Resilient operation of transportation networks via variable speed limits

A. Yasin Yazicioglu, Mardavij Roozbehani, Munther A. Dahleh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Scopus citations


In this paper, we investigate the use of variable speed limits for resilient operation of transportation networks, which are modeled as dynamical flow networks under local routing decisions. In such systems, some external inflow is injected to the so-called origin nodes of the network. The total inflow arriving at each node is routed to its operational outgoing links based on their current particle densities. The density on each link has first order dynamics driven by the difference of its incoming and outgoing flows. A link irreversibly fails if it reaches its jam density. Such failures may propagate in the network and cause a systemic failure. We show that larger link capacities do not necessarily help in preventing systemic failures under local routing. Accordingly, we propose the use of variable speed limits to operate the links below their capacities, when necessary, to compensate for the lack of global information and coordination in routing decisions. Our main result shows that systemic failures under feasible external inflows can always be averted through a proper selection of speed limits if the routing decisions are sufficiently responsive to local congestion and the network is initially uncongested. This is an attractive feature as it is much easier in practice to adjust the speed limits than to build more physical capacity or to alter routing decisions that are determined by social behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2017 American Control Conference, ACC 2017
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781509059928
StatePublished - Jun 29 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event2017 American Control Conference, ACC 2017 - Seattle, United States
Duration: May 24 2017May 26 2017

Publication series

NameProceedings of the American Control Conference
ISSN (Print)0743-1619


Other2017 American Control Conference, ACC 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 American Automatic Control Council (AACC).


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