May 25 – August 11, 2017

The Nebraska Transportation Center is hosting Santos Ramos this summer as part of the Mid-America Transportation Center Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. Santos is a senior civil engineering student from the University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) interested in transportation systems modeling and traffic analysis. As a MATC Summer REU Scholar, he will conduct research for eleven weeks under the guidance of NTC Director Dr. Laurence Rilett, Ph.D. student Ernest Tufuor, and Research Engineer Gabriela Perales. The MATC Summer REU program is a unique opportunity for Santos to gain research experience in the transportation field while becoming familiar with the UNL campus and facilities, where he hopes to return after graduation to continue his education in the master’s program. The REU program at UNL is an extension of MATC’s Summer Internship Program and sponsored by the University Transportation Center for Railway Safety.




May 15, 2017

MATC was pleased to welcome participants to the 2017 internship program during the orientation on May 15. The students selected for MATC’s Intern Program will gain professional experience in the transportation field under the mentorship of industry or university sponsors. The orientation was an opportunity for the interns to meet one another and receive advice on having a successful internship. Dr. John Sangster, UNL Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering, provided individual feedback on students’ resumes and their next steps in higher education or the profession based on their career interests and goals. UNL graduate student Sean Murphy shared his experience as a former MATC intern and encouraged the interns to ask their employers questions and emphasized the value of networking. At the close of the program, students will reflect on their internship experience in a written report and oral presentation given during the awards banquet on August 14.




April, 2017

NTC student Ernest Tufuor received one of three Commendation Awards from the College of Engineering Graduate Poster Competition at the 2017 UNL Spring Research Fair. Ernest, a PhD student in civil engineering, designed his poster presentation for a research project entitled, “In-Vehicle Evaluation of Milled Rumble Strips at Pre- and Post-Chip Sealed Maintenance Periods.” His experiment investigated the relationship between the depth of milled rumble strips and the noise and vibration in a vehicle cab. The research project was completed in collaboration with Dr. Laurence Rilett, NTC Director and Distinguished Professor of Civil Engineering, and Christopher LeFrois, NTC ITS Sr. Transportation Technology Engineer. Ernest received his award during the annual Engineering Graduate Student Recognition Event on April 28.




March 20, 2017

Dr. Shannon Bartelt-Hunt, Associate Professor of Civil Engineering at UNL, and her team of faculty recently received a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant of more than $300,000 to fund the expansion of their summer research program. The project titled, “REU Site: Sustainability of Horizontal Civil Networks in Rural Areas” focuses upon engaging students from outside UNL to participate in research about creating sustainable infrastructure in rural areas. Though the project has already completed a successful two-year pilot period, this grant will enable the program to expand to ten students per program for the next three years. During the ten-week session, students will conduct research under the supervision of a faculty mentor, while also participating in professional development seminars and workshops. Other faculty members involved in the project include Drs. Yong-Rak Kim, Joshua Steelman, Yusong Li, Xu Li, Daniel Linzell, John Sangster, and Elizabeth Jones.




March 10, 2017

Kyle Schneweis, Director of the Nebraska Department of Roads, and members of his team visited the Prem S. Paul Research Center at Whittier School for a meeting with Nebraska Transportation Center and Midwest Roadside Safety Facility faculty and staff. The event began with tours of NTC’s Intelligent Transportation Systems Laboratory and MwRSF’s Small-Scale Structures & Visualization Laboratories. Drs. Dan Linzell (Structures), Hamid Sharif-Kashani (Computer/Electrical), Ron Faller (Roadside Safety), Eric Thompson (Economics), Shannon Bartelt-Hunt (Environmental/Water Resources), Laurence Rilett (Transportation), and Yong Rak Kim (Geotechnical/Materials) presented on their current research, department facilities, and potential projects. Attendees had the opportunity to become further acquainted and discuss opportunities for collaboration between NDOR and NTC during the luncheon that followed.




April 2016

Paul Ivey Jr., an undergraduate Civil Engineering student, was selected as the 2016 recipient of the Tom Ogee, Sr. Memorial Scholarship. The $1,400 scholarship is awarded to a high-achieving Civil Engineering undergraduate student with a desire to pursue a career in the railroad industry following graduation from the University of Nebraska system. A native of Omaha, Nebraska, Paul has always dreamed of being part of a railroad executive team at Union Pacific Railroad, a goal he’s begun pursuing through his summer internship with them last year.




April 13, 2016

On Wednesday, April 13, UNL’s Midwest Roadside Safety Facility research and test site manager Jim Holloway along with project lead engineers Scott Rosenbaugh, Jennifer Schmidt, Ronald Faller, and team performed a crash test with a 36,000-kg tractor-trailer vehicle for a group of over 50 attendees. The test was designed to evaluate the capacity and ability of Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation’s (MIT) Narrow Single-Slope Bridge Rail to contain and redirect the heavy, tractor-trailer. The vehicle impacted the barrier at approximately 50 mph and a 15-degree angle and was successfully redirected with minimal damage to the system, meaning that the new barrier is a good candidate to replace aging barriers across Canada. In addition to MIT sponsors, this rare event drew interest from Governor Pete Ricketts; NDOR Director Kyle Schneweis and representatives Khalil Jaber, Miki Esposito, Mark Traynowicz, and Phil TenHulzen; Nebraska FHWA representatives; and law enforcement officers from Lincoln, Omaha, and the State Patrol.




October 4-7, 2015

This year, nine NTC students attended the 2015 American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA) conference. The conference, which took place at the Minneapolis Convention Center, MN, brought together students, faculty, researchers, and industry leaders from around the country to present research, introduce the newest technology, and network. The students found the exhibits and the opportunities to speak to railroad professionals to be informative and insightful because of close connections to their own research.




August 13, 2015

The Nebraska Transportation Center had the honor of hosting US Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx and Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer for a roundtable discussion, which drew over thirty leaders from Nebraska's public and private sector and educational institutions and took place in NTC's Intelligent Transportation Systems Lab at the Whittier Research Center. The roundtable discussion marked the opportunity for Nebraska's transportation industry's leaders to share their future plans and concerns with the Secretary and Senator. Topics discussed include driverless vehicles, state and federal funding for infrastructure repair and upkeep, laws relating to private drone use, EPA regulations, road safety, and the best way to communicate the state's needs to Washington.




September 13-17, 2015

Gabriela Perales, a graduate research assistant at NTC, recently presented her research, "Analysis of Empirical Side Friction Factors on Circular Horizontal Curves near Highway-Railway Grade Crossings," at the annual International Highway Engineering Exchange Program (IHEEP) Conference in Pittsburgh, PA. Given the exceptional quality of her work, Perales' presentation won in Area III of the Education Scholarship Presentations (ESP) Program competition and will advance to the International IHEEP Conference ESP Competition. The ESP program is intended to introduce young engineers who are training in transportation-related disciplines to IHEEP and potential DOT or sponsor employers.




May 18 – August 7, 2015

Seventeen bright and eager undergrads made up the 2015 Mid-America Transportation Center Summer Internship Program, working with ten different private and public sponsors over the summer to learn about the transportation field, get hands-on experience, and network with industry leaders and fellow peers. As part of the program, students conducted their own research, visited Olsson Associates, the City of Lincoln, the City of Omaha Traffic Signal Shop, and presented on their work experience at the end of the summer. MATC is proud to say that over 330 students have been impacted by the internship program since its inception in 1997.




January 20th, 2015

NTC Director, Laurence Rilett, MwRSF Director, Dr. Ronald Faller and Post-Doctoral Associate, Dr. Cody Stolle are featured in the 2013-2014 UNL Research Report. You can read all about their project here: Follow The Nebraska Transportation Center on Facebook to stay up to date with all current news items:




September 8th, 2014

Dr. Aemal Khattak, Associate Professor and affiliated Nebraska Transportation Center faculty member, was appointed as the Area Editor for the Journal of Transportation Safety and Security (JTSS) by the Journal’s Editor-in-Chief, Dr. Stephen Richards. The Area Editor serves as the main contact point for authors when they submit manuscripts for publication in a particular area and plays a very visible role in the editorial process of peer-reviewed journal publications. JTSS is an initiative of the Southeastern Transportation Center, the University of Tennessee, Beijing Jiaotong University, and publishers Taylor and Francis LLC. The goal of the journal is to meet the needs of both academicians and practitioners who perform research and work in the related areas of transportation safety and security.




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April 24th, 2014

NTC Director, Dr. Laurence Rilett is featured in UNL Today in conjunction with his research project titled: Traffic Calming Elements for Entry Control Facility Threat Delay and Containment. Dr. Rilett and his project are both included in the National Strategic Research Institute's first annual report.





April 15th, 2014

The Nebraska Transportation Center has received $13,046 in funding from State Farm for the Roads, Rails and Race Cars Afterschool Program. You can read more about the award in this article from the UNL Newsroom.