A Decision Support System for Synchromodal transport

Project Details


Synchromodal transport is a new concept in the world of transport. Unlike purely multimodal transport, synchromodal goes a step further by including real-time re-routing of loading units over the network to cope with disturbances and operational or customer requirements. As a result of this, users can at any time, depending on the current circumstances, choose the most suitable logistics chain which fits their needs. However, little has been investigated about this synchromodal potential and its feasibility. Although there is some discussion in the literature, there is no theoretical framework to form a basis for a model development. The aim of the project is to develop and delineate such a theoretical framework which will be empirically utilized in terms of an innovative dynamic assignment model. This model will assist in the dynamic allocation of freight flows within a synchromodal context by using a re-optimization algorithm. The model will assign the freight movements to the multimodal network according to user preferences (transport time, price, reliability, damage risks…) and transport system capacity. The transport system capacity will make use of an innovative approach that integrates infrastructure capacity (road congestion, rail slots…) with service capacity (vehicle capacity, frequency…). The outcome will express the most appropriate transport service and quality characteristics that are needed to transport a given payload. The new synchromodal framework will be further integrated in an existing decision support system and consequently validated. The final evaluation of the project will be based on the stakeholder criteria and preferences by using the MAMCA (Multi Actor Multi Criteria Analysis). This will lead to identification of policy measures to further stimulate the synchromodal concept and delineate its role for broader implementation.

Doctoral (PhD) grant strategic basic research (SB) - Thomas Ambra
Effective start/end date1/01/1617/10/19


  • Synchromodal transport

Flemish discipline codes 2018-2023

  • Statistics


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