Li using NSF CRII funding for city-scale traffic simulation

Will address and assist with management of traffic systems

Dr. Weizi Li, assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science, was recently awarded a Computer and Information Science and Engineering Research Initiation Initiative (CRII) grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) starting July 1, 2022.

Li’s award for $174,789, entitled “Towards Effective and Efficient City-scale Traffic Reconstruction,” will develop effective and efficient city-scale traffic reconstruction methods for the purpose of: 1) estimating travel time of individual road segments using time information of mobile data and subsequently estimate other macroscopic traffic states; 2) developing novel map-matching techniques for low-sampling rate mobile data; 3) using simulation-based optimization to reconstruct microscopic traffic dynamics while ensuring consistent traffic flows at the boundaries of data-sufficient and data-lacking areas; and finally 4) developing a hybrid simulation to achieve highly-efficient reconstruction through the study of various intelligent transportation systems applications’ requirements on efficiency and reconstruction fidelity and an effective conversion method between macroscopic and microscopic traffic simulation.

Li’s research will directly benefit the design, planning, and management of traffic systems. In addition, this research will include the training and supporting student research careers as well as outreach activities that introduce intelligent transportation systems and machine learning methods to high school, undergraduate, and graduate students and minorities to create awareness about traffic and Smart City (an initiative to address the needs of Memphis citizens utilizing emerging technologies and innovations arising from research at the University of Memphis).


About the NSF Computer and Information Science and Engineering Research Initiation Initiative (CRII)  program (from the NSF Website)

The CRII program is part of CISE's strategy to increase its investments in the development and growth of the research capabilities of future generations of computer and information scientists and engineers, including computational and data scientists and engineers. This solicitation provides the opportunity for early-career researchers who do not have adequate organizational or other means of support to pursue their early-career research, including to recruit and mentor their first graduate students (or undergraduate students, in the case of faculty at undergraduate and two-year institutions), which is one critical step in a career pathway that is expected to lead to research independence and a subsequent stream of projects, discoveries, students and publications.

CRII awards will be given to researchers to undertake exploratory investigations, to acquire and test preliminary data, develop collaborations within or across research disciplines, and/or develop new algorithms, approaches, and system designs/prototypes, which together or separately may lead to improved capacity to write successful proposals submitted to other programs in the future.

For more information on the NSF CRII program, please contact the Division of Research & Innovation at researchdev@memphis.edu. If you have questions or further interest in this research, contact Li at wli@memphis.edu.