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Discrete Dynamics in Nature and Society
Volume 2014, Article ID 232890, 8 pages
Research Article

An Operation Optimization for Express Freight Trains Based on Shipper Demands

1School of Traffic and Transportation, Lanzhou Jiaotong University, Lanzhou 730070, China
2School of Transportation & Logistics, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu 610031, China

Received 18 November 2013; Revised 16 December 2013; Accepted 24 December 2013; Published 12 January 2014

Academic Editor: Wuhong Wang

Copyright © 2014 Yuzhao Zhang and Yusong Yan. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The supreme goal of railway express freight transportation is to meet the various demands of shippers. This paper considers the optimization problem of the operation plan for express freight trains based on shipper demands, including transport volume, service frequency, and transit time. An integer programming model that takes maximum shipper demands as optimized objective is proposed to realize the assignment of trains to candidate paths. In this model, the number of marshalling cars for express freight train is set as a decision variable rather than a constant to better satisfy the demand characteristics. A heuristic solution algorithm based on genetic algorithm is then designed. Finally, a numerical case is applied to verify the feasibility of the model and the algorithm.