Wissam Kontar

Current Institution: University of Wisconsin-Madison

Email: kontar@wisc.edu

Bio: Wissam Kontar is currently a PhD candidate in the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his B.E in Civil Engineering in 2018 from the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. His research interest is on the design, control, and modeling of self-driving vehicles. Broadly, his research efforts focused on developing decision-making methodologies tailored for transportation networks in the era of connected and automated systems. Wissam’s research has been published in top scientific journals as IEEE, ISTTT, TRB, TRC, and ERL. His recent articles have been featured in IEEE Access and ERL, and attracted attention from prominent media outlets as Popular Science, Gizmodo, Phys Org, Science Daily, Politico, and others.

Abstract: Enabling System Level Functionality for Autonomous Vehicles

Transportation systems are ever evolving, dynamic and complex. Self-driving vehicles are becoming more powerful and rapidly infiltrating the global market. As such, a new dimension of complexity is disrupting these transportation systems, one that comes from heterogeneity in behavior, performance, and design. My research efforts have focused on guiding the design of emerging transportation technologies in ways that are not myopic but consider system level performance. I have studied analytical methods to characterize the behavior of various control algorithms for commercially available automated vehicles and elucidate their impact on system dynamics. I proposed control algorithms that preserve the desired performance of automated vehicles and safeguard them from real world uncertainties. The true potential, however, of automation in transportation systems is yet to be unlocked. Harnessing the immense computational power of edge devices will prove pivotal towards this goal. Serving this goal has led us to rethink IoT from a federated perspective; the Internet of Federated Things (IoFT).