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Mobility and Energy Transitions Analysis


Research for Mobility and Energy Transitions

Mobility and Energy Transitions Analysis Group (META) does research on how new technologies related to transportation affect the broader social, economic, infrastructure, and technological systems.  A theme that sets this group apart from others is an attention to the question, “How do we get there from here?”  where there and here can include changes in transportation systems and related energy systems.  This concept is best captured in the word TRANSITIONS emphasizing long term (multi-decade) changes and a wide look at the systems involved and the people making choices.  The group addresses questions such as:

  • How will electric vehicles be introduced in passenger and heavy-duty operations over time under different scenarios?
  • How does alternative fuel adoption affect the infrastructure and demand on the grid?
  • How do social and urban factors affect the adoption of autonomy and connectivity? 
  • How do adoption rates affect energy, congestion, and mobility for different populations?

Group members have backgrounds in economics, consumer choice, integrated assessment, transportation systems engineering, machine learning, computer science, simulation, and optimization.  The META group collaborates with multi-disciplinary scientists across ORNL and other research institutions.

Notable alumni of the META Group (and its predecessors) include, among others:

  • David Greene (Research Professor, University of Tennessee)
  • Zhenhong Lin (Professor, South China University of Technology)
  • Fei Xie (Research Scientist, Amazon)
  • Zulqarnain Khattak (Project Scientist, Carnegie Mellon University)