A Cooperative Intelligent Transportation System for Traffic Light Regulation Based on Mobile Devices as Floating Car Data (FCD)

Vittorio Astarita, Vincenzo Pasquale Giofrè, Alessandro Vitale


This paper carries on an analysis in a simulation framework to establish numerically what would happen at the launch of the system and when the subscriber base increases. It shows that after around 35% of subscribers would have joined, the system would operate more democratically and very efficiently in traffic regulation by estimating the position of all vehicles in the network using the subscriber base as a sample for the whole population of cars. An algorithm is proposed for the optimization of an isolated traffic light and for an isolated corridor. Micro-simulation has been used to make confrontations and estimation, in the analyzed scenarios, between the proposed system (using active mobile phone as sensors) and fixed time signal settings based on standard Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) procedure.

Numerical results are obtained that assess the proposed system from the point of view of both subscriber advantages and overall network travel time reduction depending on different subscriber rates in the driver population. Results have shown a great convenience of the system for low traffic flows and intersections not perfectly regulated. The proposed optimization algorithm can be extended to a whole network.

This paper presents and analyzes a new Cooperative Intelligent Transportation System based on a simple concept: the use of information coming from the network of internet connected mobile devices to regulate traffic light systems. The new idea explored in this paper is a traffic light system with green cycles actuated by the information coming from mobile phone vehicle probes that would allow:

1)       regulating traffic lights or offering information to drivers taking advantage of Floating Car Data (FCD);

2)       convincing drivers to accept this system as beneficial and adopt it promptly and voluntarily becoming part of a successful cooperative system.

The idea presented in this paper is conceptually very simple: drivers interested in the service would install a mobile phone application on mobile devices with GNSS capabilities (such as GPS or Galileo system). This would allow the traffic light regulation system to know the position of subscribers and regulate traffic lights according to this. The fast and successful launch of the system would be guaranteed by the fact that, in the launch phase, the first drivers using the system would be given green priority on other drivers.


Traffic theory; Adaptive traffic signals; Floating Car Data; ITS.

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