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SWUTC Ph.D. Candidate Assistantship Project Description

Marine Transportation System Maintenance Optimization

University: Texas A&M University

Principal Investigator:
Mohammadadel Khodakarami
Zachry Department of Civil Engineering
(979) 458-4742

Faculty Supervisor:
Dr. Bruce X. Wang
Zachry Department of Civil Engineering
(979) 845-9902

Funding Source: USDOT Funds

Total Project Cost: $31,540

Project Number: 600451-00039

Date Started: 9/1/14

Estimated Completion Date: 8/31/15

Project Summary

Project Abstract:
This research aims to develop some analytical models for optimizing US waterway maintenance defined on an intermodal network. This network includes the US marine network comprised of waterway segments, dams/locks, and ports along with the landside transportation network connected to endpoint ports comprising highways and railways. In this problem intermodal network is represented by a set of nodes and a set of links. Each link may be construed as an entity with a through capacity for cargo movements. Nodes are for the beginnings and endings of links or connections between links. Commodities go between origins/destinations, typically referred to as OD flows in literature. Each origin and destination is just a point on the network. Each OD flow goes through the network along a specific path that consists of a set of connected links. Each element has a capacity that can be improved, and the magnitude of that improvement is determined by extent of the maintenance action taken. Likewise, the maintenance cost for each element is also a function of the extent of the maintenance action. The network has a limit to the maintenance budget each year for all the maintenance requests proposed for the same year. Each maintenance package has a requested budget and an expected improvement to the element in terms of dredging depth (to rivers or ports) or increased operational hours (to locks/dams).

Project Objectives:
The objective of this study is to select maintenance projects in order to maximize the total network OD flow.

Task Descriptions:

Task 1Literature Review:
Provides an exhaustive review of literature review and similar studies including marine facility maintenance operation and projects fund allocation.

Task 2Develop Methodology:
This section includes several subsections relating to different models that are explained in the objectives section. Each subsection provides the methodology of study, the logic of models, and final developed models.

Task 3Results:
This part presents the results of application of real data from US marine network plus the analysis and evaluation of results.

Task 4Conclusion:
This part presents the summary of study and highlights the main achievements of this study. In addition draws the path for future studies.

Task 5 – Prepare Final Report