Project Description

Project Goals:

Truck arrivals at the terminals of sea and inland ports are not only subject to time-of-day fluctuations due to the usual transport runs, but additionally to delays caused by increased traffic volumes. Delayed train and ship arrivals also lead to peaks and thus congestion at terminal gates, resulting in suboptimal capacity utilization of handling resources in addition to waiting times. The introduction of rigid time slot booking systems has so far failed to smooth all peaks, as delays in arrivals make it impossible to maintain many slots. 



In the FLEXIKING project, a collaborative, flexible time slot booking system is to be developed that continuously takes into account current influences in the inflow of ships, trains and trucks and adapts both existing bookings and available booking options accordingly. Ideally, this will allow the planning of both terminals and transport companies to be taken into account, adjusted and thus optimized in order to achieve a balanced load on handling processes, handling equipment and transport units.


Role of the CML in FLEXIKING:

The CML brings its experience in the development of decision support systems and its scientific expertise in data science, artificial intelligence and mathematical optimization to the collaborative negotiation of time windows. In the implementation, the CML handles, among other things, the dynamic calculation of the time slot allocation plan considering the current situation and the negotiation of time slot adjustments balancing the interests of the terminal and the carrier. In addition, the CML is developing an AI-supported arrival time prediction module, which is intended to reduce planning uncertainty on the part of the terminals.


Project consortium:

Fraunhofer Center for Maritime Logistics and Services CML, TriCon Container-Terminal Nürnberg GmbH, cargo support GmbH & Co. KG, Institute for Maritime Logistics (MLS) of the Technical University of Hamburg and Studiengesellschaft für den Kombinierten Verkehr e.V. SGKV.

The project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMDV) as part of the IHATEC innovative port technologies funding program. The duration is 3 years in total.