Transportation and Infrastructure Systems Engineering

As a branch of civil engineering, transportation engineering has a history that is long and illustrious and a future that is full of promise. The National Academy of Engineering has identified restoring urban infrastructure and implementing smart mobility as grand challenges. We need coordinated approaches to tackle transportation issues by integrating car, rail, bus, truck, walking and bicycling to meet sustainability goals. Currently, we see how smartphones have enabled ride sharing services such as Uber and Lyft, while taxis and GPS-equipped cars and trucks are providing massive amounts of data that was unimaginable a few years back. Before long, it may be common to have vehicles are talking to infrastructure (V2I) and vehicles talking to each other (V2V). Traffic flow with automated vehicles is expected to be much safer and more efficient than with human drivers.

The journey to that future will be fascinating and challenging. The safe and efficient movement of people and goods relies on infrastructure. Highways, airports, railroads, waterways and pipelines need to be planned, designed, operated, and maintained. Purdue's Transportation and Infrastructure Systems Engineering faculty offer a wide range of classes, research facilities, and experiences. Their efforts will have noticeable impacts on challenges such as:

  • Asset management
  • Data acquisition and analytics
  • Emergency response
  • Energy
  • Freight Transportation and Logistics
  • Environment
  • Smart Mobility
  • Sustainability
  • Urban infrastructure

The award-winning Purdue Student Chapter of the Institute of Transportation Engineers introduces students to the transportation profession and fosters a close association of students with practicing engineers, educators from other institutions, and local and national chapters of ITE.


August 22, 2019

Celebrate 60: Technology transportation program marks milestone of advancing safer drives

Transportation incidents like poor bridge or highway performance often leave drivers wondering if their local roads and bridges are adequate. A nationwide effort that began in Indiana and New York – and is now celebrating its 60th anniversary – aims to ensure the safety of local drivers. The Indiana Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP) helps street departments, county highway departments and local elected officials to better meet the needs of the public by acting as a resource for training, technical assistance and technology transfer.
July 24, 2019

Samuel Labi delivers keynote lecture at International Conference on Smart Cities

Samuel Labi, Professor of Civil Engineering and Associate Director of the Center for Connected and Automated Transportation (CCAT), delivered a keynote lecture titled, "Preparing Our Infrastructure for Connected and Autonomous Vehicle Operations: Challenges and Opportunities," at the 2019 International Conference on Smart Cities in Seoul, Korea on July 17, 2019.
July 11, 2019

Civil engineering professor to testify today at congressional hearing

Darcy Bullock, the Lyles Family Professor of Civil Engineering and director of the Joint Transportation Research Program at Purdue, will testify at 2 p.m. today (July 11) before the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology's Subcommittee on Research and Technology.
April 22, 2019

Satish Ukkusuri keynote speaker at The Smart Conference

Satish Ukkusuri, Professor of Civil Engineering, will be a keynote speaker at the 1st International Conference on Smart Tourism, Smart Cities and Enabling Technologies, referred to as The Smart Conference, May 1-3 at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.
April 3, 2019

Discovery Park to host Connected and Autonomous Vehicle Transportation workshop

Purdue’s Discovery Park, in partnership with the Joint Transportation Research Program, the Purdue Policy Research Institute, and the Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security, is hosting a Connected and Autonomous Transportation Vehicle (CATV) workshop for Purdue faculty and research staff. The free event will take place 1-5 p.m. April 24 in the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, Room 121.
March 27, 2019

Meg Hunter awarded 2019 WTS Greater Indianapolis Chapter Scholarship

Meg Hunter, undergraduate student at the Lyles School of Civil Engineering, has been awarded the 2019 Women's Transportation Seminar (WTS) Greater Indianapolis Chapter Scholarship. The scholarship was established to recognize an undergraduate female in the transportation industry.
March 20, 2019

Ghahari, Hunter receive Edward J. Cox Memorial Transportation Scholarship Award

Lyles School of Civil Engineering graduate student Seyed Ali Ghahari and undergraduate student Margaret Hunter have been named recipients of the 2019 Edward J. Cox Memorial Transportation Scholarship Awards. The award is presented annually by the Indiana Section of the Institute of Transportation Engineers.
March 6, 2019

Tariq Saeed receives Purdue Engineering Outstanding Research Award

Congratulations to Tariq U. Saeed, recipient of the 2019 College of Engineering Outstanding Research Award. The award recognizes excellence in graduate student research from across the College of Engineering. Tariq will be recognized at the Spring Graduate Student Awards luncheon through a certificate and a $2000 award.
January 31, 2019

105th Purdue Road School Transportation Conference and Expo

The 105th Purdue Road School will be held March 4-7 on the Purdue University campus. This is a great Indiana tradition that brings together federal, state and local agencies, industry, consulting and academia to collaborate and reflect on diverse transportation topics. Over 3,000 attendees will have the opportunity to hear Opening Session and Luncheon keynote addresses from leaders in the transportation field, choose from nearly 200 hours of technical sessions, visit a variety of exhibitors, and network with their peers.
January 16, 2019

Drones shown to make traffic crash site assessments safer, faster and more accurate

Idling in a long highway line of slowed or stopped traffic on a busy highway can be more than an inconvenience for drivers and highway safety officers. It is one of the most vulnerable times for "secondary accidents," which often can be worse than an original source of the slowdown, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration. In fact, secondary crashes go up by a factor of almost 24 during the time that highway safety officials are assessing and documenting the crash site.
December 14, 2018

Soybean oil driving Purdue technology to improve roadways

Holiday drivers who find that roadwork is driving them crazy may find in future years that a Purdue University-affiliated startup can seal the deal for a merrier journey. Environmental Concrete Products is a startup based on a Purdue innovation, with funding for the Indiana Soybean Alliance, which uses engineering sealant technology to protect and prolong the life of new and existing concrete to make a smoother ride for travelers and save costs for road upkeep and repairs.
October 23, 2018

E-scooters at Purdue are sweet as jelly

In the coming weeks, 40 scooters will be distributed across Purdue's campus to begin a four-week research project on best practices for using e-scooters. The research project, called Jelly, is being led by Darcy Bullock, Purdue's Lyles Family Professor of Civil Engineering and director of the Joint Transportation Research Program, which is operated out of Purdue's Discovery Park.
October 19, 2018

Purdue Civil Engineering study influences Indiana infrastructure funding

A study completed in 2017 by the Lyles School of Civil Engineering was used by the Indiana General Assembly to realign the highway taxation structure that addressed the growing transportation-funding needs. The study concluded that the existing (at that time) fuel tax was inadequate to ensure that the state's roadways were maintained properly. According to the report, federal and most state fuel tax rates have not changed for many years. That and the increased fuel efficiency of modern cars has created a serious funding gap that is rapidly growing.
October 18, 2018

Roads that charge electric cars

Electric cars that charge while driving? Purdue civil engineers want to make that leap. Konstantina "Nadia" Gkritza, Associate Professor in the Lyles School of Civil Engineering, studies the practicality of a roadway where electric-powered vehicles are recharged as they drive along it.
August 17, 2018

Professors Jon Fricker, Samuel Labi receive D. Grant Mickle Award

Congratulations to Professors Jon Fricker and Samuel Labi for receiving the 2018 D. Grant Mickle Award from the Transportation Research Board. The award was given for their paper titled, "Bundling Bridge and Other Highway Projects: Patterns and Policies."
July 25, 2018

New data collection technology may help small airports improve operations counts, increase FAA funding

A Purdue University-developed product called Blueavion f1, launched Monday (July 23) by Bluemac Analytics Inc. is shown to help airports more accurately log airport operations. The technology, developed by Darcy Bullock, the Lyles Family Professor of Civil Engineering and director of the Joint Transportation Research Program, and John Mott, associate professor in the Purdue Polytechnic Institute School of Aviation and Transportation Technology, features a transponder data collection system that provides a more accurate method to determine the number of operations an airport has in a given time.
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