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Discretionary Cooperative Agreement To Foster the Development, Evaluation, and Deployment of a Heavy Vehicle Intelligent Dynamic Stability Enhancement System(s)

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government

Discretionary Cooperative Agreement To Foster the Development, Evaluation, and Deployment of a Heavy Vehicle Intelligent Dynamic Stability Enhancement System(s)

W.A. Walsh and George L. Parker
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Federal Register
August 8, 1994

[Federal Register: August 8, 1994]


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Discretionary Cooperative Agreement To Foster the Development, 
Evaluation, and Deployment of a Heavy Vehicle Intelligent Dynamic 
Stability Enhancement System(s)

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: NHTSA announces this discretionary cooperative agreement 
program to foster the development, evaluation, and deployment of a 
heavy vehicle intelligent dynamic stability enhancement system(s) and 
solicits application for projects under this program.

DATES: Applications must be received on or before September 19, 1994.

ADDRESSES: Applications must be submitted to the National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration, Office of Contracts and Procurement 
(NAD-30), ATTN: Janice Tyson, 400 Seventh Street, SW., room 5301, 
Washington, DC 20590. All applications submitted must include a 
reference to NHTSA Cooperative Agreement Program No. DTNH22-95-R-07002. 
Interested applicants are advised that no separate application package 
exists beyond the contents of this announcement.

Janice Tyson, Office of Contracts and Procurement, (202) 366-9562, for 
general administrative questions; and Jeffrey M. Woods, Office of Crash 
Avoidance Research (NRD-53), (202) 366-6826, for programmatic 
questions; at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 
Seventh Street, SW., Room 6220, Washington, DC 20590.


Background and Objectives

    NHTSA has the responsibility to devise strategies to reduce the 
number of motor vehicle collisions and to save lives and reduce 
injuries and property damage through the prevention and reduction in 
severity of motor vehicle collisions. NHTSA's Office of Crash Avoidance 
Research conducts and manages research intended to: Analyze driver-
vehicle interaction, identify specific vehicle designs, components, or 
parameters associated with driver performance errors and resulting 
collisions, and develop and evaluate vehicle-based collision avoidance 
countermeasure concepts and devices.
    Rollovers are the principal manifestation of the limited vehicle 
dynamics/handling capabilities of heavy trucks. Understeer, high speed 
offtracking, and transient rearward amplification are other traits 
which are more difficult to directly link to crashes, but which, 
nevertheless, are likely to be causal factors in some number of 
    The frequent occurrence of rollover in heavy vehicle accidents has 
been well documented. For example, rollover was found to occur in 55 
percent of the crashes for a sample of 186 fatal heavy truck crashes 
investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board. State 
accident data from Maryland and Pennsylvania, for 1988-90, show that 
rollover occurred in 9 percent of all medium/heavy truck crashes. 
Seventy-one (71) percent of the crashes involving rollover resulted in 
injuries or fatalities to truck or other vehicle occupants, compared 
with 52 percent injuries/fatalities for non-rollover crashes. The 
occurrence of rollover in heavy truck crashes increases the likelihood 
of injury or fatality. While the annual number of truck occupant 
fatalities has been decreasing, primarily due to increased seat belt 
usage, rollover continues to be a major factor in injury- or fatality-
producing truck crashes.
    Over the past 15-20 years, both industry (the former Motor Vehicle 
Manufacturers Association) and the federal government (NHTSA, FHWA, 
U.S. Army Tank Automotive Command) have provided extensive support to a 
number of academic institutions to develop a wide array of mathematical 
models which predict vehicle dynamic responses and stability limits as 
a function of physical attributes of the vehicle and the conditions 
under which the vehicle is operated. These models can be applied in 
cases involving either braking or steering maneuvers or combined 
braking and steering maneuvers. To date, the primary uses of these 
models have been to perform post-accident vehicle trajectory/dynamic 
stability analyses, to evaluate the dynamic stability performance 
implications of various design options during new vehicle or component 
product development efforts, and to consider the vehicle performance 
ramifications of various alternative vehicle weights and dimensions 
public policy alternatives.
    The advent of lower cost sensors and processors offers the 
potential to utilize existing modeling/predictive capability in a new, 
real-time application; namely, on-board sensing and response to 
incipient dynamic instability conditions. These conditions are created 
by a combination of fixed vehicle attributes, driving maneuvers, 
vehicle loading conditions, and highway conditions.
    The purpose of this research project is to develop a vehicle-based 
intelligent dynamic stability enhancement system which senses a number 
of key vehicle variables, processes that information in real-time, and 
uses inferred properties of the roadway and stored data describing the 
fixed vehicle physical attributes in an algorithm which ultimately 
activates a warning, directs or prompts control actions, or initiates 
control actions. Thus, the system determines the likelihood of an 
unstable condition at any instant and takes appropriate actions, such 
as warnings, control prompts, or partial or full executions of control 
inputs or maneuvers, that can be recognized and successfully executed 
in time to restabilize the vehicle. The system ``intelligence'' is used 
to determine the vehicle loading condition, including any peculiar 
characteristics of the cargo, during vehicle operation. System 
performance would be judged by the amount of advance warning provided 
or by the reaction time of the control system, as well as its 
characteristic false alarm rate. The goal of this project is to build 
on the existing research and develop working prototype systems to 
demonstrate the state-of-the-art in sensor/actuator technology and 
control algorithms.
    NHTSA believes that a teaming approach may be necessary to conduct 
this research. A consortium of organizations with expertise in vehicle 
dynamics modeling, vehicle manufacturing (i.e., tractor or trailer 
manufacturers), suspension system manufacturing, closed loop control 
system development, vehicle testing and evaluation, and motor carriers 
(in the case of an in-service demonstration project) appears ideally 
suited to pursue this program.
    Because of the potential for cost sharing, the performing 
organization(s) may retain the rights to any proprietary product or 
technology developed under the agreement, subject to a government use 
license. The organization would be free to pursue commercial 
development and marketing for the products. NHTSA will require 
deliverables, however, which could include reports suitable for 
publishing in the public domain to document such items as the research 
methods and system evaluation results. Certain proprietary information, 
such as algorithms, need not be released in the public domain.
    It is anticipated that one or more cooperative agreements may be 
awarded under this program. Projects will be funded incrementally, with 
up to a three-year support period. The maximum funding level 
anticipated for the entire program is $650,000, excluding any cost 
sharing provided by the performing organization(s). The maximum 
incremental funding available in any one year is anticipated to be 

NHTSA Involvement

    The NHTSA, Office of Crash Avoidance Research, will be involved in 
all activities undertaken as part of this cooperative agreement program 
and will:
    1. Provide, on an as-available basis, one professional staff 
person, to be designated as the Contracting Officer's Technical 
Representative (COTR), to participate in the planning and management of 
the cooperative agreement, and to coordinate activities between the 
organization and NHTSA;
    2. Make available information and technical assistance from 
government sources, within available resources and as determined 
appropriate by the COTR. This shall include data from state and 
national accident databases, human factors data, or any other resources 
within the government that may be of use in supporting research 
    3. Provide liaison with other government agencies and organizations 
as appropriate; and
    4. Help expand the knowledge base of collision avoidance systems 
and enabling technologies by publishing nonproprietary information 
developed at Government expense in the scientific literature, thus 
making it available to all organizations involved in research and 
product development in this area.

Period of Support

    The research and development effort described in this notice may be 
supported through the award of a cooperative agreement. NHTSA reserves 
the right to make multiple cooperative agreement awards for the effort 
described in this notice depending on the merits of the applications 
received and the amount of Federal funding available.
    Contingent on the availability of funds and satisfactory 
performance, cooperative agreement(s) will be awarded to eligible 
organization(s) for project periods of up to three years.

Eligibility Requirements

    To be eligible to participate in this cooperative agreement 
program, an applicant must be a for-profit business organization (small 
or large), a non-profit organization, or an educational institution. 
Regardless of the type of organization applying for Federal funding 
assistance, no fee or profit will be allowed. While the proposed 
research effort may require extensive collaboration among several 
organizations, it is envisioned that during the pre-application 
process, these various organizations will designate one organization to 
prepare and submit the formal application.

Application Procedure

    Each applicant must submit one original and two copies of its 
application package to: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 
Office of Contracts and Procurement (NAD-30), ATTN: Janice Tyson, 400 
Seventh Street, SW., Room 5301, Washington, DC 20590. Only complete 
application packages received on or before September 19, 1994 shall be 
considered. Submission of three additional copies will expedite 
processing, but is not required. The applicant shall specifically 
identify any information in the application which is to be treated as 
proprietary, in accordance with the procedures of 49 CFR Part 512, 
Confidential Business Information.

Application Contents

    1. The application package must be submitted with OMB Standard Form 
424 (Rev. 4-88, including 424A and 424B), with the required information 
filled in and the certified assurances included. While the Form 424-A 
deals with budget information, and Section B identifies budget 
categories, the available space does not permit a level of detail which 
is sufficient for a meaningful evaluation of proposed costs. A 
supplemental sheet should be provided which presents a detailed 
breakdown of the proposed costs, as well as the costs which the 
applicant proposes to contribute in support of this effort, or any 
additional financial commitment made by other sources. The budget 
detail shall include all cost components of the project. Labor 
categories, hourly labor rates, and projected labor hours for each 
category should be included, as well as all materials, computer time, 
test facility fees, etc. For planning purposes, the required briefings 
during the agreement performance period will be conducted at NHTSA in 
Washington, DC.
    2. Applicants shall include a program narrative statement which 
includes the following:
    a. A statement of work describing the development of the prototype 
heavy vehicle dynamic stability enhancement system. All phases of the 
system development should be described in sufficient detail to 
demonstrate technical and administrative proficiency in each area of 
the project (e.g., vehicle dynamics modelling, assessing system 
performance, obtaining test vehicles, assembling the system hardware, 
etc.). Specific details on product development should be included; for 
example, a system requiring sensors should include information on 
whether those sensors are off-the-shelf or are to be developed as part 
of the research effort.
    b. The proposed program director and other key personnel identified 
for participation in the proposed research effort, including a 
description of the project team and individual qualifications and their 
respective organizational responsibilities.
    c. A description of the test facilities and equipment currently 
available or to be obtained for use in conducting the proposed research 
    d. A description of the applicant's previous experience or on-going 
research programs that are related to this proposed research effort.
    e. A detailed schedule and management plan for the proposed 
research effort, to include:
    1. A detailed task schedule, Gantt, or PERT chart to show the 
duration, relationship and sequencing of proposed tasks, sub tasks, 
project milestones, and project deliverables.
    2. A management plan that reflects the capability to direct and 
coordinate the project tasks and administrative activities among the 
team member organizations.
    f. A description of deliverables that will be provided to NHTSA 
during the project and upon completion of the research effort. This 
could include written reports, video tapes of computer simulations and/
or full-scale vehicle tests, test data, etc. Each deliverable should be 
identified as to whether it will be proprietary information or suitable 
for release in the public domain.
    g. A detailed statement of any technical assistance which the 
applicant may require of NHTSA in order to successfully complete the 
proposed research effort.

Application Review Process and Criteria

    Initially, all applications will be reviewed to confirm that the 
applicant is an eligible recipient and to ensure that the application 
contains all the information require by the Application Contents 
section of this notice.
    Each complete application from an eligible recipient will then be 
evaluated by a Technical Evaluation Committee. The applications will be 
evaluated using the following criteria:
    1. The technical merit of the proposal, including the applicant's 
understanding of the purpose and unique problems represented by the 
research objectives of this cooperative agreement program as evidenced 
in the description of their proposed project. The impact the proposed 
research effort will have on fostering development of commercially 
viable dynamic stability enhancement systems for heavy vehicles will be 
evaluated. The technical merit of the proposed research effort, 
including the feasibility of approach, practicality, planned 
methodology, and anticipated results, will have the most weight of all 
evaluation factors. The proposal will be evaluated for demonstrated 
proficiency in each technical subject included in the proposal.
    2. The adequacy and availability of relevant test facilities and 
equipment identified to accomplish the proposed research effort.
    3. The applicant's previous and current organizational experience 
and personnel qualifications as related to this effort.
    4. The completeness and clarity of the applicant's management plans 
for accomplishing the proposed research will be evaluated. This 
includes the task schedule and proposed management plan needed to 
direct and coordinate identified project tasks.

Terms and Conditions of the Award

    1. Procedures for the protection of the rights and welfare of human 
subjects in NHTSA-sponsored experiments are set forth in NHTSA Orders 
700-1 and 700-3. Any recipient proposing the use of human subjects must 
satisfy the requirements and guidelines of the NHTSA Orders 700 series 
prior to award of the cooperative agreement. It is not anticipated that 
non-human subjects will be used in any testing performed under this 
cooperative agreement. A copy of the NHTSA Orders 700 series may be 
obtained from the administrative information contact designated in this 
    2. Prior to award, the recipient must comply with the certification 
requirements of 49 CFR part 20--Department of Transportation New 
Restrictions on Lobbying and 49 CFR 29--Department of Transportation 
Government-wide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) and 
Government-wide Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Grants).
    3. Each cooperative agreement will be negotiated to include 
provisions appropriate to organization conflicts of interest, patent 
rights, rights in data, and copyright retention by the applicant. At 
the time of negotiation, applicants may be required to disclose all 
actual or apparent conflicts of interest.
    4. During the effective period of the cooperative agreement(s) 
awarded as a result of this notice, the agreement(s) shall be subject 
to NHTSA's General Provisions for Assistance Agreements, the cost 
principles of OMB Circular A-21, A-122, or FAR 31.2, as applicable to 
the recipient, and the requirements of 49 CFR Part 20 and Part 29. The 
agreement(s) shall also be subject to the general administrative 
requirements of 49 CFR Part 19--Department of Transportation Uniform 
Administrative Requirements for Grants and Agreements with Institutions 
of Higher Education, Hospitals, and Other Non-Profit Organizations.

5. Reporting Requirements:

    a. Research Progress Reports: The recipient shall provide bimonthly 
research progress reports which shall be due 15 days after the 
reporting period, and a final research report within 45 days after the 
completion of the research effort. An original and two copies of each 
of these research reports shall be submitted to the COTR.
    b. Oral Briefings: There shall be a startup briefing held at the 
NHTSA Office of Crash Avoidance Research, Washington, DC within 15 days 
of initiation of the cooperative agreement. The recipient shall conduct 
semiannual oral presentations of research results for the COTR and 
other interested NHTSA personnel. An original and at least two copies 
of briefing materials shall be submitted to the COTR at the time of 
each briefing.

    Issued on:
W.A. Walsh,
George L. Parker,
Acting Associate Administrator for Research and Development.
[FR Doc. 94-19215 Filed 8-5-94; 8:45 am]

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