Document Type


Date of Award

Fall 1-31-2014

Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering - (M.S.)


Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

MengChu Zhou

Second Advisor

Yun Q. Shi

Third Advisor

Mingming Yan


This thesis addresses the optimal control problem of timed continuous Petri nets. The theory of Model Predictive Control (MPC) is first discussed. Then continuous Petri nets (PN) are introduced as a powerful tool for modelling, simulation and analysis of discrete event/continuous systems. Their useful capabilities are studied. Finally, a macroscopic model based on PN as a tool for designing control laws that improve the behavior of traffic systems is given. The goal is to find an approach that minimizes the total delay of cars in an intersection by computing the switching sequence of the traffic lights. The simulation results show that by using an MPC strategy to handle the variability of traffic conditions, the total delay is dramatically reduced.