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Access Type

Open Access

Document Type


Degree Program

Civil Engineering

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

Year Degree Awarded

January 2007

Month Degree Awarded



Traffic Simulation, Vehicle Dynamics, Car Following Models, Engine Model


The state-of-the-art traffic simulation packages model traffic on a microscopic level. This includes the use of several sets of models that dictate how traffic moves within a transportation network. These models include car-following, gap acceptance, lane-changing and route choice models. The aim of this thesis is to improve the treatment of vehicle dynamics in traffic simulation and, as a result, special attention was paid to car-following models. These models were highlighted because they are largely responsible for capturing a vehicle’s motion and its relevant dynamics in traffic simulation. In order to improve the treatment of vehicle dynamics in traffic simulation, a Dynamic-Interactive-Vehicle (DIV) model was developed.

This vehicle model is calibrated with the use of essential vehicle performance specifications that are responsible for the movement of a vehicle in a transportation network. After the calibration process the model is able to accept three inputs from a driver – gas pedal, brake pedal and steering wheel positions. The model then outputs the corresponding longitudinal and latitudinal values which represent the movement of a vehicle along a roadway. The vehicle model will also account for most of the dominant external forces that affect an automobile’s performance along a roadway. This thesis will validate the proposed model by comparing its output from a few performance tests with the performance test results of three passenger cars. The DIV model was validated by comparing the acceleration, braking and steering performance test results of three passenger cars with the output from the DIV model upon performing similar tests. It was found that the DIV model was successful at replicating the two-dimensional vehicle motion.


First Advisor

Daiheng Ni