Business Areas

Full integration of supply chains has long been the ultimate goal of the logistics industry. Several leading European industries, such as the mining industry of northern Sweden, have already reached a high level of internal integration of supply chains. However, a major obstacle on the quest to fully integrate supply chains is the unreliability in freight transports that has plagued the European industry for centuries. Unreliable transports lead to the use of large inventories, and consequently capital costs, to increase reliability and end-to-end punctuality. As an example, on the Ofoten line, which is the Norwegian part of the iron ore corridor from Kiruna to Narvik and Luleå, punctuality was only 70% during the first five months of 2015. The corridor is of vital importance to European industry: 90% of the iron ore production in the EU is transported here, and from Narvik 18 million tons of iron ore are shipped annually. The iron ore is shipped by LKAB, which is the largest freight company in Sweden. Increasing transport reliability on this and other critical freight corridors would have an enormous impact on the efficiency of the logistics chain.

The CO2REOPT project aims at developing methods and tools for full external transport integration where suppliers, manufacturers and customers share a fully integrated and optimized intermodal supply chain. Two important cross-border case studies are considered -- the LKAB iron ore rail transports from Kiruna (Sweden) to Narvik (Norway), and the Samskip synchromodal transport services on the corridor between Norway, Sweden, and various locations in Europe via the ports of Rotterdam and Duisburg. The CO2REOPT goal of increasing reliable railway transports have a large impact on the attractiveness of railway freight in general, and in particular for the highly-electrified European network the project contributes to a shift from fossil-fueled transports to a much greener alternative. Summarizing, the research question of this project is as follows:

Which collaborative arrangements best support an optimal design for reliable and competitive cross-
border transport chains, featuring parallel transport routes, and aiming at a high utilization and sustainability, seamless transshipments, and high frequent services? These anticipated collaborative arrangements involve the design of collaborative planning and execution arrangements for cross-border transport that support the offering of competitive transport solutions. The research outcomes are prototype collaborative planning tools whose solutions will be evaluated on efficiency, reliability, and sustainability, while meeting prospected capacity requirements.

CO2REOPT is lead by SICS Swedish ICT Västerås and is a collaboration with the Swedish partners: LKAB and Trafikverket (Swedish Transport Administration), SINTEF and JBV in Norway and the Dutch partners: EUR, SAMKIP and SP.