Biofuel refinery location and supply chain planning under traffic congestion

Yun Bai, Taesung Hwang, Seungmo Kang, Yanfeng Ouyang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

141 Citations (Scopus)


This research focuses on planning biofuel refinery locations where the total system cost for refinery investment, feedstock and product transportation and public travel is minimized. Shipment routing of both feedstock and product in the biofuel supply chain and the resulting traffic congestion impact are incorporated into the model to decide optimal locations of biofuel refineries. A Lagrangian relaxation based heuristic algorithm is introduced to obtain near-optimum feasible solutions efficiently. To further improve optimality, a branch-and-bound framework (with linear programming relaxation and Lagrangian relaxation bounding procedures) is developed. Numerical experiments with several testing examples demonstrate that the proposed algorithms solve the problem effectively. An empirical Illinois case study and a series of sensitivity analyses are conducted to show the effects of highway congestion on refinery location design and total system costs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-175
Number of pages14
JournalTransportation Research Part B: Methodological
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jan


  • Biofuel refinery location
  • Branch-and-bound
  • Lagrangian relaxation
  • Mixed-integer program
  • Supply chain planning
  • Traffic congestion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation


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