Henry Liu | Faculty

Research Professor, Enginneering Systems Group

University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, 2901 Baxter Rd. Room 103, Ann Arbor, MI 48109


(734) 763-6076, fax (734) 647-3330

Other Appointments

  • Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Director, Center for Connected and Automated Transportation


  • PhD, Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Wisconsin at Madison, 2000
  • BS, Automotive Engineering, Tsinghua University (China),1993

Research Interests

Prof. Liu conducts interdisciplinary research at the interface between civil and mechanical engineering. Specifically, his scholarly interests concern traffic flow monitoring, modeling, and control, as well as testing and evaluation of connected and automated vehicles. He has published more than 100 refereed journal papers and his publications have been cited over 6000 times according to Google Scholar Citations. Prof. Liu is also one of the top 50 leading authors in the past 50 years (1969-2019) in the prestigious Transportation Research journal. Prof. Liu and his research team has pioneered the development of the world’s first connected vehicle based traffic signal optimization system, OSaaS (Optimizing Signals as a Service), that has been implemented in more than 20 cities in China with 2300 signalized intersections. He and his team also developed the patent-pending augmented reality system for testing autonomous vehicles, and the SMART Signal (Systematic Management of Arterial Road Traffic Signal) system using high-resolution event-based traffic signal data. Professor Liu and his work have been widely recognized in public media for promoting smart transportation innovations. He has appeared on a number of media outlets including CNBC, Forbes, Technode, etc. In 2019, Professor Liu was invited to testify on the national transportation research agenda in front of the US House Subcommittee on Research and Technology. 


  • Managing Editor, Journal of Intelligent Transportation Systems
  • Associate Editor, Transportation Research Part C


  • Best of ITS Award Finalist, ITS America,  2013
  • New Faculty Member Award, Council of University Transportation Centers (CUTC), 2008                                                                                                         

Key Projects

  • Traffic signal optimization with connected vehicle data, funded by DOE, CCAT, DiDi, etc.
  • Autonomous testing and evaluation, funded by NHSTA, CCAT, etc.

Student Engagement

Professor Liu has nurtured a new generation of scholars and industry experts. Some of his PhD students and postdocs have joined first class universities such as Columbia University, Purdue University, RPI, etc. and high-tech companies such as Facebook, Amazon, etc. 

Additional Information

Michigan Traffic Lab