My research efforts will be pursued as part of the research work-package on ‘Smart Mobility’. Our team will investigate the potential of micro transport hubs in urban centers. Micro hubs are used as flexible consolidation points where parcels are consolidated from multiple carriers. Recently, rather than having a fixed location for the micro hub, increasing attention is given to mobile hubs, where, for example, a large truck has the same warehouse function, but can be located dynamically in the city, depending upon the needs in terms of important characteristics such as, downstream demand, time windows, etc.
A mobile micro hub is, for example, a trailer (or bus, barge, tram) fitted with loading dock operations and warehouse facilities. This mobile hub is then used as an inner-city base where last-mile deliveries and first-mile pick-ups are initiated. Usually, this is done with low-emission last mile delivery vehicles, e.g. Light Electrical Vehicles (reducing last mile autonomy problems), cargo bikes, or (flying or driving) drones. Mobile micro hubs can be used dynamically in time and space, require less investments, and are more flexible in terms of capacity. The PhD projects will focus on the business and socio-economic value, the effective and efficient planning and scheduling, and the space use and location evaluation of (mobile) micro hubs within a city logistics context.
Link to other neon research
I would like to collaborate with the people working on MaaS to investigate the benefits of integrating freight and passenger solutions, and to also include customer behaviors within the smart logistics context. I also hope that the people working on electricity grids, batteries, electric vehicles and chargers can help us to properly investigate the use of low-emission last mile delivery vehicles in our logistics models. This technical expertise is important in order to have meaningful models and results.