Microscopic Fuel Consumption and Emission Modeling

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Virginia Tech

Mathematical models to predict vehicle fuel consumption and emission metrics are presented in this thesis. Vehicle fuel consumption and emissions are complex functions to be approximated in practice due to numerous variables affecting their outcome. Vehicle energy and emissions are particularly sensitive to changes in vehicle state variables such as speed and acceleration, ambient conditions such as temperature, and driver control inputs such as acceleration pedal position and gear shift speeds, among others.

Recent empirical studies have produced large amounts of data concerning vehicle fuel consumption and emissions rates and offer a wealth of information to transportation planners. Unfortunately, unless simple relationships are found between fuel consumption and vehicle emission metrics, their application in microscopic traffic and macroscopic planning models becomes prohibitive computationally. This thesis describes the development of microscopic energy and emission models using nonlinear multiple regression and neural network techniques to approximate vehicle fuel consumption and emissions field data. The energy and emission models described in this thesis utilized data collected by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The data include microscopic fuel consumption and emission measurements (CO, HC, and NOx) for eight light duty vehicles as a function of vehicle speed and acceleration. The thesis describes modeling processes and the tradeoffs between model accuracy and computational efficiency. Model verification results are included for two vehicle driving cycles. The models presented estimate vehicle fuel consumption within 2.5% of their actual measured values. Vehicle emissions errors fall in the range of 3-33% with correlation coefficients ranging between 0.94 and 0.99.

Future transportation planning studies could also make use of the modeling approaches presented in the thesis. The models developed in this study have been incorporated into a microscopic traffic simulation tool called INTEGRATION to further demonstrate their application and relevance to traffic engineering studies. Two sample Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) application results are included. In the case studies, it was found that vehicle fuel consumption and emissions are more sensitive to the level of vehicle acceleration than to the vehicle speed. Also, the study shows signalization techniques can reduce fuel consumption and emissions significantly, while incident management techniques do not affect the energy and emissions rates notably.

ITS evaluation, Microscopic modeling, Transportation, Fuel consumption and emission modeling