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Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control for Vehicle Following During Lane Changes

This paper addresses the longitudinal vehicle behavior before and during lane changes. Hereby, it is desired that the lane-changing vehicle simultaneously follows its predecessors on the lanes before and after the lane change. Specifically, the lane changing vehicle should keep a safe distance to the rearmost predecessor vehicle, while maintaining a small inter-vehicle spacing and supporting driving comfort. To this end, the paper develops an extension of cooperative adaptive cruise control (CACC). Instead of following a single vehicle as in the classical realization of CACC, it is proposed to follow a virtual vehicle that is evaluated based on distance measurements and communicated state information from the predecessor vehicles. A simulation study demonstrates the practicability of the proposed method.