Friday Seminar - Lily Elefteriadou on Driver Behavior and Characteristics and Their Use in Traffic Modeling

Driver Experience @ Limeira

This week's Friday TRANSOC Seminar has Lily Elefteriadou, Professor and Director of the Transportation Research Center, School for Sustainable Infrastructure and the Environment, University of Florida, presenting “Driver Behavior and Characteristics and Their Use in Traffic Modeling.” 

Traffic modeling has frequently considered and accounted for variability in driver behavior and characteristics.  For example, microscopic traffic simulators have the capability to replicate vehicular movements (such as lane changing) considering driver characteristics to a significant level of detail.  Such traffic simulators can typically replicate traffic streams with several different driver types which are based on driver aggressiveness.  Vehicular movements (such as car following) are then determined based on the respective action of the particular driver type.  However, a limited amount of research has been reported to categorize driver types or to link particular driving actions with a set of driver types and their characteristics.  Car-following, lane changing, and gap acceptance algorithms have rarely been calibrated to match various driver types, and it is not always clear how micro-simulators incorporate driver behavior aspects into these algorithms.  This presentation will describe two approaches to collecting driver behavior and characteristics-related data so that they can be used to improve traffic micro-simulators.  The first approach is based on focus groups, while the second is based on in-vehicle field data collection with an instrumented vehicle.  The presentation will describe these two data collection approaches and will provide three example applications related to freeway merging, car-following, and arterial lane changing.