This paper proposes a mathematical programming approach for empty container management. Since directional imbalances in trade activities result in a surplus or shortage of empty containers in ports and depots, their management can be thought of as a min cost flow problem whose arcs represent services routes, inventory links and decisions concerning the time and place to lease containers from external sources. We adopt an hourly time-step in a dynamic network and, although this time-period generates large-size instances, the two implemented algorithms show a good computational efficiency. A possible case study of the Mediterranean basin is proposed and results are presented with a graphical representation, providing a useful support to decision-makers in the field.

An operational model for empty container management

OLIVO, ALESSANDRO;ZUDDAS, PAOLA;DI FRANCESCO, MASSIMO;MANCA, ANTONIO
2005-01-01

Abstract

This paper proposes a mathematical programming approach for empty container management. Since directional imbalances in trade activities result in a surplus or shortage of empty containers in ports and depots, their management can be thought of as a min cost flow problem whose arcs represent services routes, inventory links and decisions concerning the time and place to lease containers from external sources. We adopt an hourly time-step in a dynamic network and, although this time-period generates large-size instances, the two implemented algorithms show a good computational efficiency. A possible case study of the Mediterranean basin is proposed and results are presented with a graphical representation, providing a useful support to decision-makers in the field.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/103377
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