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Routing design for less-than-truckload motor carriers using ant colony techniques


  • Barcos, Lucía
  • Rodríguez, Victoria M.
  • Álvarez, María Jesús
  • Robusté, Francesc


One of the most important challenges for Less-Than-Truck-Load carriers consists of determining how to consolidate flows of small shipments to minimize costs while maintaining a certain level of service. For any origin-destination pair, there are several strategies to consolidate flows, but the most usual ones are: peddling/collecting routes and shipping through one or more break-bulk terminals. Therefore, the target is determining a route for each origin-destination pair that minimizes the total transportation and handling cost guaranteeing a certain level of service. Exact resolution is not viable for real size problems due to the excessive computational time required. This research studies different aspects of the problem and provides a metaheuristic algorithm (based on Ant Colonies Optimization techniques) capable of solving real problems in a reasonable computational time. The viability of the approach has been proved by means of the application of the algorithm to a real Spanish case, obtaining encouraging results.

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  • Barcos, Lucía & Rodríguez, Victoria M. & Álvarez, María Jesús & Robusté, Francesc, 2004. "Routing design for less-than-truckload motor carriers using ant colony techniques," DEE - Working Papers. Business Economics. WB wb043814, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía de la Empresa.
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:wbrepe:wb043814

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