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Bulk ship routing and scheduling

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Wednesday 15 February 2012, 16:00
LT2, Management School

Professor Kjetil Fagerholt
NTNU/Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Abstract: Scheduling shipments of bulk cargoes can be a complicated task, especially when multiple cargoes may be on board a vessel simultaneously. Most research on such bulk ship routing and scheduling problems has focused on solving a simplified version of the real problem, which I denote as the basic problem. However, practical problems often pose additional complexities and opportunities that are not considered in the basic problem. I will present a mathematical model for the basic bulk ship routing and scheduling problem and for three practical extensions to it: 1) flexible cargo quantities, 2) split cargoes, and 3) sailing speed optimization. Consolidating results from various sources I will show that, although the problems become harder to solve, significantly better solutions can be obtained by utilizing the additional flexibility provided by these extensions. Each of these extensions may increase profit contribution by 5-20%, depending on the problem characteristics. These methods have been incorporated into a commercial software product used by several shipping companies.

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