Modelling of integrated vehicle scheduling and container storage problems in unloading process at an automated container terminal

Jiabin Luo, Y. Wu, A. Bergsten Mendes

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    72 Citations (Scopus)
    163 Downloads (Pure)


    Effectively scheduling vehicles and allocating storage locations for containers are two important problems in container terminal operations. Early research efforts, however, are devoted to study them separately. This paper investigates the integration of the two problems focusing on the unloading process in an automated container terminal, where all or part of the equipment are built in automation. We formulate the integrated problem as a mixed-integer programming (MIP) model to minimise ship’s berth time. We determine the detailed schedules for all vehicles to be used during the unloading process and the storage location to be assigned for all containers. A series of experiments are carried out for small-sized problems by using commercial software. A genetic algorithm (GA) is designed for solving large-sized problems. The solutions from the GA for the small-sized problems are compared with the optimal solutions obtained from the commercial software to verify the effectiveness of the GA. The computational results show that the model and solution methods proposed in this paper are efficient in solving the integrated unloading problem for the automated container terminal.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)32-44
    JournalComputers & Industrial Engineering
    Publication statusPublished - 23 Jan 2016

    Bibliographical note

    NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Computers and Industrial Engineering. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Computers and Industrial Engineering, [94, (2016)] DOI: 10.1016/j.cie.2016.01.010

    © 2016, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


    • Integer programming
    • Automated container terminal
    • Vehicle scheduling
    • Container storage
    • Container unloading


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