Title: Factors influencing the design of a linear rail network for a dedicated freight corridor

Authors: T. Godwin; Ram Gopalan; T.T. Narendran

Addresses: Indian Institute of Management Tiruchirappalli, Tiruchirappalli – 620015, India. ' School of Business, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, 227 Penn Street, Camden, NJ 08102, USA. ' Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai – 600036, India

Abstract: The design of a new, linear rail network entails determination of the number and location of sidings in a manner that minimises the total travel times of trains. Given the number of trains that need to be operated and the set of feasible siding locations, we study the influence of the number of siding locations on the travel times of trains along a single track, two-way railway system. For a fixed number of trains that need to be operated, increasing the number of siding locations beyond a critical threshold offsets any incremental 'meet-pass' benefits, due to the increased congestion delays incurred by trains at each siding location. A 0-1 mixed integer programme is developed to determine the optimal number of sidings at each location and the best freight train schedule. A computational study on a real world problem is conducted by varying the number of siding locations for different traffic levels. We observe that there exists an optimal number of siding locations for any given traffic level.

Keywords: linear rail networks; siding location; freight train scheduling; sidings; dedicated freight corridors; network design; travel times; two-way railways; mixed integer programming.

DOI: 10.1504/IJLSM.2013.051021

International Journal of Logistics Systems and Management, 2013 Vol.14 No.1, pp.73 - 92

Published online: 14 Dec 2012 *

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