Department of Economics and Business Economics

A Branch-and-Price Algorithm for Two Multi-Compartment Vehicle Routing Problems

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Despite the vast body of literature on vehicle routing problems, little attention has been paid to multi-compartment vehicle routing problems that investigate transportation of different commodities on the same vehicle, but in different compartments. In this project, we present two strategically different versions of the MCVRP in general settings. In the first version, different commodities may be delivered to the customer by different vehicles, but the full amount of each product must be delivered by a single vehicle. In the second version, each customer may only be serviced by a single vehicle, which must deliver the full amount of all commodities demanded by that customer. We present a Branch-and-Price algorithm for solving the two versions of the problem to optimality and we analyze the effect of the strategic decision of whether or not to allow multiple visits to the same customer by comparing the optimal costs of the two versions. Computational results are presented for instances with up to 100 customers and the algorithm can solve instances with up to 50 customers and 4 commodities to optimality.

NOTE: An early version of the paper was made public on the website of the journal. The present version is therefore denoted "Erratum".
Original languageEnglish
JournalEURO Journal on Transportation and Logistics
Pages (from-to)185-218
Number of pages33
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017

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