Panos G. Michalopoulos

Panos G. Michalopoulos

Panos G. Michalopoulos

Professor Emeritus, Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering


Civil Engineering Building
Room 163
500 Pillsbury Drive SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455


  • B.S., 1969, Civil Engineering, College of Engineering of Athens, Greece
  • M.S., 1972, Civil Engineering (Transportation), University of Florida
  • Ph.D., 1975, Civil Engineering (Transportation), University of Florida

Professional Background

  • Assistant highway engineer, A. Loukakos & Assoc., Greece
  • Engineer I, traffic operations. Florida Department of Transportation
  • Assistant professor, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, N.Y. 1976-1977
Research Interests

Dr. Michalopoulos has more than 50 years of consulting, research and teaching experience in traffic engineering, management, operations and control. He has been a professor of transportation and traffic engineering since 1976.

Major research areas include modeling of traffic flow dynamics, traffic flow theory simulation and control, traffic operations in freeways and urban streets, computer and high- tech applications for Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) through image processing,learning systems, artificial intelligence, expert systems and object-oriented programming. More recently, areas of research interest have included continuum modeling of traffic flow dynamics in complex large-scale networks. The resulting models have been refined to include complex interrupted flow dynamics, freeway entrances and exits, weaving areas, andintersections. The models were incorporated into a PC-based simulation program (called Kronos) for freeway corridors. A wide-area machine vision vehicledetection system was developed for testing and validating traffic flow models, advanced adaptive control, automatic surveillance (incident detection) andreal-time database generation. Based on this video detection system, calledAutoscope, a live laboratory was built for collecting detailed trafficmeasurements and simultaneous video recording for testing and validating dynamictraffic flow models, control strategies, and other technologies.Autoscope isthe most widely used video dection sensor for ITS projects worldwide.

Recently established a traffic simulation laboratory at the ITS institute, which was used to simulate the ramp control effectiveness in the Twin Cities freeways as well as testing new control strategies. As part of this research, a virtual Traffic Management Laboratory (TramLab) was also developed. This emulates all functions of a traffic management center and can be used for testing new traffic management schemes and technologies prior to field implementation.

Michalopoulos co-founded the Center for Transportation Studies (CTS) at the University of Minnesota, which is currently one of the largest and most respected in the US. He is a distinguished member of many professional societies and has received awards from the Institute of Transportation Engineers, The Transportation Research Board, IEEE and others.

Dr. Michalopoulos developed a patented process for machine vision based vehicle detection and founded a company (Image Sensing Systems) for commercializing the technology, which pioneered the field of wide area vehicle detection (widely known as Autoscope). Substantial royalties from this invention flowed to the Center for Transportation Studies for supporting research and establishing a chair in transportation engineering at the department.

Selected Publications

Hourdos, J., Garg, V., Michalopoulos, P. and Davis, G. 2006. Real-time detection of crash prone conditions in freeway high crash locations. Transportation Research Record. DOI: 10.1177/0361198106196800110

Xin, W., Hourdos, J. and Michalopoulos, P. 2006. Comprehensive evaluation of a new integrated freeway ramp control strategy. Transportation Research Record. DOI: 10.1177/0361198106195900106.

Feng, B., Hourdos, J. and Michalopoulos, P. 2006. Improving Minnesota's stratified ramp control strategy. Transportation Research Record. DOI: 10.1177/0361198106195900109

Beegala, A., Hourdakis, J. and Michalopoulos, P. 2005. Methodology for performance optimization of ramp control strategies through microsimulation. Transportation Research Record. DOI: 10.1177/0361198105192500110

Xin, W., Hourdakis, J. and Michalopoulos, P. 2005. Real-time freeway ramp control taking into account ramp demand and ramp queue size information. Traffic Engineering and Control, 46(9): 340 .

Hourdakis, J., Michalopoulos, P., and Morris, T. 2004. Deployment of wireless, mobile detection and surveillance for data intensive applications. Transportation Research Record, 1900: 140-148.

Michalopoulos, P.G. 2001. Non-intrusive advanced sensor devices for ATMS. Journal of Systems and Control Engineering, Proc. Inst. Mech. Engrg., 215:345-55.

Michalopoulos, P.G., G. Liu and A. Lyrintzis. 1998. An improved high order model for freeway traffic flow. Trans. Res. Record, 1644: 37-47.

Michalopoulos, P.G. 1998. Recent developments of advanced technology in freeway management projects. Traffic Eng. and Control, 39(3):160-5.

Liu, G., A. Lyrintzis and P.G. Michalopoulos. 1996. Modelling of freeway merging and diverging flow dynamics. Applied Mathematical Modelling, 20: 453-69.