ISE Assistant Professor Changhyun Kwon is the receipient of a 2014 NSF CAREER Award. The $400,000, 5 year award will allow Professor Kwon to advance routing methods in hazardous materials (hazmat) transportation to mitigate the risk of hazmat accidents and provide fundamental building blocks to bring the current research and practice up to the next level. Despite significant advances in risk management theory, current research and practice in hazmat transportation heavily rely on very simple risk measures. This should be unacceptable for risk-averse routing. In addition, a serious issue of data uncertainty has not been well addressed. This project will provide essential theory and algorithms of Spectral Risk Measures (SRM) applied in hazmat transportation, which have the potential to radically change current research and practice in government planning for safer management of infrastructure. This project will deliver routing methods based on the SRM concept under data uncertainty and time dependency. SRM will be shown to be effective in low-probability, high-consequence applications. If successful, this project will provide the most advanced risk mitigation methods for hazmat routing.
Since the research will be tested with real-world cases, the results have great potential to be applied to other real-world hazmat transportation problems. This project will also have an impact on other transportation problems of a similar nature. The risk measure, models, and solution procedures are also applicable to gas-emission reduction, supply-chain disruption management, humanitarian logistics, and the design of reliable networks. This project will also contribute to building research and teaching infrastructures. The web-based simulation system will be used for teaching and testing research ideas, demonstrating the nature of hazmat transportation, and training practitioners. This project will educate and train students from underrepresented groups as well as local high school students.