Matthew Sleep of Oregon Tech uses ash from Mount Mazama as a natural pozzolan to improve the surfaces of unpaved trails.
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Research and Events
May 2020
Mount Mazama Ash Offers Sustainable Solution for ADA Accessibility on Unpaved Trails
Approximately 7,700 years ago Mount Mazama erupted, forming Crater Lake in Oregon. The resulting Mazama ash holds some properties that are similar to those in portland cement, which takes an excessive amount of energy to create. Matthew Sleep of Oregon Tech investigated whether Mazama ash could be used in place of portland cement as a natural pozzolan. Results indicate that it can—and unpaved trail surfaces made with Mazama ash are actually firmer and more durable than those made with portland cement alone. Such trails can provide a reliable surface for wheeled mobility devices.
Making Equity an Integral Part of Bike Share
Bike share systems have become relatively common in U.S. cities. Many of those systems have been making efforts to ensure that bike share is accessible to all residents, particularly those who have the fewest resources or have been historically underserved. Meanwhile, the mobility landscape in 2020 is changing rapidly. How can they document the outcomes of their equity programs so they may replicate success? Nathan McNeil, John MacArthur and Joseph Broach of Portland State University authored an article in the May 2020 issue of the ITE Journal detailing their recent research funded by Better Bike Share. The team is launching a set of ten technical briefs, funded by NITC, next month.
The Hidden Costs of Removing the Option to Pay for Transit With Cash?
Authored by Aaron Golub, Portland State University
With many transit agencies across the country eliminating cash handling for obvious health and virus transmission reasons, one may wonder: who will be negatively impacted by this? Some riders can still use cash at ticket vending machines or at certain retail outlets, but for many, depending on where they live and which parts of the transit system they ride, this will be inconvenient. National data show clear disparities in access to alternatives to cash, as well as the other tools needed to pay for things electronically. What these national data don't capture are the specific issues facing transit riders.
Summer Dissertation Fellowship Applications
Open to students currently enrolled in a transportation-related doctoral program at NITC partner campus, we offer Doctoral Dissertation Research Fellowships of up to $15,000 to cover expenses while working on a dissertation consistent with our research theme of improving the mobility of people and goods to build strong communities. Recently funded projects include: "Free Movement: Enhancing Open Data to Facilitate Independent Travel for Persons with Disabilities"; "Maternal Mental Health and Keetoowah Women: Access and Barriers to Mobility"; "Pedal the Old Pueblo: A Naturalistic Study on Bicycling in Tucson, AZ"; and many more projects.
Student Spotlight: Md. Mintu Miah, University of Texas at Arlington
Md Mintu is a Ph.D. student in transportation engineering at UTA Arlington with a focus on data mining and machine learning. As a research assistant on the NITC-funded project "Exploring Data Fusion Techniques to Derive Bicycle Volumes on a Network", he's already developed statistical models to predict the bicycle volume utilizing static variables (shared bike lane, speed limit, and percentage of white population), and weather-temporal variables (average temperature, humidity, precipitation, and weekend) where inductive loop detectors data have been used. Next is using emerging technological data from Strava to predict a better-performed model.

NITC Research and Partner Updates
NITC University Partners
The National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC), is a program of the Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) at Portland State University. NITC is one of seven U.S. Department of Transportation national university transportation centers. The NITC program is a Portland State-led partnership with the Oregon Institute of Technology, University of Arizona, University of Oregon, University of Texas at Arlington and University of Utah. We pursue our theme—improving mobility of people and goods to build strong communities—through research, education and technology transfer.
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