Optimization based controlled evacuation

Alahi Kawsar L., Abdul Ghani N., KAMIL A. A., Mustafa A.

Journal of Intelligent Transportation Systems: Technology, Planning, and Operations, vol.23, no.5, pp.477-498, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier


Using the conservation of mass concept, a novel controlled flow methodology based on a linear programing problem is developed for computing the optimal flow rates for a multi-exit evacuation network. In an emergency situation, the controlled flow design is able to track the values of the walkway density, the number of occupants in nodes and thus assures that the flow from adjacent sources to the source walkways is at their maximum level. Using the DTSP hall room of Universiti Sains Malaysia as a multi-exit network, a simulation of the flow shows that the source walkways are blocked when there is an uncontrolled flow. Hence, very few occupants can make their way into the intermediate walkways and exits. For the controlled flow, the values of occupant density in the source and intermediate walkways gradually approach the critical density, ensuring a maximum flow. The developed methodology is useful for the architects and disaster management authorities who are concerned with the evacuation of building facilities and can be used as a paradigm for future studies.