Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Industrial and Managements Systems Engineering

Committee Chair

Alan R McKendall, Jr


In shipyards and power plants, relocating resources (items) from existing positions to newly assigned locations are costly and may represent a significant portion of the overall project budget. Since the crane is the most popular material handling equipment for relocating bulky items, it is essential to develop a good crane route to ensure efficient utilization and lower cost. In this research, minimizing the total travel and loading/unloading costs for the crane to relocate resources in multiple time periods is defined as the crane sequencing problem (CSP). In other words, the objective of the CSP is to find routes such that the cost of crane travel and resource loading/unloading is minimized. However, the CSP considers the capacities of locations and intermediate drops (i.e., preemptions) during a multiple period planning horizon. Therefore, the CSP is a unique problem with many applications and is computationally intractable. A mathematical model is developed to obtain optimal solutions for small size problems. Since large size CSPs are computationally intractable, construction algorithms as well as improvement heuristics (e.g., simulated annealing, hybrid ant systems and tabu search heuristics) are proposed to solve the CSPs. Two sets of test problems with different problem sizes are generated to test the proposed heuristics. In other words, extensive computational experiments are conducted to evaluate the performances of the proposed heuristics.