Identifying and Analyzing Stop and Go Traffic based on Asymmetric Theory of Driving Behavior in Acceleration and Deceleration

Document Type: Research Paper


1 Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering, Imam Khomeini International University, Ghazvin, Iran

2 Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

3 MSc. Student, Department of Civil Engineering, Azad Islamic University, South Tehran Branch, Tehran, Iran


Stop and go traffic that leads to oscillate traffic flow frequently is observed on congestion flow. Unexpected reasons such as lane – changing maneuvers, lower speeds of leader vehicle and moving bottleneck cause stop and go traffic and amplifying delay and environment impacts. Stop and go traffic exactly can’t be modeled by traffic models, and also car following models based on kinematic flow theory can’t be implied correct perception of stop and go traffic. Based on asymmetric microscopic theory and trajectory data of NGSIM, traffic flow can be classified into five phases according to speed and movement of the vehicle: Free flow, acceleration and deceleration, stationary and coasting phases. Analyzing stop and go traffic based on asymmetric theory of acceleration and deceleration phase will result to classify them into three cases: generation, growth and dissipation of traffic waves. Analyzing of traffic oscillation implies that stop-and-go traffic is relatively small and can’t be propagated upstream unless the following traffic is also near D-curve; while the effect on lane changes are greater, and can propagate even the following traffic is not near the D-curve. In this paper, using time window in trajectory data clarify relation between the total number of lane changes and stop-and-go waves for congestion traffic. Analyzing net lane changes inside the searching window for incoming and outgoing lane changes about growth and dissipation of traffic waves indicate how characteristics of stop-and-go waves are intimately related to driver’s asymmetric behavior of acceleration and deceleration. The comparison result on the growth and dissipation indicated that under the same net lane changes, growth wave case occupy the regions in fundamental diagram, flow – density diagram, deceleration curve, and dissipation wave case occupy the regions of flow – density, acceleration curve.


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