Dana's article looked at existing modeling methods for their ability to calculate the noise reduction of short barriers. These barriers are commonly constructed along highways for safety reasons. However, their noise reduction potential requires the identification of noise modeling techniques to ensure that such models can accurately predict noise reduction in the surrounding community.
The article documents the findings of Dana's research, which were also presented at the 2022 TRB Annual Meeting. These findings include the observation that shorter sound walls (3 to 6 feet in height) may be an option to reduce noise in surrounding communities in cases where taller sound walls are considered cost-prohibitive under current FHWA policy.
RSG Director Dana Lodico, PE, INCE Bd. Cert. authored an article on product noise rating (PNR) that was recently published in the National Council of Acoustical Consultants (NCAC) Newsletter.
PNR has been in development for nearly two decades. It would allow consumers to quickly and easily assess a product's sound (or lack thereof). The work on a PNR system started with volunteers for the Institute of Noise Control Engineering (INCE-USA).
The PNR system developed through INCE-USA's work is ready. However, lack of funding has constrained deployment to date.
The Zephyr Foundation has given RSG Principal Johanna Zmud, PhD, its Outstanding Industry Contributor Award. This annual award recognizes an individual who selflessly contributes to the travel demand modeling industry through their work.
Johanna has been at the forefront of applying survey science to the gathering of data on past, current, and future travel behavior to understand important phenomena, such as transportation mode choice, and to ascertain developing trends, such as propensity to use automated vehicles. Her recent research has examined how technology-enabled mobility impacts society. She has also researched the implications for transportation providers and agencies.
Zephyr Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization. Its mission is to advance rigorous transportation and land-use decision-making for the public good. It does this by advocating for and supporting improved travel analysis and facilitating its implementation.
RSG Principal Ken Kaliski and Senior Analyst Ryan Haac both coauthored a peer-reviewed paper, titled “In the shadow of wind energy: Predicting community exposure and annoyance to wind turbine shadow flicker in the United States,” which was published in the Energy Research & Social Science journal. The paper is also the subject of a webinar on March 11, 2022, at 3:00 p.m. ET (12:00 p.m. PT). The webinar is free and open to the public.
Ken and Ryan worked with their paper's coauthors from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Vermont Environmental Research Associates, Inc. to model shadow flicker (SF) exposure. SF is the effect of sunlight passing through moving wind turbine blades, which can lead to annoyance among those exposed.
The team modeled shadow flicker exposure at nearly 35,000 US residences across 61 wind projects and surveyed 747 people. The results shed light on what contributed to perceived shadow flicker and annoyance. The team did not find a significant correlation between shadow flicker annoyance and exposure. Instead, the team's model identified a greater correlation with other factors among respondents. These included a person's level of education, age, perception of how wind turbines look, and annoyance at other human-caused sounds.
Research of this nature is increasingly important as the renewable energy market expands. By 2035, the installed capacity of wind energy in the United States will be 600 gigawatts (GW), up from 110 GW now. This will require thousands of new wind projects. To understand how those projects will affect nearby communities, additional research like that undertaken by RSGers for this paper will be necessary to better understand wind turbine shadow flicker exposure.
RSG is a certified Small, Women-owned, and Minority (SWaM) firm in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The certification was granted on February 2, 2022, by the Virginia Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity.
RSG is eager to continue to offer our innovative consulting services and expertise to entities in Virginia through this important program. Through the SWaM program, RSG is authorized to provide traffic and transportation consulting services as a small business.
The Commonwealth of Virginia defines a “small business” as one that is at least 51% independently owned and controlled by one or more individuals who are US citizens or legal resident aliens, and together with affiliates, has 250 or fewer employees, or average annual gross receipts of $10 million or less averaged over the previous three years. Additional information about RSG's certification is available in the SWaM directory.
RSG SWaM Certification Number: 682999
Small Start Date: 02-02-2022
SWaM Expiration Date: 02-02-2027
NIGP Description and Code: Traffic Consulting (91894) & Transportation Consulting (91896)
The Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS) at the University of California, Berkeley named RSG Principal Johanna Zmud, PhD, as an ITS Senior Fellow for 2022. Johanna is one of only five Senior Fellows selected this year. The award recognizes her extraordinary contributions and dedication to the transportation field.
As a Principal at RSG, Johanna supports clients' needs around transportation technology and emerging mobility. She has cofounded several firms and worked in both the public and private sectors on travel behavior and transportation research.
As an ITS Senior Fellow, Johanna will continue her important work at RSG while shaping the industry conversation. Senior Fellows can collaborate with ITS faculty, staff, and students to improve transportation education, research, and practice.
Jim Brogan, PMP, joins RSG as a Vice President and brings over 25 years of experience in multimodal planning, operations, strategic planning, transit planning, and investment support at the national, state, and local levels.
Jim has helped state DOTs, MPOs, ports, railroads, transit agencies, and regional coalitions across the country more effectively identify and address multimodal issues within their planning and investment activities.
Jim's strategic mindset and emphasis on improving outcomes will empower RSG to continue to deliver unparalleled transportation and mobility insights to clients in both new and established markets.