Evaluation of improvement areas in Freight Rail Transportation - Case of Green Cargo

Examensarbete för masterexamen
Master Thesis
Production engineering (MPPEN), MSc
Hagman, Sofie
Maria, De Nuria Calvo Mateo
Rail freight transport represents a very important and environmental friendly way of shipping cargo. Nevertheless, several reasons make this mode of transport not to be efficient as it could be. The two main causes leading to this are the priority of passenger rail transport over freight rail transport and the fact that many railroads are close to reaching its maximum capacity limitations. Consequently, freight rail transport companies should try to find ways to improve and optimize their activities and processes. This thesis was conducted as a case study at the railroad company Green Cargo, which is devoted to freight transport in Scandinavian countries. Apart from the information provided by Green Cargo, Trafikverket was also interviewed to bring the perspective of the whole rail industry. This master thesis analyzes the improvement possibilities of those areas identified by Green Cargo as the most important ones to work with. The analyzed improvement areas focus in optimizing both capacity and staff requirements at Green Cargo. The Capacity utilization improvement areas comprises aspects such as the optimization of the maximum capacity of each train and the establishment of an even cargo flow with little variation both during the different hours of a day as well as during the days of the week. The possibility of optimizing staff requirements is investigated by analyzing the concepts such as “single-shunting” and “centralization of staff”. Those two concepts have been developed by Green Cargo. The conclusion of this master thesis is that Green Cargo operations could be significantly optimized if the following suggestions were taken into consideration. When possible, the analyzed company should avoid driving in those railroads mainly occupied by passenger trains to avoid problems linked to the higher priority of passenger transport. Green Cargo should also establish a priority system intended to determine which customers are more profitable to work with, idea related with a Green Cargo own concept called “anchor blocks”. In addition, the further implementation of “single shunting” and “centralization of staff” would significantly benefit this company. In addition, Green Cargo should put efforts in solving some important communication problems among the different departments.
Övrig industriell teknik och ekonomi , Transport , Other industrial engineering and economics , Transport
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