Increasing Rail Capacity Utilization in Port of Hamburg by Early Provision of Information for Import Containers

Problem definition

Various actors are involved in hinterland transportation of incoming rail containers along the maritime transport chain. To coordinate each actor’s logistics processes, and therefore to improve utilization of existing transport capacity, the early provision of information, e.g. in form of estimated time of arrival (ETA), is inevitable. The port of Hamburg is selected for two main reasons. First, this port belongs to those ports that are historically based in urbanized areas. Therefore, its capacity is not expendable due to shortages in space with the consequence that utilization of capacity is particularly important Second, the port of Hamburg and its hinterland connection by rail are important location factors for German and European economies. Our investigation covers all relevant transportation and information processes as well as interfaces between a deep sea carrier, a terminal operator, a railway operator and a railway company in the case of the port of Hamburg. The objective was to measure impacts of these information flows on capacity utilization by means of a simulation based approach.

Container port simulation model