Logistics optimization has recently received increasing attention from researchers and industrial organizations. This is due to the fact that current production and distribution logistics strategies are not that efficient. Logistics process in manufacturing industry can be divided into three sub-processes, namely external, in-plant, and return logistics.
This research study is mainly concerned with in-plant logistics which includes all the logistics activities from receiving of material, at the original equipment manufacturer’s facility, up to arranging them in appropriate racks and bins at the lines. The main optimization areas concerning in-plant logistics are storage, distribution and transportation, and line-side presentation. Currently the second optimization area, distribution and transportation, is in the spotlight and has received considerable attention due to its complexity, economic and environmental impacts.
Finding good solutions
Traditionally, optimization approaches in this area have been devised focusing only on the economic impact. Consideration of wider objectives and more operational constraints that are concerned with sustainable logistics issues and multiple decision problems pose new challenges that require new models and new application scenarios, which naturally lead to more complex optimization approaches. Therefore, this project is concerned with developing and applying integrated models, concepts, and optimization approaches in order to help with finding good solutions to distribution and transportation of material in the shop floor while considering multiple objectives and addressing several decision problems simultaneously. In this project we will rely on both exact and approximate methods to improve the efficiency of the logistics in industry.