Influence of Autonomous Vehicles on Car-Following Behavior of Human Drivers

Yalda Rahmati, Mohammadreza Khajeh Hosseini, Alireza Talebpour, Benjamin Swain, Christopher Nelson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Despite numerous studies on general human–robot interactions, in the context of transportation, automated vehicle (AV)– human driver interaction is not a well-studied subject. These vehicles have fundamentally different decision-making logic compared with human drivers and the driving interactions between AVs and humans can potentially change traffic flow dynamics. Accordingly, through an experimental study, this paper investigates whether there is a difference between human–human and human–AV interactions on the road. This study focuses on car-following behavior and conducted several car-following experiments utilizing Texas A&M University’s automated Chevy Bolt. Utilizing NGSIM US-101 dataset, two scenarios for a platoon of three vehicles were considered. For both scenarios, the leader of the platoon follows a series of speed profiles extracted from the NGSIM dataset. The second vehicle in the platoon can be either another human-driven vehicle (scenario A) or an AV (scenario B). Data is collected from the third vehicle in the platoon to characterize the changes in driving behavior when following an AV. A data-driven and a model-based approach were used to identify possible changes in driving behavior from scenario A to scenario B. The findings suggested there is a statistically significant difference between human drivers’ behavior in these two scenarios and human drivers felt more comfortable following the AV. Simulation results also revealed the importance of capturing these changes in human behavior in microscopic simulation models of mixed driving environments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTransportation Research Record
PublisherSAGE Publishing
Number of pages13
StatePublished - Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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