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The representation and implementation of time-dependent inundation in large-scale microscopic evacuation simulations

Lämmel, Gregor; Grether, Dominik; Nagel, Kai

Multi-agent simulation has increasingly been used for transportation simulation in recent years. With current techniques, it is possible to simulate systems consisting of several million agents. Such multi-agent simulations have been applied to whole cities and even large regions. In this paper it is demonstrated how to adapt an existing multi-agent transportation simulation framework to large-scale pedestrian evacuation simulation. The underlying flow model simulates the traffic-based on a simple queue model where only free speed, bottleneck capacities, and space constraints are taken into account. The queue simulation, albeit simple, captures the most important aspects of evacuations such as the congestion effects of bottlenecks and the time needed to evacuate the endangered area. In the case of an evacuation simulation the network has time-dependent attributes. For instance, large-scale inundations or conflagrations do not cover all the endangered area at once. These time-dependent attributes are modeled as network change events. Network change events are modifying link parameters at predefined points in time. The simulation framework is demonstrated through a case study for the Indonesian city of Padang, which faces a high risk of being inundated by a tsunami.
Published in: Transportation Research, Part C: Emerging Technologies, 10.1016/j.trc.2009.04.020, Elsevier