Events / Meetings

NaTMEC: Validating and Leveraging Probe Data to Understand Travel Patterns and Identify Candidate Operations Projects

When: Wednesday, January 20, 2021 -- 2:00 - 3:30 PM ET

This webinar is being presented as part of a series partnership with the National Travel Monitoring Exposition and Conference, or NaTMEC. NaTMEC was created to provide travel monitoring professionals and transportation data users from around the world opportunities to share knowledge and good practices, exchange ideas, revisit fundamental concepts, learn new processes, procedures and techniques, and see the latest advancements in policy, technology, and equipment. In lieu of an in-person conference in 2020, NaTMEC is moving to a virtual format to be held June 21-25, 2021. Check natmec-dot-org for more information as it becomes available.

Webinar Description:

Understanding highway travel demand patterns are critical for transportation network analysis and planning. Traditionally, transportation professionals relied on questionnaire-based surveys to gather information on travel patterns. Through such stated preference surveys provide important information on general travel patterns, they inherently lack the ability to capture dynamic components of real-world travel behavior. Additionally, significant effort and resources required for these surveys often restrict the frequency or spatial coverage of their deployment. Probe vehicle-based data service providers leverage devices equipped with GPS to provide timestamped location information of travelers for broader coverage over time and space. This allows agencies to build trip details like origins and destinations, departure times, route and mode choices, and travel times, allowing opportunities to fundamentally change how we study travel behavior patterns.

The first presentation will demonstrate how a tool harnessing probe data can generate OD matrices, assess route usage, and analyze pass-through trips on a segment or region of interest. In the second presentation, the North Carolina Department of Transportation will show how they developed a method to systematically scan for and prioritize project sites for Spot Mobility improvements to reduce congestion and vehicular delay using speed and travel time data from HERE as well as other NCDOT data. The final presentation will introduce an innovative sensing technique (which could be used as a control data source to validate and verify probe vehicle data) that converts fiber optic cable into an intelligent sensor to provide accurate and timely traffic monitoring information along the monitored route. This presentation will introduce the technology, describe various applications of this technique, and compare its data to other alternative roadside sensor solutions.

Learning Objectives:
Attendees of this webinar will be able to:

  • Understand what vehicle-based probe data are and how it is collected
  • Recognize how probe data may be used through different case studies that analyze travel patterns or identify project sites to improve operations and mobility
  • Become familiar with distributed acoustic sensing solutions that convert spare capacity within roadside fiber optic cables into a distributed sensor capable of continuously monitoring traffic flow along the monitored route.


  • Rick Ayers, Public Sector Advocate | -University of Maryland CATT Laboratory
  • Richard J. (R.J.) Porter, PhD, PE, Highway Safety Engineer | VHB
  • Paul Cooper, Business Development Director, Transport Markets | OptaSense

No Charge to Register for the webinar

Registration for webinar includes a live web event and an archived recording with access for 30 days to each registrant and a webinar evaluation that provides a certificate of completion only. PDHs not included; please see PDH Credit Certificate section for more information on receiving PDHs.

PDH Credit Certificate -- 1.5 Credits: If you would like PDH Credit for this webinar, there is a processing fee for each registrant of $15 members/ $25 nonmembers to receive 1.5 PDH credits certificate. Instructions and links will be provided at the conclusion of the live webinar.

If you are a non-member of ITE you will need to create an account to register. You can create an account here.