Real-time multivehicle truckload pickup and delivery problems

Jian Yang, Patrick Jaillet, Hani Mahmassani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

234 Scopus citations


In this paper we formally introduce a generic real-time multivehicle truckload pickup and delivery problem. The problem includes the consideration of various costs associated with trucks' empty travel distances, jobs' delayed completion times, and job rejections. Although very simple, the problem captures most features of the operational problem of a real-world trucking fleet that dynamically moves truckloads between different sites according to customer requests that arrive continuously. We propose a mixed-integer programming formulation for the offline version of the problem. We then consider and compare five rolling horizon strategies for the real-time version. Two of the policies are based on a repeated reoptimization of various instances of the offline problem, while the others use simpler local (heuristic) rules. One of the reoptimization strategies is new, while the other strategies have recently been tested for similar real-time fleet management problems. The comparison of the policies is done under a general simulation framework. The analysis is systematic and considers varying traffic intensities, varying degrees of advance information, and varying degrees of flexibility for job-rejection decisions. The new reoptimization policy is shown to systematically outperform the others under all these conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)135-148
Number of pages14
JournalTransportation Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 2004
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation


  • Intelligent transportation systems
  • Real-time fleet management
  • Truckload trucking
  • Vehicle routing


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