Multi-period reverse logistics network design


Published: 28Feb2012

Authors: Alumur, Sibel A.; Nickel, Stefan; Saldanha-da-Gama, Francisco; Verter, Vedat


The configuration of the reverse logistics network is a complex problem comprising the determination of the optimal sites and capacities of collection centers, inspection centers, remanufacturing facilities, and/or recycling plants. In this paper, we propose a profit maximization modeling framework for reverse logistics network design problems. We present a mixed-integer linear programming formulation that is flexible to incorporate most of the reverse network structures plausible in practice. In order to consider the possibility of making future adjustments in the network configuration to allow gradual changes in the network structure and in the capacities of the facilities, we consider a multi-period setting. We propose a multi-commodity formulation and use a reverse bill of materials in order to capture component commonality among different products and to have the flexibility to incorporate all plausible means in tackling product returns. The proposed general framework is justified by a case study in the context of reverse logistics network design for washing machines and tumble dryers in Germany. We conduct extensive parametric and scenario analysis to illustrate the potential benefits of using a dynamic model as opposed to its static counterpart, and also to derive a number of managerial insights. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

European Journal of Operational Research, 2011