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Evaluating Connected and Automated Vehicles in Co-Simulation Environment of Traffic Microsimulation and Vehicle Dynamics...

by Yunli Shao, Paul H Chambon, Adian S Cook, Chieh Wang, Dean Deter
Publication Type
Conference Paper
Book Title
International Conference on Transportation and Development 2023: Transportation Safety and Emerging Technologies
Publication Date
Page Numbers
207 to 217
Publisher Location
Virginia, United States of America
Conference Name
ASCE International Conference on Transportation and Development (ICTD)
Conference Location
Austin, Texas, United States of America
Conference Sponsor
Conference Date

Connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) have the potential to improve many aspects of the current transportation systems such as safety, mobility, and energy efficiency. In order to evaluate the benefits and impacts of a CAV, the CAV control algorithm is typically implemented on vehicles simulated in a traffic microsimulation environment. However, traffic microsimulation usually lacks detailed vehicle and powertrain dynamics, making it challenging to fully understand how a CAV control algorithm will perform and respond on an actual vehicle. Whether the same benefits measured in the simulation will also be observed in real-world remains an open question. One potential approach to fill in this gap is to conduct a co-simulation of traffic microsimulation with detailed vehicle and powertrain dynamics models, often developed in MATLAB Simulink. However, current microsimulation tools such as VISSIM and SUMO do not have a ready-to-use interface for co-simulation with vehicle dynamics and Simulink. Also, even if such an interface exists, it will be tool-specific, making it challenging to shift from one tool to another or test CAV controls in different tools. There are needs for tool-agnostic co-simulation as different microsimulation tools have their pros and cons, and researchers often need to use different tools based on the purposes of the simulation, project needs, and applications. In this work, Flexible Interface for X-in-the-loop Simulation (FIXS) is developed that can support the co-simulation of microsimulation, CAV control algorithm, and vehicle dynamics model in Simulink. Enabled by the FIXS, the benefit and performance of a CAV control algorithm can be better understood with the consideration of vehicle responses and dynamics. The connection to VISSIM and SUMO is handled internally by the interface, and users can easily switch tools by changing a configuration file. The co-simulation capability is demonstrated for a VISSIM eco-approach and departure CAV scenario and a SUMO cooperative merging scenario for both a passenger CAV and a class 8 heavy-duty connected and automated trucks.