The Visualisation Laboratory is equipped with a driving simulator which is a tool for providing researchers with a realistic driving interface and large field of vision.
The simulator is equipped with features including three 16:9 LCD screens, an automatic gearbox, a handbrake and real steering wheel with force-feedback. The driving simulator has been used for research in traffic safety, driving behaviour, traffic flow modelling (e.g. lane changing behaviour), and decision making particularly where real experiment is not feasible due to costing and/or safety issues.
To increase the realism of the surrounding traffic, the driving simulator can be integrated with a traffic simulation such as Vissim and Aimsun to study lane changing, gap acceptance, and overtaking behaviour in a more practical environment. It is because integrating both the driving simulator and the traffic simulation allow the behaviour of the surrounding vehicles to more closely resemble the real world. This integration also allows researchers to consider interaction with human driver and other type of transport modes such as pedestrians and bicycles on the roads.