One idea will change the future of transportation — is it yours?

The Connected Vehicle Technology Challenge is calling on problem solvers to share their ideas about innovative uses of dedicated short range communications (DSRC), an advanced wireless technology that enables vehicles to communicate.

This technology could be used to:

  • Tell you where to find available parking spaces
  • Help you make your bus or train connection on time
  • Notify you when an available cab is nearby
  • Cut pollution by reducing emissions as your car approaches a red light

How would you use it?

Submissions can be short and need not be technical. Finalists will receive a free trip to the Intelligent Transportation Systems World Congress in Florida this October to share their concepts and network with leading transportation researchers and investors.

Everyone has ideas. Share yours today.

Post a Submission


America’s transportation system is among the best in the world, but Americans face crash risks, congestion, environmental impacts, and other detriments that erode our quality of life. Smart ideas on how to apply advanced wireless technology can make the transportation system safer, more efficient and even “greener.”

An advanced open source wireless technology called Dedicated Short-Range Communications (DSRC) allows vehicles of all kinds, whether traveling slowly or even over 60 mph, to communicate with each other, stationary roadside equipment, and mobile devices.  Thus far, the majority of applications have been aimed toward crash avoidance.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) is undertaking a new program to develop new applications, devices, products, business solutions, and a range of services that improve transportation’s role in safety and quality of life.  The DOT believes that there are new approaches, partnerships and devices for using DSRC that innovators among the broader public can and will devise, if they are called to participate.  This is that invitation.

When vehicles talk to each other, what should they say?

The Connected Vehicle Technology Challenge (the “Challenge”) is soliciting short descriptions of novel, implementable ideas for products or approaches that utilize DSRC to offer benefits to travelers or society at large.  The six best submissions will be awarded a trip to the premier global conference on advanced transportation technology, the 2011 Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) World Congress, to be held in Orlando in October 2011.  Awardees will be the guests of honor at a special session of the ITS World Congress.  In the session, they will present their winning idea to an audience of ITS experts, business professionals, and potential investors in the development of their concepts.

The role of this Challenge

Working with our many stakeholders, the DOT aims to improve safety, mobility, and the environmental impacts of transportation.  DSRC has the potential to provide dramatic benefits in these goal areas, but only when it is widely implemented in vehicles and roadside equipment.  To accelerate DSRC’s adoption, the DOT is seeking feasible ideas for valuable new ways to utilize DSRC.

This Challenge is seeking all sorts of ideas, from anyone.  Winning submissions will be short—20 double-spaced pages or less— and need not be technical.  The barriers to entry are intentionally low.

The submissions must describe an idea for a novel use, application, device, product, service or solution that relies on DSRC.  The technical, engineering details that would enable the idea do not need to be fully spelled out, although technical feasibility is an important factor in judging the submissions.  Similarly, while a full business plan is not a necessary part of a winning submission, the potential for widespread adoption is also an important criterion in judging.

Through this Challenge, the DOT aims to develop new, actionable ideas, and to connect inventors with potential partners—businesses and investors—that might help bring the ideas to life.

Hackathon Sponsors


Finalists (6)

Six awardees will be honored speakers at a special session at the 2011 World Congress on Intelligent Transportation Systems. Awardees will receive paid registration, transportation, meals and accommodations for the World Congress, which will be held in Orlando, Florida, from October 16-20,2011.

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:

How to enter

  1. Read the Challenge rules.
  2. Prepare a description of your idea in no more than 6000 words (about 20 double-spaced pages), in PDF or Microsoft Word format.
  3. If desired, prepare a video or images to illustrate your idea.
  4. Submit your materials through this website using the orange button below.


A panel of expert judges from the DOT's Intelligent Transportation Systems Program and other stakeholders

A panel of expert judges from the DOT's Intelligent Transportation Systems Program and other stakeholders

Judging Criteria

  • Technical and operational feasibility
    How plausible is it that this Concept could be implemented? What risks or challenges exist, and how could they be overcome?
  • Potential for widespread adoption
    How likely is it that this Concept would be widely adopted, if it were developed? What are the risks facing broad adoption, and how could they be overcome?
  • Innovation
    To what degree is this a novel idea?
  • Social benefit
    How much would this idea benefit travelers or society at large? Emphasis is on improvements to transportation safety, mobility, reliability, accessibility and/or environmental impact.

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