So why is it so often true that when we’re waiting for a bus, we wait and wait, and then two or even three all come at the same time?

Bus bunching, or platooning, is a major cause of congestion and delays passenger times. As yet, there is no sophisticated analysis of this.

Paul Antonin Dublanche, a masters student in applied mathematics for engineering at Paul Sabatier University in France, has arrived at SMART to work in this area.

Working under the guidance of SMART researcher, Dr Bobby Du, Paul arrived this month on a three-month internship to develop a model to try and understand why, and when bus bunching occurs.

“We are trying to work out a solution,” he said.

“When we know when and where this happens, we can understand why.”

Paul heard about SMART from a colleague who had also completed an internship at the facility, and was attracted by the practical nature of the work.

“Last year, I was studying fundamental mathematics, but that was really abstract,” he said.

“I am now focusing on applied mathematics, using my skills in writing code.”