KSU, Curiosity Lab Partner on Vehicle-to-Everything Research

Billy Kihei
Billy Kihei

MARIETTA, Ga. (Jul 20, 2020) — Kennesaw State University and Curiosity Lab, an autonomous vehicle and smart city living laboratory, have entered a strategic partnership to advance research in vehicle-to-everything (V2X) technology applications, beginning with the launch of open-source devices developed by engineering faculty and students.

Led by assistant professor of computer engineering Billy Kihei, several Kennesaw State students will conduct research in V2X technology using what Kihei calls the Owl Box, an electronic device that can communicate with vehicles to track information such as speed, roadway specifications, and GPS data. The units, assembled by students in KSU’s Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology, are inexpensive by design and will feature open-source software allowing startups, entrepreneurs and road authorities to test and explore emerging V2X technologies.

“The information gathered by units such as our ‘Owl Box’ and the creation of V2X technologies will improve the condition and safety of roads and cities across the globe,” Kihei said. “Creating an open-source option and working with Curiosity Lab, we want to make this technology affordable and readily available to developers to create their own applications. The potential is unlimited. We want to unleash innovation.”

KSU selected Curiosity Lab as one of its primary test locations for the Owl Boxes due to the Lab’s autonomous vehicle test track and commitment to supporting and facilitating innovation. In a future world where vehicles, roadways, traffic signals, phones and buildings will independently and automatically communicate with one another, it will be critical to understand capabilities, opportunities and limits of technology, said Betsy Plattenburg, executive director of Curiosity Lab at Peachtree Corners.

“Curiosity Lab’s autonomous vehicle track, active 5G and strong partner network provide a unique opportunity for Kennesaw State to test this emerging technology in a real-world setting,” she said. “Not only will the Lab help KSU ensure its DSRC units are ready for broader use, the Lab’s collaborative environment will help to get broad exposure for this developing technology helping to accelerate its deployment.”

– Travis Highfield


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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers more than 150 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its approximately 41,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the third-largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the region and from 92 countries across the globe. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status, and one of the 50 largest public institutions in the country. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu

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