Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Major Professor

Yu Zhang, Ph.D.

Co-Major Professor

Jian John Lu, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Abdul Pinjari, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Michael Weng, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Lakshminarayan Rajaram, Ph.D.


Access Density, Access Weight, Calibration, CORSIM, Speed Standard Deviation, TSIS


Traffic speed is generally considered a core issue in roadway safety. Previous studies show that faster travel is not necessarily associated with an increased risk of being involved in a crash. When vehicles travel at the same speed in the same direction (even high speeds, as on interstates), they are not passing one another and cannot collide as long as they maintain the same speed. Conversely, the frequency of crashes increases when vehicles are traveling at different rates of speed. There is no doubt that the greater speed variation is, the greater the number of interactions among vehicles is, resulting in higher crash potential. This research tries to identify all major factors that are associated with speed variation on multilane highways, including roadway access density, which is considered to be the most obvious contributing factor. In addition, other factors are considered for this purpose, such as configuration of speed limits, characteristics of traffic volume, geometrics of roadways, driver behavior, environmental factors, etc. A microscopic traffic simulation method based on TSIS (Traffic Software Integrated System) is used to develop mathematical models to quantify the impacts of all possible

factors on speed variation.