Traffic management has become a vital issue in cities around the world as the number of vehicles and the need for transportation grows. Traffic congestion degrades the available infrastructure by reducing the motorway throughput and therefore the expensive motorway infrastructure is underutilized. Beside the time losses, traffic congestion may increase the possibility of incidents and fuel consumption alike. Polluted air and consequently health problems should also be added to the list.
On the other hand, the repercussion of traffic congestion on the individuals should not be underestimated. The unpredictability of traffic trends as well as the stress and noise will give rise to changes the social behavior and diminish the quality of life.
Efficient, safe and less polluting transportation will call for some effective traffic surveillance and control strategies which are able to tackle these problem in microscopic or macroscopic level. Cooperative driving or in particular platooning is an advanced alternative to achieve passenger safety and at the same time satisfying some criteria for efficient use of infrastructures.
For successful platooning, reliable wireless communication and on-board vehicle sensors are inevitable. On the other hand, in macroscopic level, accurate traffic models and effective control strategies to avoid or decrease traffic jam are the main issues.
Advanced control techniques implemented on available actuators such as traffic lights or variable speed limits give the chance to reduce the possibility of traffic congestions or incidents. In addition, with the help of surveillance system, accidents can be detected in time and suitable control measures can be taken to overcome or decrease its effect.