The Advanced Transportation Weather Information System (ATWIS) project, first titled Short-Range Weather Forecasting Decision Support within Rural Advanced Traveler Information Systems (ATIS), was designed to provide a current road and forecasted weather report to the traveling public and commercial vehicles across approximately 875 mi (1408 km) of interstate within North Dakota and South Dakota. This prototype project was to investigate how to merge information and current technologies from both state and private industry to provide in-vehicle decision support data for the traveler. In its fourth year of operations, now covering 9,600 mi (15,446 km) of road across North Dakota, South Dakota, and Minnesota including interstate, U.S., and state trunk highways, the ATWIS program has grown far past its original goals and objectives. The expansion of the in-vehicle traveler information system has developed an interest in the application of the basic technology to other areas of transportation. This growth has truly created an over-arching weather information system for transportation far beyond the in-vehicle system. However, unlike efforts to adapt current governmental weather forecast products designed for general public safety and air travel, the ATWIS was conceived and designed to provide information specifically for ground transportation, its users and maintainers. This federally funded demonstration and operational project was designed to last only five years with federal funds in a research environment. From the very beginning forward thinking visionaries, both locally and in Washington, D.C., set the necessary objectives and plans in place to ensure that this project would begin the process of becoming a commercialized and self-sustaining program by the end of the fifth year. The goal of taking one of the many Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) research projects across the nation from dream to commercial reality by creating value from the application of technology is ready to take its steps out of the world of research and into the world of business. This paper examines the development and operational history of the nation's first, and currently only, multi-state ATIS. The history reviews how and why certain decisions were made during both development and demonstration of the project. The paper examines the commercial application of the technology, as the system has grown outside its primary objectives, and the direction a commercial partner has taken ATWIS, or more precisely its technology base, into the business world. While an in-vehicle information system was the driving force that led to the creation of this technology, it spawned additional products and services, through one of its commercial partners, that have increased the accuracy and reduced the overall cost of site-specific weather information to both the traveling public and departments of transportation.


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 9-13

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00793258
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0965231046
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 22 2000 12:00AM