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Using a Path-Fitting Algorithm to Analyze the Racing Techniques of a Skilled Driver

[+] Author Affiliations
Juan Pablo Samper Mejia, Paul A. Theodosis, J. Christian Gerdes

Stanford University, Stanford, CA

Paper No. DSCC2013-4106, pp. V003T47A006; 7 pages
  • ASME 2013 Dynamic Systems and Control Conference
  • Volume 3: Nonlinear Estimation and Control; Optimization and Optimal Control; Piezoelectric Actuation and Nanoscale Control; Robotics and Manipulators; Sensing; System Identification (Estimation for Automotive Applications, Modeling, Therapeutic Control in Bio-Systems); Variable Structure/Sliding-Mode Control; Vehicles and Human Robotics; Vehicle Dynamics and Control; Vehicle Path Planning and Collision Avoidance; Vibrational and Mechanical Systems; Wind Energy Systems and Control
  • Palo Alto, California, USA, October 21–23, 2013
  • Conference Sponsors: Dynamic Systems and Control Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5614-7
  • Copyright © 2013 by ASME


Racecar drivers are skilled at tracking a path, avoiding accidents, and controlling their vehicles at the limits of handling. Better understanding of how a skilled driver selects and drives a racing line, could potentially lead to a new technique for obstacle avoidance. To investigate this, the characteristics of a racecar driver’s line must be captured mathematically. This paper describes an algorithm for fitting a path to the GPS data of a driver’s racing line. A family of path primitives composed of straights, clothoids, and constant radius arcs are used to describe the racing line. The fitted paths provide a method for analyzing racing lines and the different techniques used by skilled drivers to navigate the track.

Copyright © 2013 by ASME
Topics: Algorithms , Fittings



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