useful components were identified that support a more effective deployment package. One of these components is a Base Station that provides an edge computing environment for alert algorithm processing, consolidates communications of individual worker positions via a 4G link to a cloud computing environment, and can be coupled with a local roadside unit to support the broadcast of WZ information to connected and automated vehicles. The second component is a Smart Cone device that was added to help automatically define safe area boundaries and improve communications reliability between workers and the Base Station. This entire package was developed to support a broader scale deployment of the technology by the Virginia Department of Transportation.



Smart Vest, Smart Cone, worker safety, work zone safety, C-V2X, connected vehicles