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The adoption of self-driving delivery robots in last mile logistics

Chen, Cheng, Demir, Emrah ORCID:, Huang, Yuan ORCID: and Qiu, Rongzu 2021. The adoption of self-driving delivery robots in last mile logistics. Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review 146 , 102214. 10.1016/j.tre.2020.102214

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Covid-19, the global pandemic, has taught us the importance of contactless delivery service and robotic automation. Using self-driving delivery robots can provide flexibility for on-time deliveries and help better protect both driver and customers by minimizing contact. To this end, this paper introduces a new vehicle routing problem with time windows and delivery robots (VRPTWDR). With the help of delivery robots, considerable operational time savings can be achieved by dispatching robots to serve nearby customers while a driver is also serving a customer. We provide a mathematical model for the VRPTWDR and investigate the challenges and benefits of using delivery robots as assistants for city logistics. A two-stage matheurisitic algorithm is developed to solve medium scale VRPTWDR instances. Finally, results of computational experiments demonstrate the value of self-driving delivery robots in urban areas by highlighting operational limitations on route planning.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 1366-5545
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 20 January 2021
Date of Acceptance: 22 December 2020
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 19:33

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