NSRI, UNL to improve safety of nationwide vehicle entryways via funding from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

November 13, 2015

The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has awarded the National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) at the University of Nebraska a contract for research to aid in updating safety guidelines for controlled vehicle entryways throughout the Department of Defense (DoD) that are focused on threat containment while routing traffic through entry corridors.

Dr. Laurence R. Rilett, Keith W. Klaasmeyer Chair and Distinguished Professor of Civil Engineering at UNL will serve as principal investigator and Drs. Cody Stolle, Elizabeth Jones, John Reid and Ron Faller will serve as Co-Principal Investigators.  Dr. Rilett serves as the Director of the Mid-America Transportation Center and the Nebraska Transportation Center, which is the umbrella organization for all transportation research at the University of Nebraska.

Rilett states that “Vehicle fleets today are more advanced and recent research indicates that there is a need to update design standards in vehicle entry control points to reflect the latest vehicle developments.  Safety guidelines need to reflect more accurate design parameters for entryways, as prior guidelines were based on historical vehicle performance.  Our faculty and staff at the Nebraska Transportation Center’s Midwest Roadside Safety Facility and Transportation Systems Research Group are well positioned to provide the expertise that the USACE requests.”

The goal of this research project is to determine the practical tire-ground friction measurements for use in the Corps’ entry control point design guidelines.  This will in turn result in more accurate threat vehicle travel time calculations.  This research will help to develop policies and practices to increase the amount of reaction time available to ensure a threat vehicle does not enter an installation perimeter. NSRI Executive Director Bob Hinson, Lt Gen, USAF (ret) added that “improving road design and traffic control devices at military bases not only will increase efficiency but also will have a positive impact on the safety of our military personnel.  The results of this contract will enhance the USACE ability to determine the latest breaking solutions to protect and defend our controlled entry facilities, nationwide.”

NSRI, a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), located at the University of Nebraska, is one of 13 established UARC’s across the nation, delivering relevant and timely research solutions directly impacting DoD operations and national security. 

About NSRI
Founded in 2012, the National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) at the University of Nebraska is the only University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) in the country dedicated to delivering solutions for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) to U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) and across other federal agencies. NSRI provides research and development for the U.S. Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, and other governmental agencies in multiple mission-critical competency areas — including development of medical countermeasures to WMD; nuclear detection and forensics; consequence management; chemical and biological weapons detection; and space, cyber, and telecom law. Learn more at nsri.nebraska.edu.