Alexander A. Kurzhanskiy


Richmond Field Station, MC 3580
RichmondCA 94804
United States
Email Address: 


Dr. Alex Kurzhanskiy is an Associate Research Engineer at California PATH, which he joined as a Postdoctoral Researcher in 2008. By 2011, he had become an integral part of PATH’s research staff. His research interests and expertise include transportation management systems, vehicle automation, connected vehicles and infrastructure, multi-modal modeling and simulation, multi-dimensional geospatial and timeseries data analysis, econometrics, distributed algorithms and cloud computing. His credentials include an M.S in Applied Mathematics & Computer Science from Lomonosov Moscow University and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science at the University of California, Berkeley.

Recently, he led the team that created Operations Planning Toolbox (OPT) – a multi-modal mesoscopic traffic simulator for analysis of freeway corridor operations. OPT is simple to learn and use, and it serves as a replacement for the legacy simulation software FREQ12, also developed by UC Berkeley many years ago.

Presently, Alex runs several research projects on public bus transit. They deal with operational safety, and with the ridership and performance. For example, one of these projects involved monitoring and analysis of bus transit operations under COVID: impact of transit agencies’ COVID response, influencing factors of the ridership recovery, ridership demographics in the context of certain economic indicators. Another project aims at developing user-centric informational trip assistant for riders with disabilities.

Before this, Alex conducted projects on managed lanes that developed modeling methodologies and simulation software for High Occupancy or Tolled (HOT) lanes, including estimation and modeling of HOT violations and assessing their impact on freeway operation. He has also heavily resaerched urban traffic optimization, co-leading Caltrans project “Safe Operation of Automated Vehicles at Intersections” and a project from the National Science Foundation (NSF) called “Traffic Operating System for Smart Cities”, which explored coordination of vehicle-level, street-level and network-level control. The NSF project had transfer-to-practice component with connected vehicles forming platoons at intersections – see the video of the platooning experiment in Arcadia, CA.

Alex has also co-led numerous projects on intelligent intersections aimed at making the passage of automated cars through intersections safe and efficient. This is achieved by intelligent infrastructure (sensing + object identification + I2V) augmenting connected vehicles’ onboard sensing with data from the roadside detection.


  • Transportation: Traffic Engineering, Traffic Modeling & Simulation, Traffic Signal Control, GIS, Traffic Data Collection & Processing
  • Dynamical Systems: Automatic Control Theory and Applications, Stochastic Processes
  • Partial Differential Equations: Numerical Methods, Inverse Problems
  • Cyber-Physical Systems: Dynamic Modeling & Simulation, Identification, State Estimation & Control
  • Data Science: Time Series Analysis, Cluster Analysis, Convex Optimization, Compressed Sensing
  • Information Technology: Distributed Computation, Parallelization, MapReduce, CUDA and GPU computing


Journal Papers

On Node Models for High-Dimensional Road Networks
M. Wright, G. Gomes, R. Horowitz, A.A. Kurzhanskiy. Transportation Research, Part B. 105C, pp. 212-234. Online: 2017

Traffic Management: An Outlook
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Economics of Transportation Special Issue: Transportation Science. 4(3), pp. 135-146. 2015

Modeling Toll Lanes and Dynamic Pricing Control
E. Dorogush and A.A. Kurzhanskiy. International Journal of Computer and System Sciences, 54(3), pp. 440-457. Online: 2014

Guaranteed Prediction and Estimation of the State of a Road Network
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Transportation Research, Part C, 21(1), pp. 163-180.  2012

Reach Set Computation and Control Synthesis for Discrete-Time Dynamical Systems with Disturbances
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Automatica, 47(7), pp. 1414-1426.  2011

Theory and Computational Techniques for Analysis of Discrete-Time Control Systems with Disturbances
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Optimization Methods & Software, 26(4-5), pp. 719-746.  2011

Active Traffic Management on Road Networks: A Macroscopic Approach
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Philosophical Transactions of Royal Society A, 368, pp. 4607-4626.  2010

Behavior of the Cell Transmission Model and Effectiveness of Ramp Metering
G. Gomes, R. Horowitz, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya, and J. Kwon. Transportation Research C, 16(4), pp. 485-513.  2008

Ellipsoidal Techniques for Reachability Analysis of Discrete-Time Linear Systems
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control, 52(1), pp. 26-38.  2007

Conference Papers
The Disengagement Dilemma of Automated Vehicles
A. Medury,  M. Yu, O. Grembek, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya. ITS World Congress in Montreal, Canada. 2017
An Energy-Based Optimal Control Problem for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Flight Planning
Z. Liu,  R. Sengupta, A. Kurzhanskiy. SICE Annual Conference in Kanazawa, Japan. 2017
Effect of Adaptive and Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control on Throughput of Signalized Arterials
A. Askari,  D.A. Farias, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya. IEEE Intelligent Vehicles Symposium in Redondo Beach, CA, USA. 2017
Mixed Monotonicity of First-In-First-Out Traffic Flow Models
S. Coogan, M. Arcak, A.A. Kurzhanskiy. 55th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control in Las Vegas, NV, USA. 2016
Managing Non-Recurrent Congestion in Arterial Networks
J. Lioris,  A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya. 6th International Conference on Environment, Chemistry and Biology in Sydney, Australia. Best paper.  2016
A Hybrid Automaton Characterization of Road Network Node Models
M. Wright, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, R. Horowitz. 10th IFAC Symposium on Nonlinear Control Systems in Monterey, CA, USA. 2016
Variants of Max Pressure Control Policy for a Network of Signalized Intersections
J.Lioris, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya. 23rd World Congress on Intelligent Transportation Systems in Melburne, Australia.  2016
Macroscopic Freeway Model Calibration with Partially Observed Data. A Case Study.
G. Dervisoglu , A.A. Kurzhanskiy , G. Gomes and R. Horowitz. American Control Conference, Portland, OR. 2014

Control Experiments for A Network of Signalized Intersections Using the ‘.Q’ Simulator
J.Lioris, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, D. Triantafyllos and P. Varaiya. Presented at the IEEE International Workshop on Discrete Event Systems, Ecole Normale Superieure de Cachan, France.  2014

Using Aurora Road Network Modeler for Active Traffic Management
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. American Control Conference, Baltimore. Invited paper.  2010

Aurora RNM – A Macroscopic Simulation Tool for Arterial Traffic Modeling and Control
A.H.F. Chow, G. Gomes, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, and P. Varaiya. 89th Annual TRB Meeting.  2010

Set-Valued Estimation of Freeway Traffic Density
A.A. Kurzhanskiy. 12th IFAC Symposium on Control in Transportation Systems, Redondo Beach.  2009

Aurora Road Network Modeler
A.A. Kurzhanskiy, J. Kwon, and P. Varaiya. 12th IFAC Symposium on Control in Transportation Systems.  2009

Aurora Arterial Modeler- A Macroscopic Tool for Urban Traffic Control
A.H.F. Chow, G. Gomes, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, and P. Varaiya. 12th IFAC Symposium on Control in Transportation Systems.  2009

Congestion in ACTM Model
G. Gomes, R. Horowitz, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya, and J. Kwon. European Control Conference, Koss, Greece.  2007

Ellipsoidal Toolbox (ET)
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. 45th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control, San Diego.  2006

Book Chapters
Active Traffic Management
P. Varaiya and A.A. Kurzhanskiy. Chapter 20 of “Homi Bhabha and the Computer Revolution”,
R.K. Shyamasundar and M.A. Pai, Editors. Oxford University Press.  2011

Computation of Reach Sets for Dynamical Systems
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Chapter 29 of Control Handbook, 2nd Edition.
W.S. Levine, Editor. Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.  2010

Technical Reports and Working Papers
D. Khalthil, A. Kurzhanskiy, P. Varaiya, J. Perez. UCConnect Final Report. 2017
R. Horowitz, A. Kurzhanskiy, M. Wright. UCTC Final Report. 2016
R. Horowitz, A. Kurzhanskiy, A. Siddiqui, M. Wright. UCConnect Final Report.  2016

Online Traffic Simulation Service for Highway Incident Management
A.A. Kurzhanskiy. Final report: SHRP 2 Reliability IDEA Project L15C. Online:  2013

Strategic Placement of Loop Detectors for Improving the Efficiency of Ramp Metering
K. Chung, G. Gomes, S.H. Park, A.A. Kurzhanskiy, and S.-Y. Kho. Working paper.  2010

Macroscopic Modeling of Multiple Vehicle Types and Freeways with HOV Lanes
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and A. Muralidharan. Working paper. Online: :

Aurora – Object-Oriented Framework for Simulation and Analysis of Flow Networks
A.A. Kurzhanskiy, J. Kwon, and P. Varaiya. Working paper. Online: : 2008

CTMSIM – An Interactive Macroscopic Traffic Simulator for MATLAB
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Working paper. Online:

Ellipsoidal Toolbox
A.A. Kurzhanskiy and P. Varaiya. Technical Report 2006-46, EECS, UC Berkeley.  2006