Characterizing Older Driver Behavior for Traffic Simulation and Emissions Modeling

Principal Investigator: Dr. Lisa Aultman-Hall (UVM Transportation Research Center)
Funding Agency: New England University Transportation Center at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (NEUTC at MIT)

Project Summary

The objective of this research is to characterize the second-by-second driver behavior of older drivers in order to accurately account for the lead-vehicle dynamics of the aging population in traffic simulation and emission models. Field data on actual routes will be collected using in-vehicle instrumentation from 20 volunteer drivers, residents of the Wake Robin Life Care Retirement Community in Shelburne, VT. The research will explore trends and differences in second-by-second speed and acceleration/deceleration data while drivers are not constrained by a vehicle in front of them. Vehicles will be instrumented with a device to read speed from the vehicle engine, a GPS receiver, two accelerometers, and a forward-facing video camera. Seconds of driving with acceleration or upgrades are expected to have the highest emissions as found in other studies. The goal here is to consider the pattern of vehicle driving style that are unique to older drivers. This project is conducted as part of the activities of the UVM Transportation Air Quality Lab.

Conference Presentations: