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A Novel Bin Design Problem and High Performance Algorithm for E-commerce Logistics System

by   Xinhang Zhang, et al.

Packing cost accounts for a large part of the e-commerce logistics cost. Mining the patterns of customer orders and designing suitable packing bins help to reduce operating cost. In the classical bin packing problem, a given set of cuboid-shaped items should be packed into bins with given and fixed-sizes (length, width and height) to minimize the number of bins that are used. However, a novel bin design problem is proposed in this paper. The decision variables are the geometric sizes of bins, and the objective is to minimize the total surface area. To solve the problem, a low computational-complexity, high-performance heuristic algorithm based on dynamic programming and depth-first tree search, named DPTS, is developed. Based on real historical data that are collected from logistics scenario, numerical experiments show that the DPTS out-performed 5.8 in the total cost. What's more, DPTS algorithm requires only about 1/50 times of the computational resources compared to the GLS algorithm. This demonstrates that DPTS algorithm is very efficient in bin design problem and can help logistics companies to make appropriate design.


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