The MIT Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Lab was established in 1990 by Professor Moshe Ben-Akiva. Since its inception, the ITS Lab has conducted numerous studies of transportation systems and developed network modeling and simulation tools. The lab’s areas of research include discrete choice and demand modeling techniques, activity-based models, freight transport modeling, and data collection methods for behavioral modeling. Today, lab members are located at MIT’s Cambridge campus and its first research center outside of Cambridge – the Singapore–MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) Centre.
The ITS Lab is spearheading several projects on the planning, design, and operation of future passenger and freight systems. In particular, the Smartphone based Future Mobility Sensing (FMS) project has already achieved worldwide recognition for its implementation of a broad data collection effort using smartphones and GPS loggers matched with web-based tools to infer human activities in space and time, including mobility and location choices. ITS Lab researchers are also leading the development of the Integrated Simulation Platform: SimMobility. The SimMobility project integrates and links together various mobility-sensitive behavioral models with state-of-the art simulators to predict impacts of mobility demands on transportation networks, services, and vehicular emissions and to evaluate future urban transportation scenarios.
The ITS Lab achievements include two computer systems developed under Professor Ben-Akiva’s supervision: MITSIMLab, an open-source microscopic simulator; and DynaMIT, a mesoscopic simulator – which includes associated algorithms for dynamic traffic assignment, traffic predictions and real-time generation of traffic information and guidance. In 2011, DynaMIT was awarded the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) ITS Society Outstanding Application Award.