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Delft University o f Teclinology


Faculty of Mechanical, Maritime
ancl Materials Engineering

A German rail container operator projects a rail hub terminal in Mid-Germany t o


connect 4 container shuttle trains t o and f r o m North Germany w i t h 6 container
shuttle trains t o and f r o m South-Germany (see f i g u r e ) . T h e 4 Northern shuttle
trains are composed of 30 railcars (size 60', railcar capacity 3 T E U ) ; t h e six
southern shuttle trains consist of 20 railcars (also size 600 each.
Each shuttle train realizes 5 roundtrips per week (stochastically spread over t h e
w e e k ) , only 50 weeks per year. The average mix of containers is 5 0 % 20 f t .
containers and 5 0 % 40 f t . containers. The operator estimates an 8 0 % average
utilization rate f o r all t h e shuttle trains (inbound and o u t b o u n d ) .

Question l a
W h a t is t h e average yearly v o l u m e t h a t m u s t be handled by t h e t e r m i n a l . Present y o u r answer in TEU handlings
and in container handlings and show t h e container flows t h r o u g h t h e t e r m i n a l .

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The transfer o f all containers f r o m t h e northern shuttle trains t o t h e southern shuttle trains ( a n d reverse) will be
realized via a stacking area (see figure below) so, t h e r e will be no direct container transfer b e t w e e n t r a i n s . Due
to the stochastic arrival of shuttle trains over t h e w e e k , the operator has estimated t h e following d w e l l t i m e s for
the t w o container types (equal f o r full and e m p t y containers);
Average d w e l l t i m e for 20 f t . containers

1 day

Average d w e l l t i m e for 4 0 f t . containers

2 days

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For reasons o f flexibility and coping w i t h train delays, t h e operator requires a m a x i m u m stack utilization of 5 0 %
u n d e r average operational conditions; t h e terminal operates 365 days in t h e year.

Questions l b
W h a t is t h e m i n i m u m required gross stack capacity in TEU-slots.

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T h e o p e r a t o r e s t i m a t e s t h a t M o n d a y and Friday will be peak days w i t h a reasonable probability t h a t both the


n o r t h e r n a n d t h e s o u t h e r n s h u t t l e trains m u s t be handled d u r i n g t h e day (total 10 t r a i n s ) . During a day t h e
t e r m i n a l is 18 hrs. continuously operational. T h e projected container handling cranes will have an operational
handling rate o f 30 container handling per hour (train ^

stack or stack t r a i n ) . Furthermore the rail operator has

no influence o n t h e t r a i n load planning so every filling rate and mix of 20 f t . and 4 0 f t . containers m a y occur.

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Delft University o f Technology


Faculty of Mechanical, Maritime
and Materials Engineering

Question I c
How many cranes are required t o assure t h a t every shuttle train can be handled in one day ( u n l o a d e d a n d
loaded), regardless t h e filling ( = utilization) rate and mix of containers per t r a i n .

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