Traffic Simulation Modelling of Rural Roads and Driver Assistance Systems

Jan Lundgren
Haris N. Koutsopoulos

Microscopic traffic simulation has proven to be a useful tool for analysis of varioustraffic systems. This thesis consider microscopic traffic simulation of rural roads andthe use of traffic simulation for evaluation of driver assistance systems.

A traffic simulation modelling framework for rural roads, the Rural Traffic Simulator(RuTSim), is developed. RuTSim is designed for simulation of traffic on singlecarriageway two-lane rural roads and on rural roads with separated oncoming trafficlanes. The simulated traffic may be interrupted by vehicles entering and leaving themodelled road at intersections or roundabouts.

The RuTSim model is applied for analysis of rural road design alternatives.Quality-of-service effects of three alternatives for oncoming lane separation of anexisting Swedish two-lane road are analysed. In another model application, RuTSimis used to simulate traffic on a Dutch two-lane rural road. This application illustratesthat the high level of model detail of traffic micro-simulation may call for use of differentmodelling assumptions regarding driver behaviour for different applications,e. g. for simulation of traffic in different cultural regions.

The use of traffic simulation for studies of driver assistance systems facilitateimpact analyses already at early stages of the system development. New and additionalrequirements are however then placed on the traffic simulation model. It isnecessary to model both the system functionality of the considered driver assistancesystem and the driver behaviour in system equipped vehicles. Such requirements canbe analysed using RuTSim.

In this thesis, requirements on a traffic simulation model to be used for analysisof road safety effects of driver assistance systems are formulated and investigatedusing RuTSim. RuTSim is also applied for analyses of centre line rumble stripson two-lane roads, of an overtaking assistant and of adaptive cruise control. Thesestudies establish that the assumptions made regarding driver behaviour are crucialfor traffic simulation based analyses of driver assistance systems.

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