Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

A merging model for motorway traffic\ud

By Jiao Wang


Motorway merging has long been regarded as a major source of conflicts and congestion on motorways. Traditional studies of merging behaviour are based on gap acceptance models developed mainly for urban intersections, which tend to oversimplify the very complex dynamic interactive merging behaviour involved.\ud It is believed that this research represents the first comprehensive investigation and modelling of dynamic merging interactions at motorway on-ramps. Emphasis has been given to improving the modelling of merging behaviour and in particular to capture the cooperation between the merging and motorway traffic. This research has developed a feasible integrated microscopic simulation framework to model the interactions among traffic in motorway merging sections. This has been achieved by developing an integrated model (MergeSim) consisting of two sub-models working in tandem: a car-following and a merging model.\ud By assuming different reaction times for different driver states (alert, non-alert and close-following), the new car-following model is shown to be able to capture traffic breakdown, hysteresis, shockwave propagations and close-following situations.\ud The merging model is developed to capture both the acceleration and gap acceptance behaviour of the merging traffic, and the cooperative behaviour of the motorway traffic. The merging model is composed of several sub models: for the traffic in the motorway nearside lane, there is a cooperation model to simulate the cooperative lane-changing and courtesy yielding behaviour and the interactions with the merging traffic; for the merging traffic in the acceleration lane, there are models such as acceleration model, gap selection model, gap acceptance model and a merge model.\ud Sensitivity tests have shown that the integrated model can reasonably replicate all relevant behaviour of individual drivers in merging areas such as normal carfollowing,\ud close-following, cooperative lane-changing, courtesy yielding and gap acceptance. The sensitivity tests on the different merging lengths showed that increased length might reduce merging failures (i. e. the occurrence that the merging driver fails to move into the motorway before reaching the end of the acceleration lane). It can be explained that more merging traffic can successfully take the following gaps with increased merging lengths, which has implications for the geometric configuration of the acceleration lane.\ud The study also established a general calibration and validation framework designed for real-world applications in highway networks using the most readily available traffic surveillance data, the loop detector data. Currently no commonly agreed bench-marking procedure exists (Brockfeld et al., 2005), and this framework has the advantage that the concept and the proposed methodology are suitable for general application to other micro-simulation models using detector data sets.\ud In conclusion, the integrated simulation model (MergeSim) can reliably be used as a tool for further studies and investigations into the effectiveness of techniques related to motorway merging operations

Publisher: Institute for Transport Studies (Leeds)
Year: 2006
OAI identifier:

Suggested articles


  1. (2005a) A car-following model for motorway traffic, Transportation Research Record, doi
  2. (2005b) A simulation model for motorway merging behaviour, doi
  3. (1981). A behavioral car-following model for computer simulation, doi
  4. (2002). A behavioral theory of multi-lane traffic flow. Part I: Long homogeneous freeway sections, doi
  5. (2004). A calibration procedure for microscopic traffic simulation. doi
  6. (2001). A Car-following theory for multiphase vehicular traffic flow, doi
  7. (1998). A further generalisation of Tanner's formula, doi
  8. (2002). A game theoretic analysis of merging-giveway interaction: a joint estimation model, doi
  9. (2005). A general framework for the calibration and validation of car-following models along an uninterrupted open highway,
  10. (1998). A generalised stability criterion for motorway traffic, doi
  11. (1999). A mathematical theory of traffic hysteresis, doi
  12. (1995). A Microscopic modelling of traffic flow: weakness and potential developments,
  13. (2002). A Microscopic simulation model of merging operation at motorway on-Ramps,
  14. (1996). A microscopic traffic simulator for evaluation of dynamic traffic management systems, doi
  15. (2004). A microsimulation model of a congested freeway using VISSIM, doi
  16. (1986). A model for the structure of lane-changing decisions, doi
  17. (1993). A Motorway Simulation Model, Leaflet LF2061,
  18. (1998). A Novel nonlinear car-following model, Chaos, doi
  19. (1999). A simulation study of truck passenger car equivalents (PCE) on basic freeway sections, doi
  20. (2001). a) Design manual for road and bridges. doi
  21. (2001). An analysis of Gipps's car-following model of highway traffic, doi
  22. (1974). An evaluation of highway intersection gap acceptance metering system,
  23. (1992). An investigation of flow breakdown and merge capacity on motorways,
  24. (1953). An operational analysis of traffic dynamics, doi
  25. (2002). Analysis of weather impacts on traffic flow in Metropolitan Washington DC,
  26. (2001). b) Design manual for road and bridges. doi
  27. (2005). Calibration and Validation of Microscopic Traffic Flow Models, 84`h TRB annual meeting, doi
  28. (1959). Car following theory of steady state traffic flow, doi
  29. (1988). Car-following in an urban network: simulation and experiments.
  30. (1997). Car-following model of multispecies systems of road traffic, doi
  31. (2003). Car-Following models for motorway traffic, doi
  32. (1998). Car-following under congested conditions empirical findings, doi
  33. (1999). Car-following: a historical review, doi
  34. (1988). CARSIM: Car-following model for simulation of traffic in normal and stop-and-go conditions,
  35. (1983). Close-following on the motorway, doi
  36. (2003). Comparison and calibration of FRESIM and INTEGRATION steady-state car-following behaviour, doi
  37. (1997). Comparison of the 1994 highway capacity manual's ramp analysis procedures and the FRESIM model,
  38. (2000). Comparison of VISSIM and CORSIM traffic simulation models on a congested network, doi
  39. (2000). Continuum approach to car-following models, Physical Review E, doi
  40. (1986). Development and applications of traffic simulation models at the Karlsruhe Institut Fur Verkehrwesen,
  41. (1968). Driver and vehicle response in freeway deceleration waves, doi
  42. (1989). Driver behaviour model of merging,
  43. (1998). Driver perceptionbrake response in stopping sight distance situations, doi
  44. (1971). Drivers' brake reaction time,
  45. (1995). Dynamical model of congestion and numerical simulation, doi
  46. (1961). Economic forecasts and policy, doi
  47. (1993). Effects of merging lane length on the merging behaviour at expressway on-ramps,
  48. (1972). Entwicklung einer messmethode uber den bewegungsablauf des kolonnenverrkehrs, Universitat (TH)
  49. (1999). Evaluation of the General Motors based carfollowing models and a proposed fuzzy inference model, doi
  50. (1996). Experimental properties and characteristics of traffic jams. doi
  51. (2001). Full velocity difference model for a car following theory, Physical Review E, doi
  52. (1997). Fundamentals of Transportation and Traffic Operations,
  53. (1976). Further evaluation of single and two regime traffic flow models.
  54. (1967). Gap acceptance characteristics for ramp-freeway surveillance and control.
  55. (1981). Gap acceptance: myth and reality.
  56. (2004). Guidelines for calibration of microsimulation models: framework and application, doi
  57. (1999). HUTSIM- urban traffic simulation and control model: principles and applications,
  58. (1974). hysteresis phenomenon in traffic flow,
  59. (2003). Integrated driving behaviour modelling,
  60. (1990). Merging behaviour at roadworks, PTRC 18`h Summer Annual Meeting,
  61. (2004). Methodological notes on the calibration and validation of microscopic traffic simulation models,
  62. (1996). Microscopic traffic simulations of road network using high-performance computer, doi
  63. (1998). Modelling driver behaviour on motorways,
  64. (1999). Modelling drivers' acceleration and lane changing behaviour,
  65. (1995). Modelling lane utilisation on British dual-carriageway roads: effects on lane-changing,
  66. (2002). Modelling lane-changing and merging in microscopic traffic simulation, doi
  67. (2002). Modelling of freeway ramp merging process observed during traffic congestion. doi
  68. (2002). Motorway driver behaviour: studies on car following, doi
  69. (1967). Non integer car following models,
  70. (1961). Nonlinear follow the leader models of traffic flow, doi
  71. (1992). Numerical Recipes in C, Cambridge
  72. (1955). On kinematic wave's rl A theory of traffic flow on long crowded roads, doi
  73. (1963). Perceptual and field factors causing lateral displacement,
  74. (2003). Practical procedure for calibrating microscopic traffic simulation models, Transportation Research Record 1852, doi
  75. (2001). Predictability: Some thoughts on Modelling, doi
  76. (2003). Prediction of minor stream delays at a limited priority freeway merge, doi
  77. (1995). Probabilistic nature of breakdown at freeway merge junctions, Transportation Research Record 1484,
  78. (2005). Ring car-following models,
  79. (1976). Rural speed flow relations,
  80. (2000). Scoot real-time adaptive control in a CORSIM simulation environment, doi
  81. (2000). Simulation modeling and analysis, doi
  82. (1959). Simulation of bottlenecks in single lane traffic flow,
  83. (2001). Simulation of traffic in large road networks, doi
  84. (1959). Single lane traffic theory and experiment,
  85. (1999). Singlevehicle data of highway traffic: a statistical analysis, Physical Review E(60), doi
  86. (1998). Some remarks on macroscopic traffic flow modelling, doi
  87. (1996). The parallelisation of AIMSUN2 microscopic traffic simulator for ITS applications,
  88. (2002). The performance of uncontrolled merges using a limited priority process, doi
  89. (2001). The prediction of road traffic noise in urban areas,
  90. (2003). The validation of a microscopic simulation model: a methodological case study, doi
  91. (1958). Traffic dynamics: studies in car following, doi
  92. (1990). Traffic flow fundamentals,
  93. (2004). Traffic. simulation model calibration framework using aggregate data, 5'h Triennial Symposium on Transportation Analysis, doi
  94. (2003). Transport statistics bulletin- road traffic statistics: 2002, National Statistics, doi
  95. (1999). Transportation and traffic engineering handbook,
  96. (1999). Useful estimation procedures for critical gaps, doi
  97. (2003). VISSIM user manual,
  98. (1994). When shockwaves hit traffic,

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.