On the assessment of the dynamic platoon and information flow topology on mixed traffic flow under connected environment

Weijie Yu, Xuedong Hua, Dong Ngoduy, Wei Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


It has been well documented that the mixed traffic flow of human-driven vehicles (HDVs) and connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) causes an unsound communication environment and weakens the beneficial effect of CAVs. However, the communication heterogeneity in the mixed traffic, which leads to incomplete information flow topology (IFT) and further affects the processes of vehicle control and platoon operation, did not receive its deserved attention. In contrast to previous research related to the IFT and platoons in static size, this study introduced the multi-anticipation and dynamic platoons into a more complex mixture of CAVs and HDVs and jointly considered the mode transition and driver uncertainties, e.g., estimation error and driving compliance. Specifically, we proposed multi-class generic controls to represent the basic longitudinal maneuver for each type of vehicle and developed customized car-following dynamics for each controller. In order to better adapt to the communication heterogeneity in the mixed traffic, we defined a novel controller for CAVs, namely mixed AV-CAV vehicle (MACV) controller and developed the corresponding control algorithm, namely AV-CAV integrated control (ACIC) with multi-source information from both sensors system and inter-vehicle communication. Besides, another important point worth considering in mixed traffic is the spatial distribution of CAVs in platoons. As such, three platoon policies, i.e., the cross policy, the continuum policy, and the random policy, were investigated. To our best knowledge, this is a new attempt to discuss the impact of platoon policies on mixed traffic, with a combination of different IFTs. Finally, multiple traffic flow characteristics, covering robustness, efficiency, safety, and emission, were assessed by calculating their corresponding surrogate measures. Results showed that the proposal of MACV controller and ACIC was expected to efficiently prevent the deleterious degradation from the CAV controller to AV controller and construct a more stable transition for changes in vehicle controls. Furthermore, a high proportion of communicable vehicles could significantly reduce the heterogeneity of mixed traffic and improve traffic flow characteristics. Besides, this study demonstrated the outstanding performance of multi-anticipative IFTs compared to the single-anticipative IFT and revealed the advantage of cross policy in traffic robustness and safety. These findings can help provide feasible solutions for IFTs, platoon operation, and vehicle control in the mixed traffic flow and identify their respective benefits in terms of traffic flow characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104265
Number of pages31
JournalTransportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023


  • Connected and automated vehicles
  • Information flow topology
  • Mixed traffic flow
  • Platoon operation
  • Vehicle control

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