Conference Proceeding

Replicating Test Track Protocols in a Simulator; What Needs to be Matched?

  • Timothy Brown (University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA)
  • Dawn Marshall (University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA)
  • Neil Lerner (Westat)
  • John Gaspar (University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA)


Many different experimental methods are used to evaluate driving performance as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of various vehicle safety systems but the results often do not match between different experimental approaches. This study aimed to determine the extent to which results can be matched between a driving simulator and a test track when carefully designed studies are used to replicate findings. This study collected simulator data on the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS) at the University of Iowa to replicate findings concerning Forward-Crash-Warning interface effectiveness at the Vehicle Research and Test Center (VRTC), East Liberty Ohio. The simulator used a virtual replica of the test track as well as a road course. Event choreography and scanning behavior were compared. Results indicate that results from the simulator were similar to those obtained on the test track. This indicates simulators can replicate findings for the test track and are a valuable tool. Careful experimental design is required to match the event choreography to insure an appropriate comparison. An exact match of the driving environment was not needed for this interface evaluation to obtain comparable results. The extent to which matching motion cues was not evaluated and may prove challenging in simulators without motion systems.

How to Cite:

Brown, T. & Marshall, D. & Lerner, N. & Gaspar, J., (2017) “Replicating Test Track Protocols in a Simulator; What Needs to be Matched?”, Driving Assessment Conference 9(2017), 235-241. doi:

Rights: Copyright © 2017 the author(s)

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Published on
28 Jun 2017
Peer Reviewed