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CE354: Transportation Engineering

Module 3: Traffic Engineering Principles

Traffic characteristics; components of traffic stream:
flow-speed-Density, measurement and analysis, q-
k-v relationships, design hourly volume, concept of
EPCU, capacity and level of service.
Parking studies and accident studies.
Design of intersections, at grade intersections,
channelized and rotary.
Introduction to grade separated intersections,
cloverleaf, trumpet, flyovers.

CSRK Prasad
Traffic Engineering
Traffic engineering is that phase of
engineering, which deals with planning and
geometric design of streets, highways,
abutting lands, and with traffic operation
thereon, as their use is related to he safe,
convenient and economic transportation of
persons and goods (Institute of Traffic
Engineers, USA)
Scope of Traffic Engineering
Traffic Characteristics
Traffic studies and Analysis
Traffic operation-control and regulation
Planning and analysis
Geometric design
Administration and management
Traffic Characteristics
Road User Characteristics
Physical characteristics
Mental characteristics
Psychological factors, and
Environmental factors
Roaduser Characteristics
Traffic Characteristics

Vehicular Characteristics
Static Characteristics
Dimensions, weight & maximum turning angle
Dynamic Characteristics
Speed, acceleration & braking characteristics
Vehicular Characteristics
Categories of Traffic Flow
Uninterrupted Flow:
Flow on facilities that have no fixed elements, such as
traffic signals, external to the traffic stream, that cause
interruptions to traffic flow
Vehicles in uninterrupted flow conditions are spaced so to
provide ample time and distance for a following vehicle to
perceive and react to decelerate safely without colliding
with a leading vehicle that suddenly decelerate and stop.
Traffic flow conditions are the result of interactions among
vehicles in the traffic stream and between the vehicles and
the geometric characteristics of the roadway system
Freeways (Expressways), Multilane highways, two-lane
Flow Facilities
Categories of Traffic Flow
Interrupted Flow:
Flow on facilities that have fixed elements causing
periodic interruptions to traffic flow
Flow regulated by an external means: vehicle-vehicle
interactions and vehicle-roadway interactions play a
secondary role in defining the traffic flow
Constant stopping and restarting of traffic streams
Flow occurs in platoons
Fixed elements: traffic signals, stop signs, & other types
of controls
Signalised streets, unsignalised streets with stop signs,
transit, etc.
Interrupted Flow Facility
Traffic Flow Characteristics
Macroscopic Flow Characteristics: Flow in an
aggregate sense
Flow, q (vehicles/hr)
Speed, v (kmph)
Density, k (vehicles/lane km)

q = kv
Vehicles/hr = (km/hr)(vehicles/km)
Flow Rate

Number of vehicles passing a point during a

specified period of time
q = N/T
q = flow rate, vehicles/min or vehicles/hr
N = number of vehicles
T = observation period
Flow Rate - Example
Vehicle Type 15 minute count
2 wheelers 381
Autorickshaws 156
Cars / Vans 322
Buses 24
Trucks 42
Total number of vehicles 925
Flow Rate, vehicles / hour 925x60/15 = 3700
Time Mean Speed (TMS) (vt)
Average of all vehicles passing a point over a specified
time period
Space Mean Speed (SMS) (vs) (also known as
harmonic mean speed)
Rate of movement of a traffic stream within a given
section of road
Average speed of all vehicles occupying a given
section of roadway over a specific time period
Speed vs. Density
Density vs. Flow
Speed vs. Flow
Fundamental Diagram of Traffic Flow
Max. Flow Rate
Traffic Flow Characteristics
Microscopic Flow Characteristics: response of
each individual vehicle in a disaggregate
Headway, h (seconds) & gap, g (seconds)
Spacing, s (meters) & Clearance, c (meters)
Time Space Diagram
Traffic Flow Characteristics
Khanna, S.K., Justo C.E.G. and A. Veeraraghavan, 2013.
Highway Engineering. Nem Chand & Brothers, Roorkee
Kadiyali L.R., Traffic Engineering and Transportation Planning,
Khanna Publishers, New Delhi

20-12-2017 CSRK Prasad 30

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