Brake light cellular automaton model with advanced randomization for traffic breakdown

Traffic breakdown is one of the most important empirical phenomena in traffic flow theory. Unfortunately, it cannot be simulated by many traffic flow models. In order to clarify its mechanism, the new brake light cellular automaton model has been proposed. Comparing with previous brake light models, three different aspects have been considered: (i) drivers tend to take large decelerations if the time gap is smaller than the safe time gap and the leading vehicle’s brake light is on; (ii) the brake light rule is set according to the reality; (iii) the randomization rule is put forward before the acceleration rule to weaken the impact of brake light on driving behaviors. Analyses show that the new model can explain the mechanism of traffic breakdown and the failures of other brake light models. Simulations confirm that all empirical features of traffic breakdown are successfully reproduced. At last, brake light models are calibrated and validated by the I-80 empirical data provided by NGSIM. Results show that the performance of the new model is the best and models in the three-phase theory are not necessarily better than models in the fundamental diagram approach and vice versa, at least for the brake light models.


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  • Accession Number: 01535022
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 17 2014 3:10PM