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Relay shipment planning for non-logistics vehicles Disclosure Number: IPCOM000249211D
Publication Date: 2017-Feb-10
Document File: 10 page(s) / 85K

Publishing Venue

The Prior Art Database


Last mile delivery logistics suffers from problems of scalability and lack of green energy options. Focus on vehicle routing optimization techniques address the problems of minimizing overlaps between routes and ensuring each delivery schedule covers maximum number of delivery points in an efficient manner. Current research has been in the direction of applying fuzzy logic or heuristics based methods with consideration for various supply chain costs such as time, resources and impact on environment. This still addresses last mile delivery as a domain of logistics provider resulting in extra carbon footprint and scalability constraints on modern city infrastructure. There is very little research in using vehicles that are already using city’s infrastructure for other purposes to also participate in last mile delivery. This publication aims to demonstrate an approach of using general purpose vehicles on the road for purposes other than package delivery for delivery of packages through a relay mechanism that use controlled deviations to the vehicle’s planned routes and intermediate storage terminals to allow use of multiple vehicles plying on multiple routes to collaboratively relay one or more delivery packages from a source to destination address even if no single vehicle’s route encompass both source and destination address.

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Relay shipment planning for non-logistics vehicles

The purpose of this publication is to discuss implementation of a package delivery planning

algorithm that addresses the following needs:

1. Allow independent non-contracted vehicles to be used for package pickup and delivery.

2. Allow a single package to be picked up by one vehicle from the source address and be

handed over to other vehicles before it is delivered to its destination address.

3. Use unattended storage locker with security mechanism as intermediate buffer point for

storing packages between hand over from one vehicle to another

4. Determine optimum location of such storage locker including moving such locker based

on multiple factors such as proximity to configurable number of routes, deviations caused

for each route, congestion at each storage locker node etc.

Definition of Terms Vehicle routing problem (VRP) is a generalization of the well-known travelling salesman problem

to determine the optimal sets of routes for a fleet of delivery vehicles to deliver packages from a

distribution center to customers who ordered those items. The optimal solution is often termed

as a “NP-hard” problem in domain of combinatorial optimization and requires reducing the set of

feasible solutions to a discrete set of solutions to arrive at a solution that is best within the

discrete set.

E-Commerce Logistics is an extension of logistics management of physical goods in supply

chain management that involves management of goods and related information from place of

procurement to end consumer in the context of merchandise sold web or mobile commerce.

Based on the process under consideration it may refer to procurement logistics, distribution

logistics, reverse logistics etc. E-commerce logistics needs additional characteristics compared

to supply chain logistics such as real time access and insight to inventory movement, alignment

and automation of important touch points in the supply chain and handling of multi-channel and

omni-channel use cases. Forrester Research calls e-commerce logistics end-to-end logistics

which represents the order visibility and service continuity from online order to the final

destination and the reverse logistics in the case of product return (Deborah L. Bayles, 2001).

Last mile delivery is defined as the final leg in a business-to-consumer (B2C) delivery service


where goods ordered by the customer were delivered at their home or a collection point

(Gevaers et al., 2011). In this publication, last mile covers delivery of goods from an urban

distribution center of the retailer to the customer’s home or collection point.

Unattended parcel delivery denotes the mechanism where a goods is delivered to a customer

without requirement of the customer being physically present at the time of delivery. This is

usually achieved through the concept of shared parcel lockers.

Shared Parcel Lockers denote the concept of secure lockers that can be used for unattended

parcel delivery....