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Planning of multi-product pipelines by economic lot scheduling models

Thomas Kirschstein

European Journal of Operational Research, 2018, vol. 264, issue 1, 327-339

Abstract: In chemical and petroleum industry pipelines are one of the most important means of transportation. However, flexibility of pipeline transport systems is limited by many restrictions. Therefore, the planning of pipeline operations is a crucial part of logistics management in these industries. A particularly challenging problem is the pipeline scheduling which is concerned with finding the sequences, times, and sizes of batch injections in pipeline systems. This paper specifically studies the underlying core scheduling problem by assuming a simple multi-product pipeline system. It is shown that finding a sequence of batches which minimizes stock holding and setup costs in the long run is an NP-hard scheduling problem, namely a variant of the economic lot scheduling problem (ELSP) with additional constraints. Therefore, a powerful heuristic for the sequence-dependent ELSP is adapted and extended to meet the requirements of the outlined pipeline scheduling problem. The application of the heuristic is illustrated by case studies from chemical and petroleum industry.

Keywords: Scheduling; Economic lot scheduling problem; Pipeline management (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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