Optimising offsets and bandwidths in vehicle traffic networks

Robert Burdett, Bradley Casey, Kai Helge Becker


Bandwidths and offsets are important components in vehicle traffic control strategies. This article proposes new methods for quantifying and selecting them. Bandwidth is the amount of green time available for vehicles to travel through adjacent intersections without the requirement to stop at the second traffic light. The offset is the difference between the starting-time of ``green'' periods at two adjacent intersections, along a given route. The core ideas in this article were developed during the 2013 Maths and Industry Study Group in Brisbane, Australia. Analytical expressions for computing bandwidth, as a function of offset, are developed. An optimisation model, for selecting offsets across an arterial, is proposed. Arterial roads were focussed upon, as bandwidth and offset have a greater impact on these types of road as opposed to a full traffic network. A generic optimisation-simulation approach is also proposed to refine an initial starting solution, according to a specified metric. A metric that reflects the number of stops, and the distance between stops, is proposed to explicitly reduce the dissatisfaction of road users, and to implicitly reduce fuel consumption and emissions. Conceptually the optimisation-simulation approach is superior as it handles real-life complexities and is a global optimisation approach. The models and equations in this article can be used in road planning and traffic control.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21914/anziamj.v55i0.8917

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