Energy Impact of Automated Vehicles used as Sparse Traffic Controllers

Benjamin Seibold
Temple University

It is a popular notion that vehicle automation has the potential to contribute to more energy efficient traffic flow, because the automated vehicles themselves can drive more efficiently (harmonized speed, platooning, etc.). In this talk we focus on a more ambitious paradigm, namely to use a few of the vehicles with automation capabilities (that are on the roadway anyways) to actively control traffic flow, with the distinct objective to steer the overall flow behavior into a more efficient regime. Specifically, we focus on controls that rely on only a few automated vehicles (employing as simple technologies as adaptive cruise control systems), and it is the non-automated vehicles that become more energy efficient. We establish fundamental estimates and bounds what energy gains can be expected, both for contemporary combustion-engine-dominated traffic, as well as future electric-vehicle-dominated fleet compositions.

Presentation (PDF File)

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