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Recently, many efforts have been made to develop more efficient Inter-Vehicle Communication (IVC) protocols for on-demand route planning according to observed traffic congestion or incidents, as well as for safety applications. Because practical experiments are often not feasible, simulation of network protocol behavior in Vehicular Ad Hoc Network (VANET) scenarios is strongly demanded for evaluating the applicability of developed network protocols. In this work, we discuss the need for bidirectional coupling of network simulation and road traffic microsimulation for evaluating IVC protocols. As the selection of a mobility model influences the outcome of simulations to a great extent, the use of a representative model is necessary for producing meaningful evaluation results. Based on these observations, we developed the hybrid simulation framework Veins (Vehicles in Network Simulation), composed of the network simulator OMNeT++ and the road traffic simulator SUMO. In a proof-of-concept study, we demonstrate its advantages and the need for bidirectionally coupled simulation based on the evaluation of two protocols for incident warning over VANETs. With our developed methodology, we can advance the state-of-the-art in performance evaluation of IVC and provide means to evaluate developed protocols more accurately.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2011