Using Connected Vehicle Data to Evaluate National Trip Trends


The National Household Travel Survey (NHTS), conducted by the Federal Highway Administration, has historically been used for documenting personal mobility trends. Current techniques using surveys to collect this data are labor-intensive and difficult to scale. Emerging connected vehicle (CV) data can provide an alternative data source to potentially provide a more scalable method to measure the temporal and spatial usage of passenger vehicles in near real-time. With an impending shift in the automobile industry towards alternative fuel vehicles (AFV), agile monitoring of trip trends is important to help guide state and national investments in AFV infrastructure. This study presents methodologies and visualizations summarizing observed trip characteristics using a sample of more than 500 billion CV records and nearly 1 billion CV trips for December 2022 in the United States. The analysis found very close agreement between trip lengths for internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEV) for CVs and those reported by the 2017 NHTS. Mean trip lengths and trip durations from CVs and NHTS for ICEVs are within 7.8% and 6.6% of each other. The 85th percentile comparison was similarly close, within 0.7% and 8.3%. A comparison of trip trends among states for ICEVs and AFVs as well as US census places and temporal trends for a selection of states, including Indiana, Texas, Wyoming, and California, is provided. The paper concludes that CV data is an important source to monitor trip characteristics across ICEVs and AFVs in near real-time, which will be particularly important to track during the anticipated change to AFVs.

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This publication pertains to:
Charging Stations
Publication Authors:
  • Jairaj Desai
  • Jijo K. Mathew
  • Justin Mahlberg
  • Howell Li
  • Darcy Bullock
It appeared in:
Peer-reviewed technical journal
connected vehicles; big data; trip trends; travel patterns