Simulation-Based Optimization in the Field of Physcial Internet

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One of the biggest challenges in the field of Physical Internet (PI) is the optimization of material flows within global transportation networks. Within such real-world logistics networks, complex problems with many restrictions have to be considered. As such problems are highly dynamic, standard formulations and algorithms of already known problem models are difficult to apply. Thus, it is necessary to develop new methods which allow a stable optimization of PI logistics networks. One solution approach is simulationbased optimization. Realistic models of real-world environments are created to be able to consider all complex restrictions. It has to be decided how simulation and optimization nodes work together and communicate with each other. These considerations have to be made due to the required coupling process between the simulation and optimization. This paper shows how the optimization of a PI problem is interrelated with its simulation. It is demonstrated how simulation is used to evaluate possible solution candidates of the optimization process. Furthermore, it is presented how the simulation uses the optimization algorithms to generate new feasible candidates. The developed solution approach is realized by using the frameworks HeuristicLab and Easy2Sim. HeuristicLab is used for optimization and Easy2Sim for simulation parts. Moreover, it is presented how simulation and optimization parts communicate with each other. Therefore, an interface for the exchange of data between the simulation and the optimization pars is implemented. As a result, components can be programmed in different languages and different data structures can be used.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 4th International Physical Internet Conference (IPIC 2017)
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventInternational Physical Internet Conference - Graz, Austria
Duration: 4 Jul 20176 Jul 2017


ConferenceInternational Physical Internet Conference


  • simulation
  • optimization
  • real-world problems
  • logistics networks
  • physical internet


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