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CATT Lab Researchers Honored with Award

CATT Lab Researchers Honored with Award

During the recent Transportation Research Board (TRB) 87th Annual Meeting held January 13 – 17, 2008 researchers from the Center for Advanced Transportation Technology Laboratory were honored with the 2007 Charley V. Wootan Award.

Michael L. Pack, Phillip Weisberg, and Sujal Bista received this award for outstanding paper in the field of policy and organization, the paper titled, “Four Dimensional, Real-Time, Interactive Transportation System Visualization.” The paper described the development of a system for visualizing four-dimensional (the fourth dimension being time), “real-time” transportation data for the entire world. The four-dimensional, wide area traffic visualization tool provides incident management personnel, emergency management personnel, and the general public with the means to achieve situational awareness in as close to a real-world setting as possible. In its initial stages, only the road networks of Northern Virginia, the state of Maryland, and Washington, D.C, have been uploaded; however, since the system uses standard GIS data and relatively standard transportation databases to derive traffic measures, it can be scaled to incorporate other states, agencies, or countries.

Michael Pack serves as the Director of the CATT Lab. Prior to that, he was at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Center for Transportation Analysis and the University of Virginia’s Smart Travel Laboratory. Pack has extensive experience in the areas of intelligent transportation systems, data acquisition systems, database management systems, process control, and video image processing.

Phillip Weisberg is the acting lead software developer for research projects adopting traditional 3D video game methodologies at CATT Lab. He holds a B.S. degree in computer science from the University of Maryland. Weisberg is experienced in systems administration and open source project development for the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

Sujal Bista is the Visual Data Structures and Graphics Programmer for CATT Lab. He holds a B.S. degree in computer science from UMD and has more than five years of experience in computer graphics. Bista’s areas of expertise include visual data structures, operating system development, computer graphics, and network application development.

Researchers from University of Illinois, Chicago as well as from Wilbur Smith Associates also received this award. The Wootan award is conferred annually and was established in memory of Charley Wootan, who served as Director of the Texas Transportation Institute, Texas A&M University System, from 1976 until his retirement in 1993.

More than 10,000 policy makers, administrators, practitioners, researchers, and representatives of government, industry, and academic institutions attended the TRB 87th Annual Meeting, in Washington, DC. The meeting was held at the Marriott Wardman Park, Omni Shoreham, and Hilton Washington hotels and included more than 3,000 presentations in 600 sessions, 85 workshops, and 400 TRB committee meetings covering all aspects of transportation.

For more information about TRB visit their website at More information about CATT Lab and their research can be found at

January 23, 2008

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