My research trajectory has focused on different topics, ranging from mobility planning or freeway traffic management to port operations. My objective has always been to extend our conceptual knowledge of transportation systems and reach some guidelines to allow practitioners for better designs which eventually have a positive effect on society.
The results of my research activities can be summarized in:
- 20 papers in indexed journals (15 as 1st autor; 11 in 1st quartile Impact Factor journals)
- 1 Monograph (published in Springer Tracts on Transportation and Traffic)
- 2 book collaborations / chapters (one edited by OECD publishing)
- 38 publications in conference proceedings
- Lead researcher in three projects belonging to the Spanish National Research Plan (Ministry of Science and Innovation)
- 16 research contracts with private companies and public institutions
- 3 PhD thesis & 38 Master thesis directed
- Over 60 participations in research conferences, seminars, courses and invited talks both, at national and international lelvels
- and 24 media collaborations
I am especially proud of the awards I have received in relation to my research activities, including:
- 2009-20. 7 research awards and 6 honorable mentions / finalist positions for research works under F. Soriguera direction.
- 2014. Finalist in the Young Researcher of the Year 2014 Award. International Transport Forum (OECD). One of my papers was shortlisted as one of the four best research works on transport policy formulation and implementation by a researcher under 35 years of age who has undertaken his research in a member country.
- 2013. Outstanding Ph.D. Thesis Award. Best Ph.D. Thesis of the course 2010-2011. Civil Engineering category. UPC – BarcelonaTech.
- 2012. II Young Researcher Award. X Congreso de Ingeniería del Transporte. Best paper presented by researchers under 35 years old.
- 2011. VIII Abertis Prize Winner. “Highway travel time estimation with data fusion”. Best 2010 Doctoral Thesis in the field of transportation infrastructure management
- 2010. Top 25 Hottest Articles. My paper “Travel time measurement in closed toll highways” was ranked 11 in the top 25 most downloaded papers for the journal in the period October – December 2010 (www.sciencedirect.com).
I am also reviewer for the Spanish National Research Commission, for the ETH Zurich Research Commission, for the Swiss National Foundation (SNF) and for 5 high impact SCI journals: Computer-Aided Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, IEEE Transactions on ITS, Transportation Research – Part C, Journal of Intelligent Transportation and Transportation Science.
-Modeling mixed freeway traffic: Traditional and autonomous vehicles
Traffic management will be essential in order to improve traffic efficiency with the progressive introduction of AVs in traffic streams. Decisions taken by AVs, individually (e.g. route, lane selection, traveling speed, car-following headway, spacing, lane changing and merging thresholds,…) may imply a selfish individual behavior that will not improve the current situation and will not lead to the global efficiency of the system. In this context, this context, the present research topic explores the possibilities for collaborative driving, leading to a better management of this mixed freeway traffic.
- Sala, M. and F. Soriguera. (2020). “Lane-changing and freeway capacity: A Bayesian inference stochastic model”, Computer‐Aided Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, Vol. 35 (7), pp. 719-733.
- Sala, M., F. Soriguera, K. Huillca and V. Vilaplana (2019). “Measuring traffic lane-changing by converting video into space–time still images“. Computer-Aided Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, Vol. 34 (6), pp. 488-505.
- Martínez-Díaz, M., F. Soriguera and I. Pérez. (2019). “Autonomous driving: A bird´s eye view“. IET Intelligent Transport Systems, Vol. 13 (4), pp. 563 – 579.
- Martínez-Díaz, M., F. Soriguera and I. Pérez. (2018). “Technology: A necessary but not sufficient condition for future personal mobility“. Sustainability, Vol. 10 (11), 4141.
-Modeling public vehicle-sharing systems
Public vehicle sharing systems will be, in the near future, the required complement to collective transportation in order to achieve an efficient and sustainable urban mobility. One-way sharing systems consist on a vehicle fleet which is made available to the public to be used for any trip within a service region. Currently, vehicle sharing implementations suffer from operational problems and funding difficulties. Furthermore, past experiences in free-floating vehicle sharing (especially in the case of bike or scooter sharing systems) have yielded situations with an over-supply of vehicles, clogging streets and sidewalks and leaving behind a poor perception of the sustainability and efficiency of vehicle sharing systems. The present research topic aims to model public vehicle sharing systems (independently of the particular type of vehicle: cars, bicycles, scooters) in order to achieve efficient design and operation guidelines that ensure the sustainability of such systems.
- Soriguera, F. and E. Jiménez. (2020) “A continuous approximation model for the optimal design of public bike-sharing systems”. Sustainable Cities and Society, Vol. 52, 101826.
-Active traffic management strategies on metropolitan freeways
Active Traffic Management (ATM) strategies are generally regarded as an approach for dynamically controlling traffic demand and available capacity of transportation facilities. A combination of real-time and predictive operational strategies are used in order to control traffic. This should lead to a more efficient freeway performance.
With the exception of ramp metering strategies, with a long tradition in the US, the implementation of ATM strategies, mainly in Europe, is quite recent. These include dynamic speed limits or dynamic lane management, being the former more popular.
The claimed benefits of these strategies include a reduction of traffic related emissions and accident rates, as well as congestion relief (e.g. reduction of stop&go episodes or capacity increase). However, there is a lack of scientific analysis and verification of such effects. This means that the effectiveness of many ATM policies is still a controversial issue.
My research on this topic tries to fill this gap, regarding dynamic speed limit (DSL) strategies and managed lanes on metropolitan freeways. I have developed analytical tools and simulation environments in order to assess the benefits of these ATM strategies. In addition, I recognize the need for an empirical assessment. That’s why I am working in a DSL experiment in order to construct a comprehensive traffic database that will allow researchers to test and validate their theories. In order to achieve this goal, I have the valuable collaboration of the Catalan traffic administration (SCT-Servei Català del Trànsit). We are working together in the construction of a highway lab in a corridor accessing the city of Barcelona. This freeway is intensively equipped with surveillance technologies and an automated DSL system is already installed.
- Soriguera, F. I. Martínez, M. Sala and M. Menéndez. (2017) “Effects of Low Speed Limits on Freeway Traffic Flow”. Transportation Research Part C, Vol. 77, pp. 257-274.
- Plana, J., F. Soriguera and A. Hegyi (2016) “Effects of Dynamic Speed Limits on a Dutch Freeway”, Paper # 16-2648, Proceedings of the TRB 95th Annual Meeting. Washington, D. C. January 10-14th, 2016.
- Soriguera, F., I. Martínez and M. Menéndez (2015) “Experimenting with Dynamic Speed Limits on Freeways”, Paper # 15-2729, Proceedings of the TRB 94th Annual Meeting. Washington, D. C. January 11-15th, 2015.
- Soriguera, F. and M. Sala (2014). “Freeway lab: testing dynamic speed limits”, Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences 160, pp. 35–44. ISSN 1877-0428. DOI 10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.12.114.
- Torné, J.M., F. Soriguera and N. Geroliminis (2014) “On the consistency of freeway macroscopic merging models”. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board 2422, 34-41.
- Soriguera, F., J.M. Torné and D. Rosas. (2013) “Assessment of Dynamic Speed Limit Management on Metropolitan Freeways”. Journal of Intelligent Transportation Systems : Technology, Planning, and Operations. 17(1), 78-90.
-Freeway travel time estimation from multiple data sources
Travel time is the drivers’ most appreciated information and the key indicator of highway management performance. Despite this relevance, the interest of highway operators in providing travel time information is quite recent. In the last century, magnetic loop detectors played a role in measuring traffic volume and also, with less accuracy, average speed and vehicle length. New traffic monitoring technologies (intelligent cameras, GPS or cell phone tracking, Bluetooth identification, new MeMS detectors, etc.) have appeared in recent decades which permit considerable improvement in travel time data gathering. Some of the new technologies are cheap (Bluetooth), others are not (cameras); but in any case most of the main highways are still monitored by magnetic loop detectors. It makes sense to use their basic information and enrich it, when needed, with new data sources.
My research has developed a new and simple approach for the short term prediction of freeway travel times, based on the fusion of direct and indirect travel time measurements. These are obtained from a wide variety of sources. Bayes’ analysis makes it possible to obtain fused estimates that are more reliable than the original inputs, overcoming some drawbacks of travel time estimations based on only data sources. The developed methodology adds value and obtains the maximum (in terms of travel time estimation) of the available data, without falling in the recurrent and costly request of additional data needs.
The empirical testing of the algorithms in the AP-7 toll highway near Barcelona proves that it is possible to develop an accurate real-time travel time information system on closed toll highways with the existing surveillance equipment.
- Soriguera, F. (2014) “On the Value of Highway Travel Time Information Systems”. Transportation Research Part A, vol. 70, pp. 294–310.
- Soriguera, F. and F. Robusté. (2013) “Freeway Travel-Time Information: Design and Real-Time Performance Using Spot-Speed Methods”. IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, 14(2), 731-742.
- Soriguera, F. (2012) “Deriving Traffic Flow Patterns from Historical Data”. ASCE – Journal of Transportation Engineering, 138(12), 1430-1441.
- Soriguera, F. and F. Robusté. (2011) “Requiem for freeway travel time estimation methods based on blind speed interpolations between point measurements”. IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, 12(1), 291-297.
- Soriguera, F. and F. Robusté. (2011) “Estimation of traffic stream space-mean speed from time aggregations of double loop detector data”. Transportation Research Part C, 19(1), 115-129.
- Soriguera, F., F. Robusté et al. (2010) “Improving reliability on surface transport networks”. OECD/JTRC, OECD publishing, Paris. ISBN 978-92-82-10241-1.
- Soriguera, F., D. Rosas and F. Robusté. (2010) “Travel time measurement in closed toll highways”. Transportation Research Part B, 44(10), 1242–1267. Was ranked 11 in the Top 25 Hottest Articles for the journal in the period October – December 2010 (www.sciencedirect.com).
- Soriguera, F. and F. Robusté. (2010) “Highway travel time accurate measurement and short-term prediction using multiple data sources”. Transportmetrica, 7(1), 85-109.
–Optimization of operations at port container terminals
The main objective was to look for operative strategies leading to a better performance and capacity increase in port container terminals. Specifically my research focused on the optimization of the interconnection system (i.e. the movement of containers between landside/storage and storage/seaside) either using straddle carriers or terminal truck units. I developed job scheduling algorithms for the interconnection units, leading to an optimal level of centralization of terminal tasks. I also proposed a storage strategy accounting for the expected duration of stance of containers at the terminal. The performance of simplified versions of such strategies were analytically assessed using queuing theory. In addition we built a simulation model for a container terminal, and tested the realistic performance of algorithms using parameters measured at the Barcelona Container Terminal (TCB). Results showed that we were able to increase significantly the number of operations per unit time in this terminal.
- Soriguera, F., D. Espinet and F. Robusté. (2007) “Optimization of the internal transport cycle in a marine container terminal managed by straddle carriers”. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board 2033, 21-30.
- Soriguera, F., F. Robusté, R. Juanola and A. López Pita. (2006) “Handling equipment optimization in container terminal of Port of Barcelona. Spain”. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 1963, 44-51.
Sustainable mobility planning
When starting my research trajectory I devoted my attention to the planning of urban mobility, especially for industrial estates. In these areas, mobility is limited to the private car option. This involves huge externalities and creates outcast minorities, deprived of public accessibility to job locations. My research was devoted to create some guidelines in order to design a sustainable and equitable mobility system for industrial states. These guidelines should be useful to practitioners when planning the transportation system for these areas, and would lead to a more sustainable and equitable mobility.
- Robuste, F., L. Thorson, M. Estrada, F. Soriguera and D. Cuscurita (2007) “Guia per l’elaboració de plans de mobilitat en polígons industrials” Beta Editions, Quadern del Pacte Industrial Collection – 5, ISBN 978-84-7091-426-3, 175 pages 21.2×29.7 cm. (in Catalan)