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Auburn University Transportation Research Institute shines at 2023 TRB Meeting

By Jeremy Henderson

Published: Feb 9, 2023 4:14:00 PM

The 102 annual Transportation Research Board (TRB) conference held Jan. 8-12 in Washington, D.C. The 102 annual Transportation Research Board (TRB) conference held Jan. 8-12 in Washington, D.C.

Auburn University's leading and broad transportation research, education and technology transfer portfolio was once again front and center at the 102 annual Transportation Research Board (TRB) conference held Jan. 8-12 in Washington, D.C. 

The TRB Meeting, the largest and most important transportation conference in the country, is an annual destination for the nation's top transportation professionals. This year, noted attendees included Jennifer Homendy, Chair of the National Transportation Safety Board, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, and U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm.

"TRB draws transportation researchers and practitioners from every discipline and from around the world to discuss the industry's most pressing issues. AUTRI faculty and staff have an important and impactful role as evidenced by the fact that this year they participated in more than 45 presentations, " said AUTRI director Larry Rilett, who himself delivered a presentation on a two-way lane closure case study estimating work zone environmental emissions via microsimulation. "That Auburn has had such a significant, sustained presence at the TRB conference should be a huge point of pride for our university."

AUTRI received the Council of University Transportation Center‘s (CUTC) 2022 Technology Transfer Leadership Award at the CUTC Annual Awards Banquet held in conjunction with the TRB Meeting. The honor was for work done as part of a five-year, $5 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Several Auburn students also presented at the conference; 18 members of the Auburn University student chapter of the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) delivered 19 podium and post presentations covering topics such as highway geometric design, traffic control devices, traffic simulation and safety analysis.

An Auburn team placed second in the meeting's Traffic Control Device Student Challenge for innovative improvements to the standard RRFB (Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon) design, which aimed to improve pedestrian safety.

"In terms of innovative transportation research, education and technology transfer initiatives, the work we do at AUTRI has been on the map for decades," Rilett said. "That both our faculty and students regularly have a significant presence at TRB isn't surprising.” 

A full list of Auburn participants, as well as details related to their presentations can be downloaded here.

Media Contact: Jeremy Henderson,, 334-844-3591

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