Enhanced Intelligent Driver Model to Access the Impact of Driving Strategies on Traffic Capacity

18 Dec 2009  ·  Arne Kesting, Martin Treiber, Dirk Helbing ·

With an increasing number of vehicles equipped with adaptive cruise control (ACC), the impact of such vehicles on the collective dynamics of traffic flow becomes relevant. By means of simulation, we investigate the influence of variable percentages of ACC vehicles on traffic flow characteristics. For simulating the ACC vehicles, we propose a new car-following model that also serves as basis of an ACC implementation in real cars. The model is based on the Intelligent Driver Model [Treiber et al., Physical Review E 62, 1805 (2000)] and inherits its intuitive behavioural parameters: desired velocity, acceleration, comfortable deceleration, and desired minimum time headway. It eliminates, however, the sometimes unrealistic behaviour of the Intelligent Driver Model in cut-in situations with ensuing small gaps that regularly are caused by lane changes of other vehicles in dense or congested traffic. We simulate the influence of different ACC strategies on the maximum capacity before breakdown, and the (dynamic) bottleneck capacity after breakdown. With a suitable strategy, we find sensitivities of the order of 0.3, i.e., 1% more ACC vehicles will lead to an increase of the capacities by about 0.3%. This sensitivity multiplies when considering travel times at actual breakdowns.

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