Sahar's research investigates driver behavior using human/machine learning and agent-based modeling techniques. She has researched driver decision prediction models at the onset of yellow at signalized intersections, and developed a novel safety surrogate measure applying intelligent transportation systems (ITS) technologies. She has conducted research related to traffic safety evaluation and analysis by installation of a real-time data collection and safety improvement system at signalized intersections to address dilemma zone safety issues with control solutions. She is also experienced in experimental design of naturalistic behavior studies as well as traffic safety scenario development and implementation in driving simulator. Her lab at SDSU features a driving simulator which is used to examine new safety related ideas that are dangerous or time/money consuming to be examined in the real world. In another stream of work, she has studied infrastructure-based safety systems such as innovative delineation systems to increase road users' safety. She is presently working on a human factor study researching the impacts of vehicle to infrastructure communication on driver behavior in a connected vehicle environment.

Research Interests


Ph.D. Virginia Tech (Civil Engineering) 2014
M.Sc. Sharif University of Technology (Civil Engineering) 2008
B.Sc. Iran University of Science and Technology (Civil Engineering) 2005


Associate Director (SDSU Director), Safe-D National University Transportation Center 2016 - present
Assistant Professor, San Diego State University (SDSU) 2015 - present
Adjunct Faculty, Computational Science Research Center (CSRC), SDSU 2016 - present
Research Associate, Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) 2014 - 2015
Graduate Research Assistant, Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) 2013 - 2014
Graduate Research/Teaching Assistant, Virginia Tech (Department of Civil Engineering) 2010 - 2014


# February 02, 2017: SDSU to join $28 million project studying automated-car technology. Link

# January 11, 2017: Driving The Future of Transportation Infrastructure. SDSU brings a West Coast perspective to a consortium with $28 million in funding to explore the future of transportation. Link

# January 03, 2017: People to Watch in 2017; Machiani will serve as executive director of SDSU's University Transportation Center Link

# December 12, 2016: Virginia Tech Transportation Institute received $28 million grant for technology research. Link

# December 11, 2016: Virginia Tech Transportation Institute and partners named a national safety center by U.S. Department of Transportation. Link

# December 7, 2016: Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) announced federal funding for transportation research and innovation for San Diego State University. Link

# February 23, 2016: Driving Ahead: A recent addition to the engineering department is trying to make our transportation infrastructure safer. Link

# September 21, 2016: National Science Foundation Grant; Improving Wildfire Evacuation Planning. Link

# August 17, 2016: SDSU developing software to improve wildfire evacuations. Link