Classification of road surface conditions using vehicle positional dynamics

Timothy Tzen Vun Yap*, Hu Ng, Vik Tor Goh, Jeng Weng Seah

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The objective of this research is to collect and analyze road surface conditions in Malaysia and develop a classification model that can identify road surface conditions from the collected data. Data is collected through a mobile application that collects positional dynamics of vehicles on the road. Features considered include statistical measures such as minimum, maximum, standard deviation, median, average, skewness and kurtosis. Selection of the extracted features is performed using Ranker, Tabu search and Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) followed by classification using k-Nearest Neighborhood (k-NN) Random Forest (RF) and Support Vector Machine (SVM) with linear, Radial Basis Function (RBF) and polynomial kernels. The classification model that gave the highest accuracy is SVM (RBF) with a Correct Classification Rate (CCR) of 91.71%. Trailing closely was RF at 91.17%. Although not as accurate as SVM, the difference was negligible and its computational time was much lower than the former. In the feature selection process, features which provide positive contribution to the classification process were chosen and the best performances were produced by PSO with an average CCR of 89.88%. Tabu selected 11 features while PSO selected 13 features where the extra two features made a difference in the results. Ranker selected every single feature but has the lowest average CCR. This is attributed to a subset of features that were selected were ineffectively impeding the classification. The features and classification model employed were able to effectively classify road surface conditions from vehicle positional dynamics. Using only 3D positional readings of the vehicle and standard statistical measures, road surface conditions can be effectively identified for the prioritisation and facilitation of road maintenance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)501-507
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Classification
  • Feature selection
  • Machne learning
  • Road surface condition
  • Vehicle positional dynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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