Development of a profit-based air cargo loading information system

Henry C.W. Lau, W. T. Tsui, Ka Man Lee, G. T.S. Ho, A. Ning

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


In today's competitive logistics business environment, airfreight forwarders need to optimize every aspect of their logistics operations. However, forwarders still heavily rely on human brain and working experiences for calculating complex cargo packing and scheduling problems. Although recent research studies related to cargo packing and scheduling problems have resulted in the development of a number of advanced techniques of cargo planning, it can be seen that most of the research work is focused on the optimization of space in order to achieve the maximum possible amount of cargo to be packed in the minimum of space. After numerous site evaluation and end-user feedbacks, it is found that space optimization does not necessarily cause profit optimization, which is the ultimate aim of logistics providers. A study of contemporary research publications indicates that there are inadequate research studies related to profit-based optimization in cargo packing areas. This paper presents a profit-based air cargo loading information system (ACLIS) that embeds an innovative technology known as heuristics iterative reasoning technology (HIRT) that supports loading plan generation, focusing on maximization of the profit margin. In general, the proposed system is meant to maximize the profit in the airfreight forwarding business. It adopts an objective function governed by a list of constraints together with rule-based reasoning to provide expert advice to support the generation of appropriate loading plans.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-312
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2006


  • Airfreight forwarding business
  • Heuristics
  • Objective function
  • Profit optimization
  • Rule-based reasoning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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