Optimizing container retrieval operation at a port container terminal
Executive Committee for the Interdisciplinary Program in Transportation
Doctor of Philosophy
Bladikas, Athanassios K.
Chien, I-Jy Steven
Daniel, Janice Rhoda
Das, Sanchoy K.
In the presence of major challenges, where ports are striving to improve their operation and stay competitive in the global market, the issue of port efficiency, particularly the intelligent management of straddle carriers is investigated in this study. A new approach is presented that optimizes container handling equipment operation and is beneficial for the terminal operator in terms of improving productivity, providing faster service and reducing operating cost, Also, the solution provides acceptable service for truckers, The operational strategies presented are able to assess the operation from the truckers' and terminal operators' perspective.
The research is structured into four different scenarios that use an assignment logic and scheduling methodology to describe the continuous time dependable assignment process of straddle carriers to trucks. In doing so it provides the solution to the question that this dissertation poses. The assignment models used in an attempt to answer the research question are stated as follows:
The concept of a planning period is introduced for models where the Hungarian Algorithm and the Heuristic with Integer Enumeration are used. The planning period is defined as a time interval within which one can find the optimal solution to the straddle assignment problem. The assumption that by introducing a planning period and thus taking advantage of known truck-container pairs provides better allocation of straddle carriers to trucks is investigated and the answers to questions that this dissertation addresses are presented. An analysis is presented that utilizes the knowledge of the truck arrival rate to determine the optimal straddle carrier fleet size and the duration of the planning period. The results can be used by port terminal management to develop an optimal straddle carrier deployment strategy and planning period that will minimize the total cost of operation.
The framework is designed to answer questions of interest to port terminal management, and to investigate the trade-off between the cost of operation and the service provided to trucks. The analysis presents guidelines for pricing strategy if an appointment system is implemented.
njit-etd2009-002 (147 pages ~ 6,939 KB pdf)
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Created August 12, 2010