Strategic Design for Delivery with Linked Transportation Assets: Trucks and Drones

Home delivery by drones as an alternative or complement to traditional delivery by trucks is attracting considerable attention from major retailers and services, as well as startups. While drone delivery may offer considerable economic savings, the fundamental issues of how best to deploy drones for home delivery are not well understood. Our research provides a strategic analysis for the design of hybrid truck-drone delivery systems using continuous approximation modeling techniques to derive general insights. We formulated and optimized models of hybrid truck-drone delivery, where truck-based drones make deliveries simultaneously with trucks, and compared their performance to truck-only delivery. Our results suggest that truck-drone delivery can be very advantageous economically in many settings, especially with multiple drones per truck, but the benefits depend strongly on the relative operating costs and marginal stop costs.

Language

  • English

Project

  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $50000
  • Contract Numbers:

    DTRT13-G-UTC37

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Midwest Transportation Center

    Iowa State University
    2711 S Loop Drive, Suite 4700
    Ames, IA  United States  50010-8664

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Managing Organizations:

    Midwest Transportation Center

    Iowa State University
    2711 S Loop Drive, Suite 4700
    Ames, IA  United States  50010-8664
  • Performing Organizations:

    University of Missouri, St. Louis

    1 University Boulevard
    St. Louis, MO  United States  63121-4400
  • Principal Investigators:

    Campbell, James

    Sweeney, Donald

  • Start Date: 20160101
  • Expected Completion Date: 20171130
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01594546
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Midwest Transportation Center
  • Contract Numbers: DTRT13-G-UTC37
  • Files: UTC, RiP
  • Created Date: Mar 24 2016 4:10PM