Minimum vehicle slip path planning for automated driving using a direct element method

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In the UK the number of fatal accidents on rural roads is approximately double the one on urban. Statistics also showed that rural accidents decreased less than on other road types. The narrow width and complex geometry are less forgiving to drivers’ mistakes. A potential remedy for this problem is automated driving (AD). Decisive in AD is the ability to plan safe and feasible paths that can match any road geometry. Different methods have been proposed for this purpose. Most of them either utilise forward simulation of a vehicle dynamics model or describe mathematically a reference path and then track it. In this paper, a new method belonging to the latter category is presented. The method is based on a direct element approach and, as will be shown and discussed, is unique because it’s the first one that includes a prediction of the vehicle slip angle and designs paths minimising their maximum value. Furthermore, it is very flexible because it can plan paths under arbitrary boundary and intermediate conditions and has a low computational burden. Simulations illustrate its performance and comparisons to other known methods highlight its strengths.

Bibliographical note

Article in press. full citation details will be updated once available.


  • path planning
  • automated driving
  • minimum slip angle
  • direct element method

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