Optimizing Asset Deployment in Maritime Law Enforcement

  • E. R. van VeldhovenEmail author
  • H. J. Fitski
Part of the NL ARMS book series (NLARMS)


Maritime security operations, such as counter-piracy operations, often take place in vast areas of open sea. This requires operating in a coalition task force consisting of multiple task units, each composed of a number of naval assets such as frigates, helicopters, and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). For the planning of these operations, we introduce a two-level approach. At the first level, the area of operations is divided into sectors and the available task units are assigned to these sectors. The second level consists of the tactical planning of the deployment of the individual assets of a task unit within the task unit’s sector. In this paper, we propose algorithms to tackle both levels of planning. For maritime security operations in general, we introduce an allocation algorithm for dividing an area of operations, based on the capabilities of the individual task units, in such a way that the expected effectiveness of the task force as a whole is optimal. For counter-piracy operations, where the focus is on the prevention of pirate attacks on merchant vessels, a search planning algorithm is introduced that allows generating effective search plans for the deployment of the task unit’s assets within a sector of the area of operations.


Naval Forces Maritime Law Enforcement Maritime Security Operations Counter-Piracy Operations Allocation Tactical Planning 


  1. Atkinson MP, Kress M, Szechtman R (2017) To Catch an Intruder: Part A - Uncluttered Scenario. Wiley Online Library
  2. Cattrysse DG, Van Wassenhove LN (1992) A survey of algorithms for the generalized assignment problem. European Journal of Operational Research 60:260–272Google Scholar
  3. Defensie (2014) Grondslagen van het Maritieme Optreden, Nederlandse maritiem-militaire doctrine. Ministerie van Defensie, The HagueGoogle Scholar
  4. Fitski HJ (2013) Effectiviteitsmaten voor counter piracy, counter smuggling en counter illegal fishing. TNO, The HagueGoogle Scholar
  5. Fitski HJ, Van Veldhoven ER, Nienhuis B (2015) Simulatie van maritieme oppervlaktebeeldopbouw met SURPASS. Militaire Spectator 184:14–24Google Scholar
  6. Henderson D, Jacobson SH, Johnson AW (2003) The Theory and Practice of Simulated Annealing. In: Glover F, Kochenberger GA (eds) Handbook of Metaheuristics. Springer, Boston MAGoogle Scholar
  7. Johnson DS, Aragon CR, McGeoch LA, Schevon C (1989) Optimization by Simulated Annealing: An Experimental Evaluation; Part I, Graph Partitioning, Operations Research 37:865–892Google Scholar
  8. Kirkpatrick S, Gelatt Jr CD, Vecchi MP (1983) Optimization by Simulated Annealing. Science 220:671–680Google Scholar
  9. Laan CM, Barros AI, Boucherie RJ, Monsuur H (2017) Security Games with Probabilistic Constraints on the Agent’s Strategy. In: Rass S, An B, Kiekintveld C, Fang F, Schauer S (eds) Decision and Game Theory for Security. Springer, Cham, pp 481–493Google Scholar
  10. Smith AJE, Van Dongen MPFM (2015) Programme V1114 MSA - Final Report. TNO, The HagueGoogle Scholar
  11. Vermeulen JFJ, Van Veldhoven ER (2014) Sector Search Algorithm for Maritime Situational Awareness. TNO, The HagueGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© T.M.C. Asser press and the authors 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Military Operations DepartmentTNOThe HagueThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations