PDFormer: Propagation Delay-aware Dynamic Long-range Transformer for Traffic Flow Prediction

by   Jiawei Jiang, et al.
Beihang University

As a core technology of Intelligent Transportation System, traffic flow prediction has a wide range of applications. The fundamental challenge in traffic flow prediction is to effectively model the complex spatial-temporal dependencies in traffic data. Spatial-temporal Graph Neural Network (GNN) models have emerged as one of the most promising methods to solve this problem. However, GNN-based models have three major limitations for traffic prediction: i) Most methods model spatial dependencies in a static manner, which limits the ability to learn dynamic urban traffic patterns; ii) Most methods only consider short-range spatial information and are unable to capture long-range spatial dependencies; iii) These methods ignore the fact that the propagation of traffic conditions between locations has a time delay in traffic systems. To this end, we propose a novel Propagation Delay-aware dynamic long-range transFormer, namely PDFormer, for accurate traffic flow prediction. Specifically, we design a spatial self-attention module to capture the dynamic spatial dependencies. Then, two graph masking matrices are introduced to highlight spatial dependencies from short- and long-range views. Moreover, a traffic delay-aware feature transformation module is proposed to empower PDFormer with the capability of explicitly modeling the time delay of spatial information propagation. Extensive experimental results on six real-world public traffic datasets show that our method can not only achieve state-of-the-art performance but also exhibit competitive computational efficiency. Moreover, we visualize the learned spatial-temporal attention map to make our model highly interpretable.


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Code Repositories


[AAAI2023] A PyTorch implementation of PDFormer: Propagation Delay-aware Dynamic Long-range Transformer for Traffic Flow Prediction.

view repo

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