Microscopic modelling of motorway diverges


Wall, G.T. and Hounsell, N.B. (2005) Microscopic modelling of motorway diverges. European Journal of Transportation Infrastructure Research, 5, (3), 139-158.

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Description/Abstract

This paper describes research looking at the design and operation of motorway diverges using the microscopic computer program SISTM. A diverge is the area of the motorway or other major road where drivers can leave the main carriageway. Low cost measures including the installation of alternative designs (such as the Ghost Island diverge) are assessed which could improve the operation, capacity and driving behaviour at the diverge. Following on from a recent study reviewing the diverging flow-region diagram (used in the UK as a tool to help traffic engineers select the most suitable diverge layout for a particular site with given downstream mainline and diverging flows), it was thought that microscopic models could offer potential benefits in confirming such a choice (particularly in border line situations) as driving behaviour aspects which affect capacity are not catered for in the diagram. SISTM has been used to evaluate existing and alternative diverge layouts in terms of their throughput as well as several other parameters. Modelled and observed data for the speed-flow relationship and the lane distribution of the mainline was compared and differences noted in order that the results could be interpreted correctly. A theoretical comparison of four layouts was carried out; Taper, Parallel, Taper lane drop and Ghost Island diverge. The link between throughput and lane distribution on the mainline before the diverge was also assessed as well as the importance of lane and exit choice. This research presents a summary of some of the key results from the modelling along with a discussion of their accuracy and application. Conclusions and recommendations are made with regard to design implications for diverges along with a list of modelling requirements (essential and desirable) for motorway diverges.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 1567-7141 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: microscopic modelling, throughput, lane distribution, motorway diverge, lane changing, car following and sistm
Subjects: T Technology > TE Highway engineering. Roads and pavements
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software
Divisions: University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Civil Engineering and the Environment
ePrint ID: 52679
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2008
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 18:35
Contact Email Address: grahamw@soton.ac.uk
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/52679

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