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The Aimsun Next Environment

Aimsun Next provides an extensible environment that offers all the tools that an analyst requires to support a transport modeling project: importing and editing a transport network; estimating and refining the transport demand; simulating transport movement in static macroscopic assignments or in dynamic mesoscopic, microscopic or hybrid simulation with route paths derived by simple "All or Nothing" methods to complex Dynamic User Equilibrium algorithms. Aimsun Next also provides outputs ranging from 3D animation to sophisticated transport analysis and contains tools to assist in managing a project with a base model and multiple, multi-faceted option tests. All functions are contained in one application operating on a single project document.

An Aimsun Project

A typical workflow for an Aimsun project might include:

Aimsun Next includes management tools to manage different scenarios in a model. For example a typical project might have a base model and a number of road design options to test, the project might then require that options are tested in different traffic demand scenarios and with different signal control systems. Aimsun Next also provides tools to allow multiple modelers to collaborate on a single project.


Aimsun Next can be extended by users using programming tools at five levels.

  • Aimsun Next scripting: Scripting is designed to automate operations that would otherwise be done manually with the GUI. Scripts can be used to import model data or to provide custom tools to automate editing.

  • Aimsun Next API: Using the Application Programming Interface, it is possible to program operations that act during the microsimulation by changing signal control timings,ITS management, or vehicle parameters. The API is typically used in simulating advanced ITS or customized signals.

  • Aimsun Next microSDK: The Microsimulator Software Development Kit is used to develop new microscopic simulation models (car following, lane changing, etc.) replacing those included in the Aimsun Next Microsimulator.

  • Aimsun Next External Agent Interface: It gives a simple method of connecting a driving simulator or CAV controller to an Aimsun Next microsimulation.

  • Aimsun Next V2X SDK: Designed to provide an extensible platform to include vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications using standard CAV protocols or custom-developed, role-specific protocols in an Aimsun Next microsimulation.

This manual covers all aspects of modeling with Aimsun Next. It contains sections which describe editing a model, running a model, managing a model, and adding more complex features to a model. It finishes with a section reviewing the theoretical foundations of Aimsun Next and the algorithms it contains.