Traffic wave, also known as stop wave or traffic shockwave, is travelling disturbance in the distribution of vehicles on the highways. In this paper, we attempt to study this problem using a simulation approach. Largely inspired by an interesting observation from ant chain movement, we explore how such a vivid pattern can be mathematically modeled and whether the similar way of behavior is helpful for dealing traffic wave issue in our highway systems. Therefore, a decentralized fast-adaptive clustering approach is proposed jointly with considerations for traffic optimization. To validate the proposed approach and to better understand its mechanism in lifting traffic flow, simulation study is carried out using real-world traffic data. Results have revealed the applicability and effectiveness of the proposed approach and have also indicated that both road configuration and traffic demand affect the effectiveness of the proposed model.

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