Optimisation of bulk export terminals

About the Project

Currently, short-term planning (2-7 day horizon) and operations scheduling (0-36hr horizon) decisions are fundamentally manual processes for existing coal export terminal operations. Software tools are used to support manual planning through improved visualisation of pending activities and to perform routine planning calculations.

However, computational optimisation of the schedule for allocation of terminal equipment is not currently part of the process. Rather, the schedule is configured manually by terminal planners either from scratch or by modifying non-optimised master schedules.


This project aims to boost the productivity of Australia's energy resources sector through increased coal export terminal capability. Increased capability will be realised through schedule optimisation and without significant capital infrastructure outlay.

The schedule optimisation will be adaptable to most Australian coal terminals. Potential increases in capability of up to 10% will ultimately benefit a range of coal chain stakeholders, potentially delivering national and sector wide impact.

Once demonstrated to be effective in Australian coal terminals, the schedule optimisation approach could also be deployed to global export and import coal terminals.

Project Members

Project Timeframe

This project is now complete.

Project Funding

Total Project Cost: $240,000

NERA: $120,000

Industry: $120,000

*Funding excludes GST