Optimization Models and Algorithms: An Emerging Technology for the Motor Carrier Industry

Warren Buckler Powell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The emergence of new information technologies, tremendous competition, and the growth of very large carriers in truckload trucking is placing increasing emphasis on powerful new tools for planning operations. Increasingly, management in the motor carrier industry is being asked to review and critically evaluate these new technologies for their own operations. We review optimization models and algorithms for transportation, with the intent of providing lay management with at least a feeling of the range of technologies that are available, and a sense of the strengths and weaknesses of each. The presentation describes the different types of applications of optimization to transportation that have evolved, and outlines how different methods are suited to different types of problems. Special attention is given to real-time optimization for truckload motor carriers. A new interactive graphic simulation system, called MIDAS, (micro dispatch and simulation), has been developed for demonstrating optimization methods, allowing the user to compete against the optimization model in a real-time framework.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-80
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1991

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Automotive Engineering


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