WIT Press

Enemy At The Gates: Introduction Of Multi-Agents In A Terminal Information Community


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WIT Press


L Henesey & J Törnquist


Enemy at the gates: introduction of Multi- Agents in a terminal information community L. Henesey & J Tornquist Department of Software Engineering and Computer Science Blekinge Institute of Technology, Sweden Abstract Container terminals in Europe play a significant role as nodes within logistics chains. The management of container transportation system is a decentralized, often poorly structured, complex, and changeable problem domain. Therefore we propose that a Multi-Agent System (MAS) approach would offer port and terminal actors (e.g. rail operators), a suitable means of control, coordination, and management in the container terminal domain. Ports, as nodes, accept and deliver freight from various modes of transport and offer services that add value to the freight. In order to plan the activities in the terminals, continuous and reliable information on the cargos’ physical status (e.g. position, condition) is paramount to other activities. Integrating the information flows from the various transport providers and actors would improve the planning for the terminals and benefit planning and scheduling for the others in the chain. Through the introduction of \“information society” to a logistics chain, transport providers and actors can improve individual performance and service by sharing information with each other. In the suggested MAS approach, the actors involved in the physical and information flows will be mapped with agents that will have the abilities to search, coordinate, communicate, and negotiate with other agents in order to complete their specified goal(s). Information society members could benefit from information sharing with the use of Multi-Agents, especially in cases of deviations or other kinds of problems. Knowing problems at an early stage can increase the ability to limit negative impacts. Thus, this approach may serve as the basis for a decision support system (DSS).