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With recent progress in vehicle autonomous driving and vehicular communication technologies, vehicle systems are developing towards fully connected and fully autonomous systems. This paper studies lane assignment strategies for connected autonomous vehicles in a highway scenario and their impact on the overall traffic efficiency and safety. The authors formulate a model of connected autonomous vehicles, which includes three features: traffic data available online, ultra-short reaction time and cooperative driving. Based on this model, they propose a novel lane change maneuver Politely Change Lane (PCL), which achieves the tradeoff between traffic safety and efficiency. Its effectiveness is validated and evaluated by extensive simulations. The performance shows that PCL improves both safety and efficiency of the overall traffic, especially with heavy traffic.
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