Comparison of Various Methods for the Calculation of the Distance Potential Field
The distance from a given position toward one or more destinations, exits, and way points is an important input variable in most models of pedestrian dynamics. Except for special cases without obstacles in a concave scenario—i.e. each position is visible from any other—the calculation of these distances is a non-trivial task. This is not a big problem as long as the model only demands the distances to be stored in a Static Floor Field (or Potential Field), which never changes throughout the whole simulation. Then a pre-calculation once before the simulation starts is sufficient. But if one wants to allow changes of the geometry during a simulation run—imagine doors or the blocking of a corridor due to some hazard—in the Distance Potential Field, calculation time matters strongly. We give an overview over existing and new exact and approximate methods to calculate a potential field, analytical investigations for their exactness, and tests of their computation speed. The advantages and drawbacks of the methods are discussed.
KeywordsGrid Cell Cellular Automaton Visibility Graph Speed Error Diagonal Motion
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