W. Narzt, U. Wilflingseder, G. Pomberger, D. Kolb, H. Hörtner: Self-Organizing Congestion Evasion Strategies using Ant-Based Pheromones, ITS World Congress Journal Special Issue in IET Intelligent Transport Systems, ISSN (Print) 1751-956X, Published by Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), Vol. 4, No. 1, Pages: 93 - 102, 2010, doi:10.1049/iet-its.2009.0022


Social insects perform complex, self-organising tasks within a collective by using pheromone-based indirect communication (swarm intelligence). Inspired by these potentials of nature, this concept is possibly also a paradigm for controlling traffic, for collectively recognising, disintegrating and avoiding traffic congestion without central control instances. Vehicles equipped with location and communication technology act like individual insects and virtually deposit digital pheromones on the road indicating the intense of traffic and enabling other vehicles to indirectly benefit from the trail. This study investigates a technical implementation of swarm intelligence applied to the traffic system and evaluates different evasion strategies for vehicles. Using a micro-simulation environment capable of simulating real city networks, various traffic experiments empirically prove the hypothesis of a self-organising effect concerning the traffic flow in pheromone-based systems.