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Resource Optimization and Inventory Routing of the Packaged Liquefied Gas Supply Chain

Misra, Shamik, Kapadi, Mangesh, Gudi, Ravindra D., Saxena, Divya
Industrial & engineering chemistry process design and development 2019 v.58 no.18 pp. 7579-7592
algorithms, containers, inventories, packaging, planning, supply chain, system optimization, transportation
In this paper a supply chain optimization problem for packaged liquefied gaseous products is discussed from a warehouse stock management perspective. Liquefied gaseous products are transported across the supply chain using various reusable containers, and distribution to end users and collection after use of these containers are required to optimally operate an efficient and undisrupted supply chain. Along with traditional inventory routing, the framework presented in this paper explores some major aspects such as (1) resource estimation, (2) vehicle capacity utilization, and (3) inventory management. The proposed framework rigorously represents several nuances of the supply chain under different demand scenarios and generates an optimal delivery schedule, for the entire supply chain that minimizes the overall transportation cost by utilizing the available resources to its entirety. A rolling time horizon based planning strategy is also adopted to successfully implement the proposed framework for a larger operational horizons. Though the framework discussed here mainly represents packaged liquefied gaseous supply chain, the algorithm can be adopted and utilized for any supply chain with reusable/returnable transport packaging items.