Link Travel Time Estimation in Double-Queue-Based Traffic Models
Double queue concept has gained its popularity in dynamic user equilibrium (DUE) modeling because it can properly model real traffic dynamics. While directly solving such double-queue-based DUE problems is extremely challenging, an approximation scheme called first-order approximation was proposed to simplify the link travel time estimation of DUE problems in a recent study without evaluating its properties and performance. This paper focuses on directly investigating the First-In-First-Out property and the performance of the first-order approximation in link travel time estimation by designing and modeling dynamic network loading (DNL) on single-line stretch networks. After model formulation, we analyze the First-In-First-Out (FIFO) property of the first-order approximation. Then a series of numerical experiments is conducted to demonstrate the FIFO property of the first-order approximation, and to compare its performance with those using the second-order approximation, a point queue model, and the cumulative inflow and exit flow curves. The numerical results show that the first-order approximation does not guarantee FIFO and also suggest that the second-order approximation is recommended especially when the link exit flow is increasing. The study provides guidance for further study on proposing new methods to better estimate link travel times.
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