OR Spectrum

, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 53–71 | Cite as

Vehicle routing concepts in the closed-loop container network of ARN—a case study

  • Ieke le BlancEmail author
  • Maaike van Krieken
  • Harold Krikke
  • Hein Fleuren
Regular Article


In this paper we discuss a real-life case study to optimize the logistics network for the collection of containers from end-of-life vehicle dismantlers in the Netherlands. Advanced planning concepts, such as dynamic assignment of dismantlers to logistic service providers, are analyzed using a simulation model. Based on this model, we periodically solve a vehicle routing problem to gain insight into the long-term performance of the system. The vehicle routing problem considered is a multi-depot pickup and delivery problem with alternative delivery locations. A special characteristic of the problem is the limited vehicle capacity of two containers. We solve this problem with a heuristic based on route generation and set partitioning.


Reverse logistics Closed-loop supply chain management Vehicle routing Set partitioning Distribution planning 



The authors would like to thank Roelof Reinsma and Annemieke van Burik of Auto Recycling Nederland for their assistance and support during the project. Furthermore, we thank the two anonymous referees for their valuable comments on the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ieke le Blanc
    • 1
    Email author
  • Maaike van Krieken
    • 1
  • Harold Krikke
    • 1
  • Hein Fleuren
    • 1
  1. 1.CentER applied researchTilburg UniversityTilburgThe Netherlands

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