Personal Vehicle Weather Station: crowd-sourced road weather
Brian Bell Exelis, Inc. Geospatial System- Environmental Intelligence Boulder, Colorado
The presentation will describe Exelis' approach and current state of an effort to produce a Personal Vehicle Weather Station (PVWS), as a reliable, low cost, smart sensor that is installed on vehicles to help fill weather observation gaps along transportation corridors and near critical infrastructure. With over 250 million passenger vehicles in the U.S., the potential of turning vehicles into moving weather stations to fill road weather observation gaps is alluring. As with any innovation, there are challenges that must be overcome to transform a fascinating concept into operational reality. Some of the key challenges that we addressed to create the PVWS solution, including both technical and non-technical, will be discussed. Taking our cue from the tens of thousands of Personal Weather Stations (PWS) and the Cooperative Observing Program, our approach seeks to encourage large-scale public participation to collect and disseminate weather observations, but instead of fixed stations, our approach relies on personal vehicles. The presentation will describe how current and emerging technological trends, including digital collaboration, machine-to-machine (M2M), the internet of things (IoT), sensory fusion, and crowd sourcing, were amalgamated to create our approach. Finding novel solutions and tackling challenges is nothing new to Exelis. The company offers half of a century of experience in providing solutions for the meteorological community. It was part of the original team working with NASA and NOAA that established the meteorological program in 1965. Ever since, Exelis has been supplying instruments to NOAA that provides vital information to the US weather service and meteorologists and scientists worldwide to track and predict weather and climate patterns which can be used to help save lives and property. The Exelis PVWS solution combines the company's domain expertise in meteorology, geospatial data, image science, analytics, and persistent surveillance with our partners' expertise in digital collaboration, machine-to-machine (M2M), the internet of things (IoT), sensory fusion, and crowd sourcing. The potent combination of these technologies and approaches has produced a low-cost, yet reliable PVWS and data platform that has the potential to provide real-time, relevant road weather information for those who travel along our nation's networks of roads and highways, as well as for those who manage and maintain roads and infrastructure.