This study uses a nonlinear stability analysis technique to investigate traffic flow propagation stability. Specifically, the capability of second-order macroscopic vehicle traffic flow models to reproduce stable and unstable traffic flow behaviors observed in real traffic was discussed. A wavefront expansion technique was used to derive the nonlinear traffic flow stability criterion. The stability criterion for various existing second-order macroscopic models was calculated and compared with stability conditions that were obtained through linearlized and local approximation techniques. The newly derived results in this paper are in agreement with what has been reported in the literature in most cases. However, the nonlinear stability analysis in this paper gives more precise stability information along the perturbation propagation than previous approximate linear stability approaches. The study also found that the downstream-moving propagation, which travels faster than traffic in second-order models and represents a major deficiency for these models, decays quickly. The stability criterion also was illustrated by numerical simulation using a computational software package for conservation laws that employs this wavefront expansion technique. The numerical results confirm the theoretical results for a Payne-Whitman model.


  • English

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00960761
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jul 11 2003 12:00AM