Working with officials from the U.S. State Department, three researchers with the Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI) have helped design a new type of safety barrier that is easier and less costly to repair than the current systems now being used around embassies and other sensitive compounds.
Their invention, Surface Mount Wedge Barrier, was recognized this spring during the annual Patent and Innovation Awards Luncheon, held at the George Bush Presidential Library.
“We designed a prototype that has been crash tested at the Riverside Campus,” says TTI Assistant Agency Director Dean Alberson, manager of the Institute’s Crashworthy Structures Program. “We were able to easily remove the above ground damaged section after the full-scale impact. This allows a rapid replacement of the upper section since the in-ground portion of the system was undamaged. This will save end users time and money each time these barrier systems suffer a nuisance or even a full-scale hit.”
Along with individuals from the State Department, Michael Brackin, D. Lance Bullard and Alberson were awarded patent # 8,956,072 by the U.S. Patent Office.
Also recognized during the luncheon was TTI Assistant Agency Director Stephen Roop, who developed the innovative Freight Shuttle System (FSS). Roop has been awarded numerous patents related to the project, including patent # 9,176,076 — Cargo Inspection System. The privately funded Freight Shuttle, now in the prototype stage, is an electric powered system that could revolutionize the way we move freight using proven technologies combined in a new way.
“The cargo inspection system greatly facilitates the cross-border express model of the Freight Shuttle,” Roop explains. “The system allows for a 100 percent inspection of the freight moving between the United States and Mexico and provides for the information flow between U.S. Customs and Border Protection and its Mexican counterpart.”