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Self-organising Motorway Traffic Management

Self-organising Motorway Traffic Management

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An essay for the 2011 Undergraduate Awards Competition by Niall O'Hara. Originally submitted for Final Year Project at Trinity College, Dublin, with lecturer Prof. Vinny Cahill in the category of Computer Sciences & Information Studies
An essay for the 2011 Undergraduate Awards Competition by Niall O'Hara. Originally submitted for Final Year Project at Trinity College, Dublin, with lecturer Prof. Vinny Cahill in the category of Computer Sciences & Information Studies

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Published by: Undergraduate Awards on Aug 29, 2012
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12/28/2013

 
 Self-organising Motorway TrafficManagement
 
 
Abstract
Traffic congestion is a major problem across the world - it costs businesses and individuals interms of time and money, and also impacts on the environment. A solution to the problem,which would provide accurate and cost effective journey times, has long been sought. But whatif computer-controlled vehicles, which could sense their environment and communicate with eachother, could solve the problem? Such intelligent transport systems are currently a large area of research.This research proposes a novel motorway traffic management system, providing a time and thuscost-effective answer to road congestion through insights gained from the study of self organisa-tion and their application to autonomous vehicles.As part of this study, a state-of-the-art review was carried out on current and previous works inthe areas of self organisation and motorway traffic management. Two algorithms are presentedthat allow autonomous vehicles to self organise themselves in such a manner that it mitigatesthe effects of a reduction in capacity on a motorway.The algorithms were developed and evaluated within VISSIM, a microscopic traffic flow sim-ulator, through the creation of a self-organising driver model. The evaluation was carried outagainst a human driver model, Weidemann 99, at increasing levels of traffic volumes on a simu-lated scenario where a three lane motorway merges into two lanes.Results from the evaluation indicated that a self-organising traffic management system has thepotential to reduce delay times, improve travel times and hence increase efficiency in situationswhere congestion occurs when compared against the human driver model.Finally miniature robots were designed and built to serve as a cost-effective platform to inves-tigate the practicalities of implementing the algorithms, and to physically study self-organiseddriving. Insights gained from this physical implementation will serve to improve future research.This report documents each stage of the progress throughout the project.i
 
Contents
Abstract iList of Figures vChapter 1 Introduction 1
1.1 Motivation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11.2 Objectives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21.3 Contribution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.4 Road map . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.5 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Chapter 2 Background and Related Work 5
2.1 Trac Congestion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52.1.1 Consequences of Motorway Trac Congestion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52.1.2 Economic Theories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62.2 Intelligent Transportation Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62.2.1 Existing Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72.2.2 Autonomous Vehicles: Driverless Car . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72.2.3 Platooning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82.2.4 Automated Highways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92.2.5 Slot Based Driving . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92.3 Self Organisation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92.3.1 Examples of Self Organisation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102.4 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Chapter 3 Algorithm Design 11
3.1 Lane Closure Scenario . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113.2 Vehicle Requirements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123.3 Virtual Grids . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123.4 Self-organising Algorithm . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123.4.1 Ideal self organised formation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133.4.2 Scenarios . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13ii

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