Analysis of interrupted traffic flow by finite difference methods

Panos G. Michalopoulos, Dimitrios E. Beskos, Jaw Kuan Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Three numerical techniques for macroscopic analysis of traffic dynamics at signalized links (isolated or coordinated) are presented. The techniques are based on finite differences in time and space and assist in implementing continuum models at real situations. The general methodology presented allows treatment of any arrival and departure pattern, inclusion of sinks or sources, employment of any desired equilibrium flow-density relationship and arbitrary specified initial conditions. Implementation of the proposed method to a signalized intersection and a coordinated link suggests satisfactory agreement with field data and notable agreement with analytical results, respectively. Comparisons made under progressively realistic assumptions demonstrate substantial improvements in model performance as the complexity of the assumptions increases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)409-421
Number of pages13
JournalTransportation Research Part B
Issue number4-5
StatePublished - 1984

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
support for this study was provided by NSF (project No. CEE-8210189).


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