UMD Travel App Featured at ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit

An app that helps commuters get across town in less time and at a lower cost was featured last week at the Energy Innovation Summit Technology Showcase, hosted by the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). The incenTrip app was one of only six ARPA-E featured technologies demonstrated at the showcase, wich was visited by thousands of energy leaders from government, business, and academia.

incenTrip, developed by a University of Maryland team lead by Professor Lei Zhang, uses individual traffic prediction and real-time data to help users navigate an ever-changing multimodal transportation system.

For individual travelers, incenTrip accurately predicts traffic to help them avoid both day-to-day congestion and traffic jams caused by accidents, work zones, special events, and adverse weather conditions. App users earn monetary and non-monetary rewards—customoized for them and based on real-time conditions—while receiving recommendations on the best travel mode, departure time, and route before and during a trip. In addition, incenTrip helps users adopt eco-friendly driving behavior that could save them hundreds of dollars in fuel cost each year.

incenTrip also revolutionizes travel demand and traffic management. By providing incentives for travelers, government agencies can more effectively fight congestion and reduce energy use and emissions. Participating agencies can monitor incenTrip performance with a customized dashboard.

Residents of the Baltimore-Washington, D.C. region can download incenTrip from the Google Play Store. The app will be available to Apple users soon. 

“In collaboration with public- and private-sector partners, our next step is to scale up the technology to cities across the nation to solve transportation problems by rewarding travelers,” said Zhang.

Published March 19, 2018