Flexible ship loading problem with transfer vehicle assignment and scheduling

Çağatay Iris*, Jonas Christensen, Dario Pacino, Stefan Røpke

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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    This paper presents the flexible containership loading problem for seaport container terminals. The integrated management of loading operations, planning of the transport vehicles to use and their scheduling is what we define as the Flexible Ship Loading Problem (FSLP). The flexibility comes from a cooperative agreement between the terminal operator and the liner shipping company, specifying that the terminal has the right to decide which specific container to load for each slot obeying the class-based stowage plan received from the liner. We formulate a mathematical model for the problem. Then we present various modelling enhancements and a mathematical model to obtain strong lower bounds. We also propose a heuristic algorithm to solve the problem. It is shown that enhancements improve the performance of formulation significantly, and the heuristic efficiently generates high-quality solutions. Results also point out that substantial cost savings can be achieved by integrating the ship loading operations.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalTransportation Research. Part B: Methodological
    Pages (from-to)113-134
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


    • Container terminals
    • Mega vessels
    • Ship loading
    • Shipping lines and port collaboration
    • Stowage planning
    • Transport operations in yard


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