A distribution planning model for natural gas supply chain: A case study
In this paper, a real-world case study of a natural gas supply chain is investigated. By using concepts related to natural gas industry and the relations among the components of transmission and distribution network, a six-level supply chain has been introduced and presented schematically. The defined supply chain is a single-objective, multi-period, and single-product problem that is formulated as a mixed integer non-linear programming model, which can easily be linearized. The objective of this model is to minimize direct or indirect distribution costs. There are six groups of constraints including capacity, input and output balancing, demand satisfaction, network flow continuity, and relative constraints to the required binary variables. The solution algorithm of the problem is hierarchical; in each step, one section of the problem is solved using an exact method; the outputs of this section are passed to the next relative section as inputs. Finally, it is shown that the problem has been solved in a reasonable time and desirable results are attained. The use of proposed model and its solution approach have been studied in two gas trunk lines, to present the priority of its cost saving.
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- Beamon, Benita M., 1998. "Supply chain design and analysis:: Models and methods," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 281-294, August.
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- Guldmann, Jean-Michel & Wang, Fahui, 1999. "Optimizing the natural gas supply mix of local distribution utilities," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 112(3), pages 598-612, February.
- Daniel De Wolf & Yves Smeers, 2000. "The Gas Transmission Problem Solved by an Extension of the Simplex Algorithm," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(11), pages 1454-1465, November.
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