Short-term scheduling of multiple source pipelines with simultaneous injections and deliveries

Published in Computers & Operations Research, 2016


This paper addresses the optimal scheduling of straight pipelines featuring multiple intermediate nodes acting as dual-purpose stations, with a continuous-time Mixed-Integer Linear Programming formulation partly derived from Generalized Disjunctive Programming. The new model allows for an intermediate station to act as an output and input terminal at the same time so as to reduce the number of segment switches between active and idle, and consequently decrease operating costs. Contrary to previous approaches, decisions related to batch sizing, batch sequencing and timing are determined in a single step. Several examples of growing complexity are solved to illustrate the effectiveness and computational advantage of the proposed model in both solution quality and CPU time.