Terminal allocation problem in a transshipment hub considering bunker consumption

Lu Zhen, Shuaian Wang, Kai Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


This article investigates the method of allocating arriving vessels to the terminals in transshipment hubs. The terminal allocation decision faced by a shipping alliance has the influence on the scheduled arrival time of vessels and further affects the bunker consumption cost for the vessels. A model is formulated to minimize the bunker consumption cost as well as the transportation cost of inter-terminal transshipment flows/movements. The capacity limitation of the port resources such as quay cranes (QCs) and berths is taken into account. Besides the terminal allocation, the QC assignment decision is also incorporated in the proposed model. A local branching based method and a particle swarm optimization based method are developed to solve the model in large-scale problem instances. Numerical experiments are also conducted to validate the effectiveness of the proposed model, which can save around 14% of the cost when compared with the “First Come First Served” decision rule. Moreover, the proposed solution methods not only solve the proposed model within a reasonable computation time, but also obtain near-optimal results with about 0.1∼0.7% relative gap. Naval Research Logistics 63: 529–548, 2016.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)529-548
Number of pages20
JournalNaval Research Logistics
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • bunker consumption
  • port operations
  • shipping alliances
  • shipping lines
  • terminal allocation
  • transshipment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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