Optimized Departure Model of Fixed-Lane Destination-Based Platoon
Although platooning promises substantial benefits to traffic flow, fuel consumption and safety, limitations such as market penetration and unstructured lane-changes and differences in driving behavior in mixed traffic prevent the realization of the full potential of platooning. Undoubtedly, autonomous vehicles and conventional vehicles are likely to share roads in the near future. Yet research points out platooning in mixed traffic at less than 40% market penetration rates may result in very minimal benefits or may even be detrimental to traffic flow.
In light of these developments a model proposed by the authors presented a novel approach to homogeneous platooning on dedicated lanes on a ring road network by employing fixed-lane, destination-based platooning strategy which utilizes differential lane speeds and constrained lane changes to ensure steady repetitive flow of traffic through evenly timed departures of batches of platoons across network. The model showed significant improvements in capacity, average velocities and travel times although the batch departure protocol was rudimentary.
This study further optimizes the batch departure protocol by employing a collision avoidance metering algorithm that ensures platoon departures at the earliest time possible with the guarantee of zero collision. The model proposed in this study is simulated on the Plexe framework for vehicle platoons and results show significant improvement in throughput over the previous model. Other indices of evaluation such as travel times, average velocity, fuel consumption and emissions are improved.
Keywords - CACC Platoons, Dedicated Lanes, Homogeneous Platooning, Destination-based Platoon Formation, Optimized Departures.